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Food Friday: Two Recipes! Chicken Chili and Frosted Banana Bars

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Faith's Firm Foundation: Food Friday: Two Recipes! Chicken Chili and Frosted Banana Bars

Friday, January 28, 2011

Food Friday: Two Recipes! Chicken Chili and Frosted Banana Bars

Kelsey made these Tuesday to serve my gals at "A Mom Thing".  I was leery of serving bars we'd never made before, but she told me they'd had around 41 5-star ratings on Taste of Home's site.  I thought that sounded like a fairly good recommendation! :)

We weren't disappointed--we loved them.  Kels frosted them while still a little warm, and we decided we liked them that way best.  
We stored them in the refrigerator, which I'm not sure was necessary, especially for as fast as they were eaten!  They taste better at room temperature, but they will dry out quickly if left out (for instance, served on a plate), so keep them covered until ready to serve.

Note:  If you like pumpkin bars, you'll like these.  If you don't like pumpkin bars, because you don't like pumpkin, then try these and see what you think, because they're smoother(?); they have a "gentler" taste.  I think you'll like them!

Frosted Banana Bars
Serves:  3 dozen
1/2 cup butter, softened
2 cups sugar
3 eggs
1-1/2 cups mashed ripe bananas (about 3 medium)
1 tsp vanilla extract (we always use pure--in fact, we get ours from Mexico--it just tastes better)
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
Dash of salt

Frosting ingredients:
1 pkg (8 oz) cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup butter, softened
4 cups powdered sugar
2 tsp vanilla extract

In a large bowl, cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy.  Beat in the eggs, bananas and vanilla.  Combine the flour, baking soda and salt.  Stir into creamed mixture just until blended.
Transfer to a greased 15 x 10 x 1-inch baking pan.  Bake at 350 degrees for 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean.  Cool in pan on a wire rack.

For frosting, in a small bowl, beat cream cheese and butter until fluffy.  Add powdered sugar and vanilla.  Beat until smooth.

Chicken Chili
Serves:  6
1-1/2 lbs boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
1 cup chopped onion
3 Tbsp oil (we usually use olive oil, but you can use canola, too)
1 can (15 oz) white kidney or cannellini beans, rinsed and drained (I thought I had these, but I didn't, so we used red kidney beans instead)
1 can (14-1/2 oz) diced tomatoes, undrained
1 can (14-1/2 oz) diced tomatoes with mild green chilies, undrained (or just use regular diced tomatoes, and add more chili powder or cayenne pepper)
1 cup frozen corn
1 tsp salt
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp minced garlic
1/2 tsp celery salt
1/2 tsp ground coriander
1/2 tsp pepper
Sour cream and shredded cheddar cheese, optional

In a large skillet, sauté chicken and onion in oil for 5 minutes or until chicken is browned.

Transfer to a 5-quart slow cooker (we used a 6-quart crockpot, but it was way too big; I think I would try a 4-quart one next time).  Stir in the beans, tomatoes, corn and seasonings.  Cover and cook on low for 5 hours or until chicken is no longer pink.  Garnish with sour cream and cheese, if desired.

We almost never measure seasonings, so adjust these to your family's tastes.  This chili isn't very spicy, so if you like things spicy, add cayenne pepper, or chili powder or something like that. We started this at about 1:00 p.m. and were able to eat by 5:30 by putting it on high for about an hour, and then turning it to low.  Be careful to stir this, because it seems to get really hot, really fast.

We served the leftovers the next day, and had a guest at our table (who, by the way, does like things spicy), so I needed to make it go a little further.  I cooked some more canned kidney beans, and tomato sauce, adding some cayenne pepper, and garlic powder, and then added the leftover chili to the large pot on the stove. No matter how low I had the heat, I had to watch it to make sure it didn't burn! It doesn't take long to reheat.

I served it with brown rice and tortilla chips, (to put the thick chili on top of), grated cheddar cheese and sour cream, and dry roasted peanuts to sprinkle over the top, and placed chili sauce on the table for our guest.

Serving it this way, made it a VERY filling meal.  You could make it go a LOT further this way, and you should warn your family or guests, because if they take a normal portion, they're going to be too full.

We also served corn bread along with it. And we had the bars for dessert!

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