Thursday, April 21, 2011

Food Network Friday - Emeril's Cowboy "Chicken" Casserole

This week the FNF crew took on Emeril Lagasse's Cowboy Chicken Casserole. I am an Emeril fan from way back (the early years anyway). His penchant for making decadent and flavorful dishes always made my mouth water. At first glance the ingredient list is a bit overwhelming. It is a huge list of ingredients, especially if you make Emeril's Southwestern Seasoning. As is my nature, I had to up the heat profile for this challenge. I am not going to list out the whole recipe here, because it still needs a bit of work. Honestly, I think this has great potential for being radically modified for my book project, so mum's going to be the word until I get it perfected.

Here it is just out of the oven.

I will tell you that for this first run I subbed Terry Hope Romero's steamed white seitan for the chicken. I subbed pasilla chiles for the green pepper, kept the seeds in the jalapenos, and added roasted Hatch chiles with the seeds in (in a much larger proportion) for the tomato mixture. I modified the seasonings so I didn't have to make the full recipe of Emeril's Seasoning. So while the original premise might have been the same as his original recipe, some delicious detours were taken.

A couple of notes on my conversion experience: first, I didn't have enough liquid left over to properly moisten the tortilla chips. They came out with a rather unpleasant funky texture. I had hoped to use 1/2 Daiya Pepper Jack and 1/2 Cheddar, but when I went to sprinkle on the Pepper Jack, it was moldy (EW), so I ended up using all Cheddar Daiya. At first I thought the filling needed more liquid as well, but it was actually really nice. I loved the spiced up version. I may even add more chiles and jalapenos next time! I made a smaller version and used an 8 x 8 square pan. I cut the cooking time to about 38 minutes. This was so rich and filling, I am betting you could serve about 8 people with the smaller version, especially if you serve it with a salad. This would make a great potluck dish.

Here you can see a nice shot of the creamy spicy filling.

Sorry for no recipe. But I know you creative cooking types can take that original recipe and create your own ridiculously decadent crowd pleasin' casserole from it!I am going to be up for hours I'm so full and I only had a small portion. BURP!!!

I've been having so much fun trying recipes from different cookbooks and doing FNF I haven't been creating my own stuff. I need to get to work on some new original recipes for you! Soon, my patient friends, soon!

Don't forget to check out Tami's wrap up at Vegan Appetite!!!

Last but not least, another shot in the pan.


  1. Kim, that looks so creamy! I love how you upped the spices, of course. Wait til you see mine later today- radically different than yours.

  2. I can't wait to see it. I thought a polenta crust would be a great mod of this.

  3. Polenta would be great! Very creamy and delicious, Kim! I am so loving that you get different types of Daiya. I love the heat you added also. YUM!