Chicken Enchilada Quinoa Casserole

Here’s an interesting take on an enchilada casserole.  I’d been looking for something different to do with all the quinoa in my pantry and settled on this.  It was a great success and quickly consumed.  I used spicy enchilada sauce which gave it a good kick.  Next time I will likely add a can of hatch green chiles.  If you are feeling adventurous add in some jalapenos as well.

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cups dry Quinoa, cook according to package directions1 pound Chicken Breast, trim to bite sized pieces
  • 1 1/2 cups diced Yellow Onion
  • 2 tablespoons Olive Oil
  • 1 tablespoon Chili Powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon Garlic Salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon Black Pepper
  • 2 cups (16 ounces) Spicy Enchilada Sauce
  • 1 cup shredded Cheddar Cheese
  • 1 cup shredded Monterrey Jack or Mozzarella Cheese
  • 1/2 cup Chopped Green Onion (place in bowl)
  • 1 Avocado, cut into pieces & placed in bowl with juice of one lemon squeezed over
  • Salsa
  • Sour Cream

Directions

  1. Pre heat oven to 375 degrees F with the rack in the middle. Spray a large bake safe casserole (5 3/4 quart size) dish with some cooking spray.
  2. Cook quinoa, fluff with a fork and toss with enchilada sauce. Set aside in large bowl
  3. Heat oil in a skillet over medium high heat. Cook onion for a few minutes until fragrant & slightly browned.
  4. Add chicken and seasonings. Brown chicken a few minutes on each side. Make sure every piece is coated with seasonings.
  5. If needed, cook a few more minutes until chicken is opaque & cooked through.
  6. Add chicken to bowl with quinoa and toss to combine. Transfer to casserole dish.
  7. Top with cheeses. Bake uncovered for about 10 minutes or until cheese is melted.
  8. Set the oven to broil. Bake for a few more minutes (about 4 minutes) until cheese is slightly browned & bubbly. Watch carefully so it does not burn.
  9. Top with fresh avocado & green onion. Serve salsa & sour cream on the side. (Note: we let each person top their own to fit their preferences)

Creamy Jalapeno Green Sauce

This is the infamous “Green Sauce” that has spawned a legion of admirers. Beware, this recipe makes enough for one person, maybe two if they aren’t very hungry. I advice doubling or tripling the recipe if you hope to have any left to put in the fridge!

Ingredients

4 Large fleshy Jalapeno peppers
1 clove garlic
1/4 cup vegetable oil
coarse sea salt, to taste

Directions:

1. On a gas or charcoal grill, roast jalapenos until skin is thoroughly charred and blistered.
2. Place roasted peppers in a ziploc bag to steam and cool for 10-15 minutes
3. Using a kitchen knife, scrape the charring off, it should flake right off. Note – rinsing roasted jalapenos will dampen the spice, so don’t complain to me if you rinse them and then get a mild sauce.
4. Half and seed the peppers
5. In a blender, place the clove (I mince it first), peppers and about half the oil along with a little salt.
6. Add in remaining oil as you puree the peppers. You may want to scrape the sides of the glass container down a few times to make sure all the pepper is pureed.
7. Add salt to taste and blend to mix it in.

Serve with tortilla chips and something cold to drink!

Crock Pot Chili

This turned out really well.  I threw this together at the last moment before heading for work.  What a score!  We plowed through  this with only one serving left over!  Serve this with shredded cheese, fritos, and/or sour cream.  We put all three as a topping and it was great!
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 7 hours
Total Time: 7 hours, 15 minutes
Yield: 8 servings
Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2lb. ground beef or chili meat
  • 2 onions, chopped
  • 4 tbs minced garlic
  • 2 (14 oz.) cans diced tomatoes, undrained
  • 1 can Rotel tomatoes and green chiles (original)
  • 1 15 oz. and 1 8  oz can tomato sauce
  • 2 Tbsp. chili powder
  • 2 tsp. ground cumin
  • 1 tsp. dried oregano
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 2 (15 oz.) cans black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 can garbanzo beans. rinsed and drained

Directions:

  1. Cook ground beef in heavy skillet until brown and drain.
  2. Mix all ingredients  in 3-4 quart slow cooker.
  3. Cover and cook on low heat for 6-7 hours until vegetables are tender.

Crock Pot Carnitas!

I love carnitas.  The boys kind of like them, but have other Mexican favorites.  But everyone agreed this was a good meal.  It was truly easy.  Less than ten minutes to prep everything for the slow cooker, then just let it cook.  By the time dinner rolled around, we had some flavorful and tender carnitas!  This makes about 12 soft tacos.  I would note, adding onion and fresh cilantro to the taco makes it much better!

This recipe was cribbed from Taste of Home.

Ingredients

  •  1 boneless pork shoulder butt roast (3 to 4 pounds)
  • 3 tbs minced garlic
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 bunch green onions, chopped
  • 1 cup minced fresh cilantro
  • 1 cup salsa
  • 1/2 cup chicken broth
  • 1/2 cup tequila or additional chicken broth
  • 2 cans (4 ounces each) chopped green chiles
  • 12 flour tortillas (8 inches), warmed
  • Fresh cilantro leaves, sliced red onion, optional

Directions

  1. Cut roast in half; place in a 5-qt. slow cooker.
  2. Sprinkle with the garlic, oil, salt and pepper.
  3. Add the onions, cilantro, salsa, broth, tequila and chiles. (Note, I used 3/4 cup broth, 1/4 cup tequila)
  4. Cover and cook on low for 6-8 hours or until meat is tender.
  5. Remove meat; cool slightly. Shred with two forks and return to the slow cooker; heat through.
  6. Spoon about 2/3 cup meat mixture onto each tortilla; serve with toppings of your choice.

 

Hominy and Chicken Enchilada Casserole

This is a delicious and rich casserole that is southwestern but not spicy.  It serves four, although the recipe I cribbed it from said it served 8.  Not with three boys in the house!  I served it over Sweet Sour Cream Cornbread with Blackeyed Peas on the side.  It was gone before I knew what happened.

Serves 4

Prep Time – 25 minutes

Cook Time – 35 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 can of Golden Hominy
  • 1 can Green Enchilada Sauce
  • 1 1/2 pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts
  • 1 can diced green chilis
  • 2 eggs beaten
  • 1/2 reduced fat sour cream
  • 3/4 cup of Shredded Cheese
  • 3 or 4 sprigs cilantro

Directions

  1. Cut breast  in half if thick.  Boil chicken for 20-30 minutes with cilantro.
  2. Drain and cube chicken
  3. Preheat oven to 375
  4. Spray a 2 quart baking dish with cooking spray
  5. Combine all ingredeints except for the cheese, in the baking dish ( I used a 2 1/2 quart casserole dish)
  6. Season with salt, garlic salt or  spicier pepper seasonings to taste
  7. Top with shredded cheese
  8. Cover with lid or foil and bake for 25 minutes
  9. Uncover and bake for another 10 minutes.
  10. Allow to sit for 10 minutes and serve.

 

South Texas Avocado Hummus

This recipe is from Matushka Elizabeth Perdomo and is great anytime, nut just during the fasts!  The avocado gives it a really creamy texture, and the jalapeno does not overpower the hummus with spice.  I recommend making it as directed and including all “optional” ingredients.

Ingredients

  • 1 – 16 Oz Can Chickpeas or Garbanzo Beans
  • 1 Med. Avocado, Halved, Pitted, and Peel Removed
  • 1/4 C. Liquid from Can of Chickpeas, Reserved
  • 3-5 Tbsp. Lemon Juice, To Taste
  • 1 1/2 – 2 Tbsp. Tahini (Sesame Paste), To Taste
  • 1 Tbsp. Olive Oil
  • 1/2 Small Onion, Chopped
  • 1/2 tbs minced garlic
  • 1 Jalapeño Pepper, Stemmed & Seeded, Optional
  • 1 – 2 Sprigs Fresh Cilantro, Roughly Chopped, Optional
  • 1/2 Tsp. Salt, To Taste
  • 1- 2 Tbsp. Olive Oil, Reserve for Topping

Directions

  1. Drain chickpeas and set aside liquid from can.
  2. Combine chickpeas and remaining ingredients in blender or food processor.
  3. Add 1/4 cup of liquid from chickpeas.
  4. Blend for 3-5 minutes on low until thoroughly mixed and smooth.  Add additional reserved liquid by the tablespoon if too thick.
  5. Place in serving bowl, and create a shallow well in the center of the hummus.
  6. Add a small amount (1-2 tablespoons) of olive oil in the well. Garnish with parsley (optional).
  7. Serve immediately with fresh, warm or toasted pita bread or pita chips.
  8. Cover and refrigerate if not using immediately.

Poor Man’s Migas

Excuse the redundant title of this recipe, but this is truly a shortcut for people who love migas, but need to fix a quick breakfast.  I threw this together this morning and it was done in 5 minutes!  I’m thinking about making it again tomorrow.  A few little tips on this.  First, your tortilla chips are very important.  I use a thicker, heavier brand such as La Sobracito.  I am convinced that if you use Tostitos, you will not appreciate how close this recipe comes to migas.  Second, the salsa should be a tomato salsa that is fairly thin and has a lot of onions in it.  I save time by not cooking and sauteeing fresh onions with this recipe, so a good oniony salsa is key.  This version will fill you up for 245 calories (without tortillas).  A quick and tasty breakfast!

(Recipe is for 1 serving)

Ingredients

  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 ounce tortilla chips, crumbled
  • 1/2 ounce shredded cheddar cheese
  • Spicy salsa to taste
  • 2 flour tortillas, warmed (optional)

Directions

  1. Warm skillet over medium heat
  2. Beat eggs
  3. Crumble tortilla chips into eggs
  4. Add cheese to mixture
  5. Pour into skillet and immediately add salsa to taste
  6. Stir continually and until almost dry
  7. Serve on warm tortillas or on a plate.  Add more cheese and salsa on the tortilla if you wish.