Southwestern Salsa with Black Beans and Corn

Southwestern Black Bean and Corn Salsa

I started making this recipe 7-8 years ago when a co-worker made it and brought it to work. It was delish and an extra bonus? I already had the cookbook that she got the recipe from!

Since then I have made this salsa for cookouts and take it over to dinner parties as an appetizer on numerous occasions. My Mom even makes it too! Of course when this dip gets around my brothers and my son what would typically be enough for a “big party” is devoured in no time. I’m lucky if I get a couple of chips worth!

Southwestern Salsa with Black Beans and Corn

I hosted our neighborhood book club last night and made this salsa. I had a couple of people ask for the recipe…always a good indicator that it was enjoyed!

The yellow peppers were on sale where I shopped so I substituted them for the red pepper. In the past I have used cumin powder instead of cumin seed and it works well. I bought cilantro and used parsley from my herb garden. The lime juice, garlic and red pepper flake…yummmmm…I think I’ll have more for breakfast!

Southwestern Salsa with Black Beans and Corn

 

Recipe from The Ultimate Southern Living Cookbook

Chicken Tortilla Soup

Chicken Tortilla Soup

Chicken and chips and veggies all whirled(is that a word?) together means yummy soupy-goodness. I have seriously made this so many times that I realized not sharing it here was like I was lying to you somehow. I think my spoon goes into my bowl so fast that I just don’t think about you. Sorry. I think.

It easily doubles to feed your 2 brothers, 2 sisters, their husbands and kids…ummm…a big crowd…

Chicken Tortilla Soup

Chicken Tortilla Soup

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 white/yellow onion, roughly chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic, roughly chopped
  • 2 carrots, chopped
  • 3 ribs celery, chopped
  • 1 large zucchini, chopped
  • (you can add a diced red pepper here…I didn’t have one)
  • kosher salt and freshly cracked black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 28-ounce can fire roasted tomatoes
  • 1/4 cup cilantro, chopped
  • pepper-jack cheese
  • 5-6 cups chicken stock
  • 1/2-1 cup crushed tortilla chips
  • 3/4 cup Mont Jack cheese with jalapeno peppers
  • 1-2 roasted chicken breasts or meat from one small rotisserie chicken, pulled
  • 1 cup frozen corn

Toppings:

  • Mont Jack cheese
  • Sour cream
  • Limes
  • Avocado
  • Cilantro
  • more crushed tortilla chips

Method

  • Heat oil in dutch oven or large soup pot over medium heat and add vegetables (next 6 ingredients). Season with salt & pepper. Saute until tender or about 15 minutes.
  • Add the diced tomatoes, seasonings, fresh cilantro and chicken stock. ¬†Bring to a simmer and let cook down for 20 minutes on medium heat.
  • Add the crushed tortillas and simmer for 10 more minutes or until soft.
  • Remove the pot from the heat and using an immersion blender,¬†blend until smooth. Blend it! Trust me. It somehow tastes better when the soup is smooth!
  • Add the shredded, roasted chicken, corn and the¬†cheese and stir around to incorporate.
  • Spoon into bowls and finish with your favorite toppings.

Cilantro Chimichurri

Hello down there cilantro!

cilantro

I picked off your leaves, added spices, vinegar, garlic and EVOO and you became…

A fabulous sauce for my flank steak!

flank steak and Cilantro Chimichurri

SEE!

Cilantro Chimichurri

I have some leftovers and I’m thinking chicken tacos, smeared with chimichurri, lettuce, avocado…food dreaming for another day!

I think I’ve been reading too many books to my nephews!

Cilantro Chimichurri

  • a large bunch of cilantro, about 1 cup packed
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons red or white wine vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano, or 1 tablespoon fresh
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flake, optional
  • kosher salt
  • pepper

Method

Combine cilantro, garlic, vinegar, oregano, cumin, and optional red pepper flake in a food processor. Pulse until fine.
Turn food processor on and stream in olive oil. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Recipe from Eclectic Recipes

Pumpkin Enchiladas

veggies   pumpkin enchilada sauce   chicken, peppers & onions

Mexican food and Fall flavors got married, had a baby and this recipe was born! I found this recipe a few weeks ago and have made it twice already! It satisfies my need for spice, all-things-Fall and is super comforting.

pumpkin enchiladas

I was a little scared at first because when you taste the sauce before it bakes, it’s a little weird…or too pumpkin-y something…but nothing that roasting in the oven for half an hour doesn’t fix!

Besides a little cheese (which isn’t bad for you) these are super healthy. Pumpkin is super high in antioxidants, vitamin A and potassium. Then you also have the added veggie goodness from the onions – pepper – jalapenos ¬†and garlic . Super tasty! You have to try these babies!

pumpkin enchiladas

Pumpkin Enchiladas

For enchilada sauce:

  • 2 jalape√Īos, seeded and chopped
  • 3-4 cloves garlic, peeled
  • 1 cup pumpkin puree ( I used canned organic pumpkin)
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon oregano
  • ¬ĺ cup plain low-fat Greek yogurt
  • ¬Ĺ cup low-sodium chicken stock

For the filling:

  • about 1 pound boneless skinless chicken thighs, diced into small chunks
  • 1 medium onion (such as vidalia), diced
  • 1 orange bell pepper, diced
  • 1-2 tablespoons EVOO
  • salt & pepper, to taste. Also add some of the chili powder, cumin and oregano that went into the sauce for extra flavor!

For assembly and serving:

  • 8 medium- sized corn tortillas (if you use the small size it may take 10-12)
  • 1 1/2 cups grated white cheddar cheese
  • sliced green onions or chives and chopped cilantro, for serving

Method

  • Preheat oven to 425. Add EVOO to a skillet over medium heat. Add onion, bell pepper, chicken, salt and pepper. Saut√© until veggies are soft and chicken in done, about 10-12 minutes. About 2 minutes before its done add¬†some of the chili powder, cumin and oregano that went into the sauce for extra flavor! Set aside.
  • Place chopped jalape√Īo and garlic in a food processor and pulse to mince fine. Add pumpkin puree, chili powder, cumin, oregano, Greek Yogurt, and chicken stock. Pulse to combine. (I used my Vitamix for this step)
  • Pour one cup of sauce in the bottom of an 8√ó13 baking dish.
  • Heat tortillas in the microwave for 45 seconds, until they are warm and pliable. Spoon about ¬Ĺ cup of chicken mixture onto each tortilla. Sprinkle with a little of the shredded cheddar. Roll up each tortilla and lay them in the pan, seam side down.
  • Pour remaining sauce over the tortillas. Top with grated cheddar, and bake for 25-30 minutes, or until cheese is melted.
  • Garnish with green onions and chopped cilantro.

Based on the recipe by How Crazy Cooks

Quinoa, Spinach and Shrimp Salad

I made this salad twice last week. Once as dinner for Devin, Travis and I and then again on Saturday for lunch with my sister Zandria. I thought I would tease you by posting the picture and showing you how good it looks…but I didn’t measure so there isn’t a reliable recipe yet! I tossed cooked quinoa with fresh baby spinach, drained canned pinto beans, diced red onion, cilantro and cooked shrimp. Then I made a¬†vinaigrette with extra virgin olive oil, freshly squeezed lime juice, cumin and chili powder and tossed it over the salad. Serve at room temp. Delish!!

Quinoa, Spinach and Shrimp Salad

Secret Sauce Turkey Chili

diced onion and garlic and local ground turkey

I know this might sound silly but I do think this chili is worthy of the “secret sauce” title I gave it. I was browsing the cupboards and spotted the diced green chilies which I usually add to white chicken chili. When I opened the green chilies they reminded me of green salsa verde that was open in the fridge so I decided to add that too.

I think the heat of the chilies and the tang of the salsa verde made this chili unique annnnddddd…I think worthy of a chili cooking challenge or cook-off. Our neighborhood had a get-together around Christmas and they needed at least 10 people to bring chili. One person thought it would funny to buy a lot chili from Wendy’s, add it to a crockpot and call it theirs (they owned up to it later when a few people said it tasted like Wendy’s!). I’ll have to make this chili of our neighborhood has the same event this year!

Use good organic ingredients

If you win any awards with my chili recipe all I want in return is a comment on my blog thanking me! hahahaha!

Secret sauce turkey chili

Secret Sauce Turkey Chili

  • 1 large yellow onion, diced
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1.3 pounds ground turkey (preferably organic and local)
  • 28 ounce can diced fire-roasted tomatoes
  • 30 ounce can cannellini beans, drained
  • 15 ounce can black beans, drained
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1 cup salsa verde
  • 1 small can diced green chilies
  • 2 tablespoons chili powder
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon shallot salt (or onion salt)
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper (or 1/4 teaspoon if you like it less spicy)
  • 1 1/2 cups vegetable broth

Method

  • In a dutch oven add a little extra virgin olive oil, then the turkey, onions and garlic. Cook over medium heat stirring and breaking up the ground turkey until it is cooked through and the onions are tender.
  • Add the remaining ingredients and stir. Cook over med-low heat with the lid partially covering the top. Simmer for an hour and a half stirring as needed.
  • I like to top chili with a scoop of light sour cream and shredded sharp white cheddar cheese.

Baked Chicken Taquitos

Baked Chicken Taquitos

Here’s a peek inside my kitchen to see what we ate on Friday night. Travis was working/playing in the garage, Devin was out of school for the week and I began my spring break (otherwise known as my-last-spring-break-ever-because-I-graduate-in-December!). Time for fun to eat Mexican-get-the-party-started-food!

When I¬†originally found this recipe I loved the result so much that I shared it with my sister Zan. She has made them multiple times and so have I but this is the first time I’ve taken pics.

We also made fresh salsa in my new Vitamix!

Homemade salsa

These are so fun to eat and amazingly delicious that I need to remember to make them as a party food sometime. I think you could slice them in half on the diagonal and they would be even more bite size and party friendly.

Baked Chicken Taquitos

Baked Chicken Taquitos

  • 3 ounces organic cream cheese, at room temp
  • 1/4 cup salsa verde
  • juice of 1/2 lime
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1/4 cup finely diced red onion
  • 2 cups cooked and shredded chicken (I used part of a rotisserie)
  • 1/2 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese
  • 1/2 cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese
  • 12-16 (6-inch) organic corn tortillas

Method

  • Preheat oven to 425 F. ¬†Spray a rimmed baking sheet with cooking spray.
  • In a large bowl, stir together the cream cheese, salsa, lime juice, chile powder, cumin, cayenne pepper, onion powder, garlic, parsley, scallions, and 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt. ¬†Add the chicken and cheeses and stir until evenly distributed. ¬†Season the mixture to taste with salt and pepper.
  • Place 2 tortillas at a time on a microwave safe plate and cover with a damp paper towel. ¬†Microwave for 25 seconds, or until the tortillas are soft and pliable. ¬†Spoon 2-3 tablespoons of the filling onto the lower third of each tortilla, and roll tightly. ¬†Place seam side-down on the prepared baking sheet. ¬†Repeat with the remaining tortillas and filling.
  • Spray the taquitos with cooking spray and sprinkle with kosher salt. ¬†Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until the tortillas are crisp and golden. ¬†(I loved them served with sour cream!)

Adapted from Pink Parsley Blog

Tri Tip Tacos (Slow Cooker)

Rump roast

I finally made a roast that I love! Last summer I made a pork butt roast with my sister Zandria. It had tons of ingredients. It was too big for crock pot and we (well… she) had to cut the meat into chunks so it would fit. The end result was full of fat pieces that we had to pick out and the meat wasn’t excellent for all the work required.

This roast is a different story. Mix the spice rub. Sprinkle and pat it into the meat. Let the meat rest for a few minutes while you chop onions and garlic, open a can of tomatoes and measure a cup of beef broth.

Rump roast and pickled red onions

Devin ate his inside of warmed corn tortillas and piled up with good toppings. I tasted the meat with the tortillas but thought it was better by itself on a plate and topped with the avocado,¬†jalapenos, cilantro, a drizzle of sour cream and the¬†pickled red onions I made (thinly sliced red onion, Bragg apple cider vinegar, splash of water and salt and pepper…let it sit for 5 hours in the fridge). Basically the same stuff Devin put on his taco!

The meat pulled apart basically by itself. It’s juicy and flavorful. And most importantly is easy to make and has literally no fat in it at all!!

tacos

Tri Tip Tacos

  • 1 tsp kosher salt
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/2 tsp freshly cracked black pepper
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 2 1/2 lbs tri-tip roast (our market had Hereford Rump Roast and the butcher said it was very similar to tri tip)
  • 14 ounces tomatoes and green chilies (I used Muir Glen¬†fire roasted diced tomatoes with green chilies)
  • 1 yellow onion (I diced the onion)
  • 2 cloves garlic (I minced the garlic)
  • 1 cup beef stock
  • tortillas as needed (I used corn)
  • toppings include: shredded cheese, salsa, pickled¬†jalapenos, sour cream, lettuce, limes, cilantro, red onion, avocado

Method

  • In a small bowl, combine the salt, paprika, cumin, pepper, garlic powder, and cayenne pepper.
  • Liberally season the tri-tip roast with the spices and let it sit for 15 minutes.
  • Place the roast into your slow cooker and cover it with the diced tomatoes and chilies, onions, garlic cloves and beef stock.
  • Set your slow cooker to low and let it cook for 8-10 hours until the meat is easily shredded.
  • Remove the meat from the slow cooker and give it a rough chop and use as needed for tacos.

Recipe from What’s Gaby Cooking

Salsa Verde Sour Cream Enchiladas

We spent a couple days in Virginia Beach this week. Two days of boating, playing in the water and soaking up the sun. We ate brunch at our favorite-brunch-place-in-the-world, Citrus. Everytime we go to Virginia Beach we HAVE to eat there. It’s a great diner atmosphere with awesome brunch selections (and lunch but we always get breakfast). I had their Beach Benedict which has¬†avocado, tomato and spinach in place of the typical ham in an eggs benedict. The rest of it is traditional with a crispy english muffin, poached eggs and hollandaise sauce….served with a side of yummy grits!!

One night we ate at another one of our favorite spots, Tautogs. They have amazing seafood and fun bartenders. We always eat at the bar when we go there.  One of the bartenders plays music just like Travis does so they had plenty to chat about. I was busy sipping on a pomegranate martini and eating up their Tau-Pho. The Pho had tons of veggies (baby bok choy, squash, zucchini, onions, jalapenos, peppers, cilantro) and had TONS of shrimp it in. It was like 95 degrees outside and I was eating hot soup and sweating but it was WORTH IT!!!

We got home yesterday afternoon and I enjoyed a little “me” time. I worked out, showered, got my nails done, went grocery shopping and after cooking dinner I went over to my friends Brian and Jes’ house. ¬†They live in my neighborhood so I just had a walk around the corner (bonus)! They made samples of super-healthy smoothies with their Vitamix blender for us to try and we washed those down with glasses of wine. Super fun time!

I have made this recipe once before about a month ago for my brother and my Dad’s birthday (their birthdays are one day apart on the 24th and 25th of May). Due to the commotion of having guests over and cooking at the same time I didn’t take any pictures. The original recipe that I made from Sing for Your Supper blog made enough enchilada sauce and chicken filling to fill two 13×9 dishes (about 20-22 ¬†enchiladas). That was nice the first time I made these since I had 9 people to feed but I had to cut it down for just the 3 of us. This recipe makes enough enchiladas to fill one 13×9 dish.

Devin gave them his signature thumps up and Travis said they were really, really good. These enchiladas are a little spicy from the jalapeno and cayenne pepper, creamy from the sour cream and tangy from the salsa verde. I can’t wait to have leftovers for lunch today ūüôā

Salsa Verde Sour Cream Enchiladas

Slightly Adapted From  Sing For Your Supper Blog

Ingredients

  • 2 chicken breasts, shredded (I used a rotisserie chicken and saved the legs and wings for the guys to snack on later)
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 jalapeno pepper, seeds removed, minced
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 tablespoon flour
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 1 cup light sour cream
  • 1 cup (or half of a 16 ounce jar) of Medium Salsa Verde, I used Herdez
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne
  • 2 tablespoons dried cilantro (I forgot to buy fresh)
  • kosher salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
  • 1/2 cup each sharp cheddar and monterey jack cheese
  • 10-12 flour tortillas

Method

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Heat large non-stick skillet and spray with non-stick olive oil spray, then add butter. When the pan heats and butter melts add the onion, garlic and jalapeno and saute until soft. Add flour and stir constantly for 2 minutes. Whisk in chicken stock until smooth and bubbly. Add cumin, cayenne, salt, pepper and cilantro and stir. Then add in salsa and sour cream. Let it come to a simmer and then turn down to low while you prepare the tortillas.
  • Spray a 13×9 baking dish with non-stick olive oil spray. Add 2 ladle-fulls of sauce to the bottom of the dish. Add some chicken and cheese to each tortilla and roll up. Place in the pan seam-side down. Pour the remaining sauce over the enchiladas and top with remaining cheese. Bake for 25 minutes or until bubbly and slightly browned. Serves 3-4 with leftovers.

Curried Egg Salad

I have been in love with Bon Appetit ever since last year when Gwyneth Paltrow was featured on the cover. I immediately subscribed and have made many recipes from Bon Appetit since then. Now I will be able to share them on my blog which is so exciting! By the way my favorite recipe from the Gwyneth Paltrow edition was the recipe for Grilled Chicken with Peach BBQ Sauce. I’ve made it multiple times and as soon as there are some good local peaches in season here I will certainly make as post about it!

In the new May 2012 magazine a recipe for Curried Egg Salad¬†caught my eye. I had not made regular “old-fashioned” egg salad since I catered a friends baby shower a couple of years ago and the idea of adding curry made it sound like a perfect weekend brunch food. The recipe only called for 4 eggs and with the 2 hungry boys in my house I decided to double the recipe.

The only thing I changed was that I used Vegenaise instead of mayo. I know, don’t make fun of me, I used an egg-less vegan mayo in egg salad. I prefer the taste of it to regular mayo…that’s the only good reason I can give you! I also forgot the scallions so I had to leave those out.

Curried Egg Salad (adapted from Bon Appetit)

  • 1/2 cup Vegenaise
  • 2 small shallots, minced
  • 3 tablespoons¬†apple cider vinegar
  • 3 teaspoons¬†Dijon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon curry powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon¬†ground cumin
  • 8 large hard-boiled eggs, chopped
  • 1¬†medium Granny Smith apple, peeled and cut into 1/8-inch cubes
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
  • Whisk Vegenaise, shallot, apple cider vinegar, mustard, curry powder, and cumin in a large bowl. Fold in eggs and apple. Season with kosher salt and freshly ground pepper. I served mine on a toasted whole-wheat english muffin.