Tamale Pie

This is similar to my mom’s tamale pie, in style anyway, but with my own flavors. Great on a rainy day or just a cold day.

Note at the bottom tells how to make this dish vegetarian. 🙂

Ingredients
1 pound hamburger, browned
2 cups kidney beans, canned or dried
2 cups frozen corn, thawed
1 cup onion, diced
1 can diced tomatoes
1 can beef broth
1 cup cornmeal, mixed with broth
1/4 cup canned jalapeños, diced with juice
3 tablespoons worcestershire sauce
1 can medium pitted olives, drained
5 large garlic cloves, sliced thin
1 tablespoon cumin powder
1 tablespoon chili powder

Garnishes:
sour cream
grated cheese
sliced green onions

Quick method:
In a large pot combine everything, use the canned beans instead of the dried, and cook on medium until heated through. Taste for seasoning. Serve and top with sour cream, cheese and green onions. My Hubby likes eating his with corn chips, just an idea. 😉

Long method:
I’ll do this when I have to work and want to have this mostly ready when I get home.
In your crock pot combine dried beans, washed and picked through, onion, tomatoes, broth, jalapeños, cumin, chili powder and worcestershire sauce. Stir well and set on high for 6-8 hours. Brown hamburger, mix in corn and garlic and stir into the beans in the crock pot. Mix the cornmeal with some broth (or beer, if you like) until it’s a loose paste. Mix into the beans until there are no lumps. Cook on high, covered, for another 30 minutes, then check the seasoning. Serve like above, sour cream, cheese, green onions and chips, if you like.

Note: You can make this vegetarian if you leave out the hamburger and the beef broth, you can just double the beans and use vegetable broth instead.

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Last Minute Fajita Style Chicken Dinner

I’m really more of a last minute cook. I don’t like planning ahead. I’d much rather look at what I have and throw something together. Most of the time it turns out to be better than a recipe I’ve followed.

Last night this was the case. It was 6:00, my husband was due home from work shortly. No dinner plans really. I took a quick inventory of what I had and threw this together. It took a total of about 20 minutes to cook and it was delicious!

Ingredients
1 pound chicken breasts, sliced thin
1 cup sliced onion
2 cups sliced bell pepper
1 can fire roasted tomatoes, drained, save the juice
1 small can diced green chiles
1 tablespoon chili powder
1 tablespoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon oil
1 cup medium grain rice
2 cups water
1 cup grated cheese (cheddar is better)
a couple dollops of cream cheese
hot sauce (optional)

In a small pot with a lid add rice, water, 1/2 teaspoon salt, juice from the tomatoes and 1 tablespoon diced green chiles. Bring to a boil and cover, turning heat down to low, cooking for 15 minutes. When done leave lid on until you are ready to serve.

In a pan on high heat warm oil and add chicken and chili powder and garlic powder. Toss until chicken is cooked through. Remove from pan and set aside. Add to pan peppers and onions, tossing until the edges start to cook. Add tomatoes and green chiles and chicken. Toss together and reduce heat to low. Cook for 5 more minutes. Serve over rice with cheese and sour cream. You can add hot sauce if you think it needs it.

Taco Salad

This one is simple to put together and pretty fast to make. The greatest part is you can add anything, meat, beans, cheese, whatever you want. And it’s a good way to use leftovers and to get a lot of veggies in your diet. These ingredients is just what I usually put into mine, you can add whatever you want. Tonight I’m going to add leftover tri-tip to the salad.

Ingredients
1 head of iceburg lettuce, sliced thin
1 carrot, grated
1 cucumber, diced
2 tomatoes, diced
1 green onion, sliced thin
1 cup shredded cheese
1 avocado, diced
2 cups meat diced (your choice)
1 can kidney or black beans, drained and rinsed
2 cups crushed tortilla chips
1 lime cut into wedges
1 cup sour cream
1 cup medium or hot salsa
hot sauce (optional)
cilantro leaves (optional)

In a LARGE bowl layer lettuce, carrot, cucumber, tomatoes, green onion, avocado, cheese, meat and beans. Divide into serving bowls, I usually get about 4 servings out of this amount of salad. Top each with tortilla chips and a lime wedge on the side. Mix together sour cream and salsa. Pour sauce mix onto salads. Top with cilantro leaves if you like and of course you can add extra hot sauce if you want it.

Chicken Enchiladas

This is a super tasty, easy, quick meal to make if you have left over chicken. If you don’t you can just cook it in a pan with a little bit of water and shred it after it’s cooked. It’s probably not authentic but it is tasty and easy and quick and can satisfy a Mexican food craving. 🙂

Ingredients
8 flour tortillas, gordita size
3 cups shredded chicken
2 cups shredded cheese plus 1/2 cup*
1 16 oz can green enchilada sauce
sour cream, shredded lettuce, tomatoes

Heat oven to 350. Combine chicken and cheese and about 1/2 cup enchilada sauce. Lay out the tortillas and put about 2/3 cup of the chicken mix into each and roll up. Place in a greased oven safe dish. Cover with green sauce. Bake for 20-30 minutes or until the sauce is bubbly. Remove from oven and top with the 1/2 cup cheese. Let sit for 10 minutes and serve with lettuce, sour cream and tomatoes.

*You can grate your own cheese or do like I do and buy a bag of a shredded cheese mix. I find that the shredded cheese mix is worth it since it has different kinds of cheese in it and isn’t much more than the block cheese.

**And if you want a creamier filling you can mix in 4 oz of cream cheese to the chicken and cheese and sauce mixture before you roll it in the tortillas.