If you took a quick glance at my most recent posts, you might think I’m all about sweets and chicken. While I’m not going to confirm or deny that may be true, I do make other recipes as well. You might even say somewhat healthy ones every once in a while too. So for my vegetarian friends out there, I have not forsaken you. (Yes, I’m looking at you Sue T.!)
This soup recipe can be altered to whichever vegetables you have or that are in season. It is called vegetable soup afterall. I used what I had on hand. The flavor of the soup was reminiscent of a chicken tortilla soup without the chicken or tortillas. And be forewarned, this recipe makes a lot of servings (6-8) for you to share on a cold winter’s day.
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 1/2 bell peppers, diced (I used 1/2 each of an orange, red and yellow bell peppers)
2 carrots, diced
1/2 red onion, diced
3 cloves minced garlic
2 tablespoons ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper
2 cups diced roma tomatoes
2 cups corn kernels (fresh or frozen or 1 can of corn)
1 can black beans
1 can (4 ounce) diced green chile peppers
6 cups vegetable or chicken stock
1-2 zucchinis, sliced
lime wedges or lime juice
Mexican crema or sour cream
Heat olive oil over medium heat in a large soup pot.
Add bell peppers, carrots and onions to pot. Cook for 5 minutes or until tender. Stir occasionally.
Add in minced garlic, cumin and cayenne. Stir and cook for a minute.
Add in tomatoes, corn, black beans, diced green chiles and vegetable stock.
Turn the heat up to high and bring to a boil.
Lower the heat, cover, and simmer for 15 minutes.
Add in zucchini.
Re-cover and simmer for another 10 more minutes, or until the zucchini is tender.
Do you need a quick and easy side dish to take to an office party or family gathering? I’m almost embarrassed to share this recipe because it’s really so simple and all the flavor comes from a store bought pesto sauce. But, hey you had to cook the pasta and cut up everything yourself.
1 pound rainbow rotini pasta (or whatever shape of your choice)
8 ounces cubed Colby Jack or Mozzarella cheese
1 cucumber, diced
8 ounces grape tomatoes, sliced in half
3.8 ounce can of sliced black olives, drained
3/4-1 cup pesto or Italian dressing of your choice
8 ounces hard salami cubes (this is optional. I didn’t have any on hand but it tastes wonderful in the salad.)
Cook pasta according to package directions. Chill in ice bath and remove once pasta is cool.
While pasta is cooking, cut up cheese, cucumber, tomatoes, and salami if using.
Add all ingredients into a large bowl and stir in pesto. Mix well.
Chill in refrigerator for 30 minutes or overnight for the next day.
Everyday is taco day in my house. But how about a little sweet and spicy kick? Tex Mex meets Hawaiian and this is the end result. The slow cooker does most of the work, you get all the credit. Can’t beat that!
4 pounds pork shoulder
1 cup barbecue sauce
1/2 cup brown sugar
6 tablespoons fresh lime juice (3 limes)
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
2 tablespoons chili powder
2 tablespoons garlic powder
1 can (20 ounces) pineapple chunks or fresh if available
1 small white or red onion, diced
1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and finely diced
2 tomatoes, diced
1 cup cilantro, chopped
1/2 teaspoon crushed red peppers (optional)
1 cup shredded red cabbage
20 small corn tortillas
In a 6 quart slow cooker add pork shoulder.
In a large bowl, add barbecue sauce, brown sugar, lime juice (reserve 1 tablespoon for the pineapple pico de gallo), cayenne pepper, chili powder and garlic powder. Mix together to form a paste and spread evenly over pork shoulder.
Cook on low for 8 to 9 hours; or you can cook on high for 5 to 6 hours. Shred when done cooking.
When your pork is ready, assemble the pineapple pico de gallo.
Slice the pineapple chunks into smaller pieces and place in large bowl. Add the diced onions, jalapeno pepper, tomatoes, cilantro and reserved 1 tablespoon of lime juice. If you can handle the extra heat, add the crushed red peppers to the bowl.
Top your tortillas with pulled pork, pineapple pico de gallo and shredded cabbage.
Garnish with lime wedges.
You can also change this recipe into pulled pork sliders by substituting Hawaiian bread rolls for the corn tortillas.
I’ve been on a Mexican food kick lately. Whenever I eat something at any restaurant, I always think to myself, “I wonder what they used to make this?” I’ve had these beans numerous times at my favorite Mexican restaurant. And I finally decided to try to recreate their recipe, but of course make it as easy and simple as possible. They turned out delicious! I hope you enjoy these as much as I did. For my vegetarian friends, substitute with seitan bacon or use a few drops of liquid smoke and use vegetable broth instead of beef broth.
4-5 slices of bacon, chopped into small strips
1 medium red onion, diced
1 jalapeno, seeded and finely diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 cup cilantro, diced
2 tomatoes, diced
2 (15 ounce) cans pinto beans, undrained
1 1/2 cups beef broth
Over medium high heat, add bacon pieces to large saucepan. Stir bacon pieces 2-3 minutes until mostly cooked. Drain excess fat from pan.
Add diced onion, jalapeno, garlic, cilantro and tomatoes to bacon in pan. Stir until combined.
Next add pinto beans and beef broth. Stir well and bring liquid to a boil.
Reduce heat to low and simmer for 1 hour.
Garnish with additional cilantro and serve as either the main course or a side dish.
Chicken and rice are my favorite “go to” ingredients. There are so many ways to prepare the two. For this recipe we are taking the fabulous bold flavors of the Southwest and going Tex Mex style. This is my kind of comfort food wrapped up in one colorful, piping hot bowl of deliciousness. And for my vegetarian friends out there, just skip the chicken.
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 chicken breast, pounded thin and cut into small chunks
These were so much fun to make. If you have young children and want to introduce them to cooking I think these would be an ideal beginner’s dish. There are so many different variations you can make depending on what ingredients you like or what you have on hand. I made vegetarian ones and for my son I did a take on a Denver omelette using ham, cheese, bell pepper and green onion.
6 eggs (will make 12 egg cups)
1/2 cup milk
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon fresh ground pepper
FOR VEGETARIAN EGG CUPS:
1/2 small red onion, finely diced
1 Roma tomato, diced
2 large shiitake mushrooms, diced
1/2 red bell pepper, diced
3/4 cup baby spinach, diced
FOR HAM AND CHEESE EGG CUPS:
1/2 cup diced ham
12 tablespoons shredded cheese, divided (I used cheddar and mozzarella mix)
1/2 red bell pepper, diced
2 green onions, diced
Preheat oven to 350 F degrees. Meanwhile, generously spray muffin pans with nonstick cooking spray. Set aside. (For easier clean up, use baking cups instead of cooking spray.)
Break eggs into a large bowl or 4 cup measuring cup. Add milk, salt and pepper. Whisk until ingredients are combined.
Add equal amounts of your vegetables (or ham and cheese) into each cup of your muffin pan.
Pour in egg mixture into each cup about 3/4 of the way up for each.
Bake egg cups for 25 minutes, or until toothpick inserted into center comes up clean.
Let cool for a few minutes before taking egg cups out of pans.
Serve with your favorite condiments or none at all.
You can keep these in an air tight container for up to 4 days. Reheat in the microwave.