One Pot Chicken and Rice

Tex Mex Chicken and RiceChicken 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.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 chicken breast, pounded thin and cut into small chunks
  • 1 small red onion
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 red or orange bell pepper, diced
  • 24 ounce can of crushed tomatoes
  • 2 cups chicken or vegetable broth
  • 1 cup frozen corn kernels
  • 1 can (14 ounces) black beans, drained
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons Morton & Bassett Mexican Blend seasoning (cumin, garlic, onion, paprika, pepper and thyme)
  • 1/4 teaspoon of cayenne pepper
  • 1 tablespoon light brown sugar
  • 1 cup white rice
  • 1 cup shredded Mexican blend cheese

DIRECTIONS:

  1. In a large skillet, heat olive oil over medium high heat.
  2. Add chicken pieces and cook each side for 2 minutes or until cooked through. Remove chicken onto a plate and set aside.
  3. Add onions, bell pepper and garlic to skillet. Cook 1-2 minutes until onions and bell pepper are softened.
  4. Add crushed tomatoes, broth, corn, and black beans into skillet.
  5. Next add Mexican blend seasoning, cayenne pepper and brown sugar.
  6. Bring to a simmer and then add rice.
  7. Stir, cover with a lid and turn down heat to medium low.
  8. Cook for about 15 to 18 minutes until rice is cooked and most of liquid is absorbed.
  9. Add chicken and stir.
  10. Sprinkle with cheese and cover skillet with lid for 3 to 5 minutes for cheese to melt.
  11. Serve garnished with green onions or cilantro pieces.

Tex Mex Chicken and Rice Skillet

 

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Egg Cups

Egg Cups PlatedThese 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.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 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

Egg Cups 1

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

DIRECTIONS:

  1. 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.)
  2. Break eggs into a large bowl or 4 cup measuring cup. Add milk, salt and pepper. Whisk until ingredients are combined.
  3. Add equal amounts of your vegetables (or ham and cheese) into each cup of your muffin pan.
  4. Pour in egg mixture into each cup about 3/4 of the way up for each.

     

  5. Bake egg cups for 25 minutes, or until toothpick inserted into center comes up clean.Egg Cups 6
  6. Let cool for a few minutes before taking egg cups out of pans.Egg Cups 7
  7. 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.

Egg Cups Plated 2

Chinese Style Stuffed Bell Peppers

Chinese Stuffed PeppersEver since he was a baby, my son has been a picky eater. The only way I could get him to eat any type of meatloaf is if I formed the meatloaf into meatballs or stuffed it into vegetables. And it all had to be covered in some kind of sauce or gravy. Yet, he would eat most vegetables, but not any kind of meatloaf! Don’t get me started! Thus, this recipe was born.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 pound ground pork
  • 3 stalks green onions, finely diced; plus 1 stalk regularly diced for garnish
  • 3 ounces of shiitake mushrooms, finely diced
  • 1 can (8 ounce) water chestnuts, finely diced
  • 1 egg
  • 5 teaspoons cornstarch, divided 2 teaspoons for meat; 3 teaspoons for gravy
  • 1/8 teaspoon minced ginger or ginger powder
  • 2 teaspoons minced garlic or garlic powder
  • 1 tablespoon sugar divided, 1/2 tablespoon for meat; 1/2 tablespoon for gravy
  • 1/2 tablespoon sesame oil
  • 1 tablespoon light soy sauce
  • 1/2 tablespoon Chinese cooking wine (optional)
  • 3 1/2 tablespoons black bean and garlic sauce, divided 1/2 tablespoon for meat; 3 tablespoons for gravy (can be found in most International Aisles at local grocery store)
  • 2 large bell peppers (your choice of colors)
  • 3 cups chicken stock
  • 1/2 cup cold waterChinese Stuffed Peppers 1

DIRECTIONS:

In a large bowl, place ground pork, green onions, mushrooms, water chestnuts, egg, 2 teaspoons cornstarch, ginger, garlic, 1/2 tablespoon of sugar, sesame oil, soy sauce, cooking wine, and 1/2 tablespoon black bean sauce. Mix well. Set aside. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.Chinese Stuffed Peppers 2

Cut bell peppers in half and discard seeds and white membrane. In a large pot of boiling water, blanch bell peppers for 5 minutes. Remove bell pepper halves from boiling water and place in casserole dish.Chinese Stuffed Peppers 3

Stuff bell pepper halves with meat mixture. Be sure to pat down, so peppers are well stuffed.Chinese Stuffed Peppers 4

Add chicken stock to a small pot. Turn heat to medium high. While waiting for chicken stock to boil, make a slurry in a small cup or bowl with 3 teaspoons cornstarch and 1/2 cup cold water, mix well. When stock comes to a boil, add 3 tablespoons black bean garlic sauce and 1/2 tablespoon sugar and stir. Then add slurry of cornstarch and water. Stir until gravy has thickened to consistency of syrup. Turn off heat.Chinese Stuffed Peppers 5

Pour gravy (saving 1/4 cup for garnish) over stuffed bell peppers and into casserole dish. Cover casserole dish with foil and bake in oven for 45 minutes. Carefully remove foil when done. Garnish tops of bell peppers with green onions and reserved gravy.Chinese Stuffed Peppers

Serve with rice to complete your meal.Chinese Stuffed Peppers Plated