Sunday, April 26, 2015

baja shrimp tacos... 20 minutes

the goods:

1 pound shrimp, peeled, deveined and tail removed
2 teaspoons olive oil
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon chili powder
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/4 cup mayonnaise
1/4 cup sour cream
1 whole chipotle in adobo pepper, chopped
1 teaspoon adobo sauce
1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
1 small tomato, diced
1 avocado, sliced
1/2 cabbage, sliced
flour tortillas
toppings: avocado slices, diced tomato, hot sauce and lime wedges, for serving

In a large plastic zip-top bag, combine garlic powder, chili powder, black pepper, cayenne pepper, shrimp, and 1 teaspoon olive oil. Mix thoroughly and marinate for 20 minutes. In a small bowl combine mayo, sour cream, chipotle pepper, adobo sauce, and lime juice. Mix well and toss with sliced cabbage; set aside. In a large skillet heat remaining teaspoon of oil over medium heat. Saute shrimp until cooked through, about 5 minutes. To serve: fill flour tortillas with shrimp, cabbage, tomatoes, avocadoes, and a drizzling of hot sauce.

Friday, April 24, 2015

crockpot buffalo chicken pasta... 5 to 9 hours

the goods:

3-4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
3 cups chicken broth
1/2 cup buffalo wing sauce (Frank's), divided
1 tablespoon ranch dressing mix
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon celery salt
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon pepper
8 ounces cream cheese
1 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese
1 tablespoon cornstarch plus 1 tablespoon water
16 ounces linguine noodles
cilantro leaves for garnish

Place chicken, broth, 1/4 cup buffalo sauce, and seasonings in crockpot. Top with cream cheese and shredded cheese. Cover and cook on high for 4 hours or low for 8 hours. When chicken is fully cooked, remove to a separate bowl and shred with two forks. Add remaining 1/4 cup buffalo sauce to chicken and toss to coat; set aside. Whisk together cornstarch and water in a small bowl and add to sauce in crockpot. Use a whisk and stir until cream cheese and cheese are all combined and smooth. Break noodles in half and place in crockpot. Top with chicken and cover. Turn crockpot on high for 30-60 minutes until noodles are fully cooked, stir 3-4 times during cooking. Season with pepper and garnish with cilantro and serve immediately.

Friday, April 17, 2015

chicken nachos... 20 minutes

the goods:

4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, pounded to an even thickness
2 tablespoons taco seasoning
2 tablespoons chili powder
1/4 cup olive oil
1 can (8 ounces) tomato sauce
2 cups hot water
several dashes hot sauce
round tortilla chips
Cheddar jack cheese, freshly grated
optional toppings: pico de gallo, salsa, sour cream, sliced black olives, sliced pickled jalapenos, guacamole, cilantro leaves, etc.

Sprinkle both sides of the chicken breasts with taco seasoning and chili powder. Heat the olive oil in a heavy skillet over medium heat. Cook the chicken breasts on both sides until deep golden and totally done in the middle, about 4 minutes per side. Remove from skillet and let rest for a few minutes. Whisk the tomato sauce and hot water into the skillet, add the hot sauce and bring to a gentle boil. Reduce the heat to low and keep warm. Shred the chicken using two forks and transfer shredded chicken to the sauce. Toss to coat in the sauce and allow to simmer for a few minutes.
To build nachos; start with a layer of chips, sprinkle with meat mixture and then cheese. Continue with another layer of chips, meat, and cheese, add a third layer if desired. Place plate in a 350 degree oven for a minute or two until cheese is totally melted. Pile on the toppings and serve! (with napkins)

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

chicken enchiladas with homemade red sauce... 1 hour

the goods:

homemade red sauce:
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 tablespoons flour
4 tablespoons chili powder
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon cumin
1/4 teaspoon oregano
2 cups chicken stock or broth

2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 small white onion, peeled and diced
3 boneless skinless chicken breasts, diced into 1/2-inch pieces
1 can (4 ounces) diced green chiles
1 can (15.5 ounces) black beans, rinsed and drained
8-10 small flour tortillas
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1 cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese
1 cup pepper jack cheese
chopped fresh cilantro, for serving

Make the sauce: Heat oil in a small saucepan over medium-high heat. Add flour and stir together over the heat for 1 minute. Stir in the seasonings, then gradually add in the stock/broth, whisking constantly to remove lumps. Reduce heat and simmer for 10-15 minutes until thick.

In a large skillet, heat oil over medium-high heat. Add onion and saute for 3 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add diced chicken and green chiles, and season with salt and pepper. Saute for 6-8 minutes, stirring occasionally, or until the chicken is cooked through. Remove heat and set aside.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Set up an assembly line with your tortillas, sauce, beans, chicken mixture, and cheeses (you can mix the cheeses together). Lay out a tortilla, and spread a spoonful of sauce over the surface of the tortilla. Add the beans in a line down the middle of the tortilla, then add a spoonful of the chicken mixture, then sprinkle with a small handful of cheese. Roll up tortilla and place in a greased 9-by-13-inch baking dish. Repeat with remaining ingredients. Spread remaining enchilada sauce on top of the tortillas, and sprinkle with remaining shredded cheese.
Bake, uncovered, for 20 minutes. Garnish with cilantro and serve!

Monday, April 13, 2015

chili-lime chicken burgers... 15 minutes

the goods:

1 pound ground chicken
2 scallions, chopped
1/2 red bell-pepper, seeded and diced
1 tablespoon cilantro, minced
1/2 teaspoon season salt
1/8 teaspoon black pepper
1/2 lime, juiced
4 teaspoons olive oil
4 sliced pepper jack cheese
4 hamburger buns
lettuce and sliced tomato for serving, along with any other desired condiments

Preheat grill.
In a medium bowl, combine the chicken, scallions, red bell pepper, cilantro, season salt, pepper, and lime juice. Mix to incorporate. Form into 4 patties and rub them with olive oil so they don't stick to the grill.
Brush your hot grill to clean the grates, then cook burgers for 3 minutes, flip and cook for 5 minutes more. In the last minute, top with cheese slices and cover grill to allow cheese to melt. Serve on buns with desired toppings and condiments.

Thursday, April 9, 2015

beef with peppers... 30 minutes

the goods:

1 pound flank steak, sliced very thin against the grain
1/2 cup soy sauce
3 tablespoons Sherry
2 tablespoons brown sugar
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 teaspoon red chili paste
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 yellow onion, sliced
2 red bell peppers, cored, and sliced into rings
1 tablespoon diced fresh jalapeno (seeds removed)
8 ounces lo mein noodles
cilantro leaves, for serving

In a large zip-top bag, combine soy sauce, Sherry, brown sugar, cornstarch, ginger, garlic, and chili paste. Place the sliced beef in the mixture and toss to coat. Set aside.
Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large skillet or wok over medium-high heat. When it is very hot, add the onions and cook until soft and translucent. Transfer to a plate. In same skillet add bell peppers and jalapeno, cook for a couple of minutes, until peppers have char marks. Transfer to plate with onions.
Add the remaining tablespoon oil to the skillet and add 1/3 of the meat mixture, cook for about 1 minute or two and transfer to plate. Repeat with remaining meat until all brown.
In a large pot of boiling water cook noodles according to package instructions.
Reduce heat to low. Add meat onions, peppers to skillet and toss to combine. Pour in remaining sauce (marinade) and stir. Allow to simmer on low for a few minutes so that sauce will slowly thicken. Turn off heat.
Add drained noodles to beef and peppers and toss with sauce. Top with cilantro leaves and serve.

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

sticky chicken fingers salad... 30 minutes

the goods:

1/3 cup Frank's original hot sauce
1 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup water
8 frozen breaded chicken fingers, cooked according to package instructions
2 romaine lettuce hearts, chopped
3/4 cup dried cranberries
1/2 cup shredded carrots
1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese
homemade ranch dressing, for serving

Bake frozen chicken fingers according to package instructions.
In a medium saucepan, over medium heat, combine the hot sauce, brown sugar, and water. Cook, stirring, until the sugar dissolves and mixture begins to boil. Remove from heat and let stand a couple of minutes to thicken slightly. Place the cooked, breaded chicken fingers in a bowl and pour sauce over them. Turn the chicken fingers with tongs to get completely coated with sauce. Cut chicken fingers into bite-sized pieces. On individual plates or in bowls, layer lettuce, cranberries, carrots, and cheese. Top with chicken fingers and drizzle with ranch dressing.