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Posts Tagged ‘Tex-Mex’

VeganMoFo 2009

Sorry I don’t have anything new for you today (well, it may be new to some)…but here’s what I posted a year ago on this date: Tex-Mex Pizza Verde.  I’m working on some really nummy treats, so bear with me… For now, let’s reminisce about days of pizzas past.

texmex pizza4

Happy Cooking!

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tomato soup1What does one feed to a incredulous omni or contravening family member? What does a vegan tell a skeptical omni is an acceptable dish they can make for you to eat at a gathering, without stressing the omni out with ‘special vegan ingredients’? What are some quick and simple ideas that could have even the most cynical guest asking for the recipe at the end of the meal?

From the omni perspective (because maybe there’s some omni’s out there reading this and have a vegan friend that they want to feed), what does one serve to satisfy the lone vegan at the table – that consists of more than a plate of leafy greens and some olive oil? What can an omni include in their diet to make themselves healthier without stressing over buying a whole slew of ‘strange and bizarre‘ items that they can’t find at the grocery store?

Ok, I think you get the idea of what I’ll be discussing in this post – quick and easy dishes, sure to please anyone regardless of their chosen dietary habits, which use only items that can be found at any grocery store!

baked rice casserole9Tex-Mex Rice4Green_Enchiladas2

Here’s a few items that have been field-tested at many joint omni/vegan tables 😉

Dad-inspired Baked Rice Casserole, burrito style
Black Bean Burgers with a side of Spicy Potato Wedges – always a hit!
Black Bean Quinoa Saladquinoa is becoming more popular in your non-hippiemarts, but if you can’t find it, use brown rice
Broccoli Pasta with a side of Velvety Tomato Soup
Green Enchiladas with a side of Tex-Mex Rice
New Orleans Red Bean and Rice Soup with a glass of wine, because it’s SPICY

black bean burger and potato wedges

On the lighter side of things:
Spinach and Chickpea Dinner Salad with a fresh fruit sorbet or coconut milk ice cream for dessert
Wild Brown Rice Salad with a side of Hannah’s Potato Salad or Coconut Curry Chickpea Soup

Coconut Curried Chickpea Soup

When deciding what to make, think of things that an omni wouldn’t feel that is lacking or sub-par because it’s a vegan dish (think “no cheese in the enchiladas or on the pizza” – that freaks people sometimes because it’s not the norm). Try to think of things that are naturally vegan (and I don’t  mean Oreo’s) – think rice and beans/veg (colorful veg), or pasta, or a vegetable soup. If the plate is colorful and appealing to the eye…nobody is going to notice that there isn’t any animal products. They’ll be excited to be eating something so aesthetically pleasing! 😀

Happy Eating!

On This Day In History: Oh my Darlin’ Clementine-n-Mango Juice

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Tex-Mex Rice

Growing up we called this Spanish rice, but after investigating recipes for traditional ‘Spanish rice,’ this did not fit the bill.  So here’s the Tex-Mex version of a Spanish-style rice 🙂 This goes great with Green Enchiladas and Papas Refritas, or Roasted Veg Enchiladas and Refried Beans, or any other Tex-Mex or Mexican meal. I suppose we could put this in the SOP category, as an all-purpose side to any mexican-inspired meal. This recipe serves about 4.

Ingredients:

1 C brown rice
1/2 large yellow onion (or 1 small-medium) diced
1-2 cloves garlic – you just want accent garlic, not overwhelm garlic
2 TBSP canola oil
1.5-2 tsp chili powder
1 tsp salt
2-3 Roma tomatoes, diced (or 1 can diced tomatoes, drained)
2 C water or veg broth
juice of 1 lime
cilantro for sprinkling

Directions:

1. Heat canola oil in a large deep-sided skillet/pan. Saute onion and garlic until garlic begins to soften, about 5-8 minutes. Add rice and toast lightly for a few minutes.

Tex-Mex Rice1Tex-Mex Rice2
2. Add spices, broth, and tomatoes. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer over low heat for approximately 45 minutes (or if using white rice, adjust time accordingly).

Tex-Mex Rice3
3. When all liquid is absorbed, let sit 5 minutes, covered. Drizzle with lime juice and stir in a handful of chopped cilantro. Serve with more cilantro sprinkled on top and enjoy!

Tex-Mex Rice4

Happy Cooking!

On this day in history: Double-Blueberry Drop Scones

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jalapeno corn muffin1I wouldn’t normally make cornbread (regular or muffins) in the summer, since I mostly associate cornbread with chili..and chili is a winter dish. However, at the Farmers Market last week I stumbled onto gold! Or more accurately…a boat load of jalapeños! I was at the stand where I normally get my tomatoes and onions, and I noticed a box of jalapeños just sitting there, all sad and lonely (well, it had fellow jalapeño boxes to keep it company). I asked my lady how much..and she responded with $1.00. I nearly lost it, one dollar for all those jalapenos – “Yes,” she said. “I’ll take it. I don’t know how I’m going to use them all, but I’ll find a way. I have no doubt.” I didn’t want to tell her she was crazy for letting all those jalapeños go for so little, but then I remembered where I was (Kansas) where spicy is a farcical term – not in Texas where spicy is not only accurate, but separate from descriptions such as ‘oh, it’s habanero hot’ or ‘fire hot’ ..”spicy” is often considered medium in certain places, and only the brave ask for hot. But I digress.. where was I, oh yes..don’t normally make cornbread in summer..yada yada.. so here’s some jalapeno cornbread!

Ingredients:

1 batch Texas Cornbread
2-4 (or if your peppers are on the mild side, go for 6) jalapenos, lightly roasted in the oven

Directions:roasted jalapenos

1. Preheat oven to 400°F. Roast jalapenos about 5 minutes on each side, until the skin starts to bubble up and look like yummy roasted goodness.
2. Meanwhile, mix up the batch of Texas cornbread.
3. When peppers are done roasting (and are cool enough to handle), slice down one side and remove some of the seeds (if necessary for the mild eaters). I used the full seeds of 1 diced jalapenospepper, and half the seeds of a second – out of 4 peppers total. I would classify mine as a medium to hot heat, which was perfect for me! Turn down the heat to 350°F.
4. Dice the peppers to your size preferancy – I don’t like huge chunks of jalapenos, so I diced mine to a small dice. But some are down with bites of pepper, that’s cool too. Stir into TX Cornbread batter. Butter and flour the muffin tin or 9X13 pan, and aliquot into B&F’d pan. Bake at 350°F for 18-20 minutes for muffins, or 40-45 minutes for 9X13 pan. Enjoy!

jalapeno corn muffin

*Note: I enjoyed mine with a tall glass of Orange Pekoe Ice Tea.

On this day in history: Cherry Almond Sorbet

Happy Baking!

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We’ve had Irish kale (Colcannon and Irish Stew) and we’ve had Indian kale (Chickpea, Cauliflower, and Kale). Now, a Tex-Mex kale recipe! And just in time for Cinco de Mayo!! This would also serve nicely as a dish to take to a Mexican-theme potluck party or serve on a buffet. This recipe serves about 4-6.

Ingredients:

1 TBSP canola oil
1/2 yellow onion, diced
1 TBSP minced garlic (about 4-5 cloves, or garlic to taste)
1 red bell pepper, diced
3-4 leaves of kale (rinsed, center stalk removed, and finely chopped)
1.5 C quinoa, rinsed
2.5 C vegetable broth or water, or combo
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp ground coriander
1/4-1/2 tsp cayenne (depending on how hot you like it)
salt and pepper to taste
juice of 1 lime
1 bunch cilantro, finely chopped

Directions:

1. Heat canola oil in deep-sided sauce pan. Add diced onion and garlic, and saute until onion is softened, about 5 minutes. Add red bell pepper and kale, and saute another 3-4 minutes.
2. Add quinoa and lightly toast for about 2 minutes. Turn heat to medium-high and add broth and spices. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to a simmer, and simmer for 12-15 minutes – until all the liquid is gone.
3. When done cooking, stir in lime juice and cilantro. Serve alongside papas refritas, frijoles borrachos, or stuff into a corn tortilla and eat like a burrito.Tex-Mex quinoa with Kale

Happy Cooking!

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pico de galloHere at the Primate, Jo and I are known for loving our Mexican food! And though we realize that Cinco de Mayo is not the actual Mexican Independence holiday that the US has somehow turned it into, and rather a specific battle celebration, we partake in the festivities all the same. So here’s a few menu ideas for your Cinco de Mayo celebration – hey, any reason to make up a pitcher of margaritas and a huge bowl of salsa.. 🙂 Here’s some quick and easy foods that can be made for an impromptu or planned Cinco de Mayo Fest!

Fresh Salsas: Pico de gallo or Tomatillo, or both 😉
Hearty Black Bean and Corn salsa
Mexican Quinoa
Spicy Potato Wedges
SOP: Margaritasquinoa

Tell your friends to bring chips, ice, and any Mexican beer they prefer and you’re set to go! You could also make some Watermelon sorbet for the kiddo’s to keep you cool in that hot sun!watermelon sorbetFM watermelon

Happy Cinco de Mayo!

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So last night I wanted something quick, easy, and delicious! Pretty much, that’s what I want every night.. so last night I warmed up some brown rice I had made on Sunday, and made a delicious nacho-style salad! Since the brown rice was already done, the longest cooking time was for the potatoes – and that was only about 20 minutes. This recipe make 2 large salads, but you could make them into 4 small/medium salads and serve with a bowl of soup.

Ingredients:

Tortilla chips (use gluten-free chips if that’s what you need)
2-3 Roma tomatoes, diced
1-2 large handfuls Spinach, roughly chopped
1.5-2 C (or 1 can) refried beans
2 C brown rice, warmed
1 C roasted corn (or roasted corn salsa)
any salsas that suit your fancy
salt and pepper to taste
fresh cilantro, minced
Sara’s favorite potatoes
(or any favorite potato of your choosing)
*optional: fresh lime juice

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 450°F. Dice the potatoes and prepare to your preference (I used my ‘favorite potato‘ recipe). Place the corn on a baking sheet and roast in the hot oven about 5 minutes.
2. Warm the brown rice and beans, separately. Dice the tomatoes, chop the spinach, and mince the cilantro.
3. Begin the layering – distributing evenly among each bowl! Tortilla chips, followed by brown rice, then beans, corn, spinach, tomatoes, and cilantro. Then surround the salad with the potatoes, and sprinkle with fresh lime juice if you desire.taco salad: tortilla chipstaco salad: rice and beans

…etc. until you get here…taco salad

Happy Cooking!

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3-bean quinoa burritos1Mmm…burritos! I love burritos! I think rolling anything in a tortilla just ups the yummy factor by 5-fold. Here’s a simple dish that could serve as a savory breakfast or quick & easy dinner – with or without being rolling up in a tortilla. And it can also work with just about any beans you have at the ready. This makes tons of leftovers, so it would make for a good dish to prep on a weekend for weekday lunches!

Ingredients:

2 C quinoa, rinsed
4 C vegetable broth (or a combo of broth and water)
1 TBSP canola oil
1 medium yellow onion, diced
3-6 cloves garlic (depending on your garlic love), minced
salt and pepper to taste
pinch of cayenne
1 tsp cumin
2-3 C cooked beans (any combination of 3 beans: I used pinto, black, and red chili beans)
corn or flour tortillas (use corn tortillas for gluten-free, or find a GF flour tortilla)
tomatoes, diced
baby spinach, rinsed and roughly chopped
fresh cilantro, minced

Directions:

1. If using corn tortillas, wrap in foil and warm in a 300°F oven while the quinoa is cooking. Heat oil in a deep sauce pan. Add onion and garlic, sauté about 5-8 minutes, until onion becomes softened. Add rinsed quinoa, and toast for about 2-3 minutes. Add broth, beans, salt, pepper, cayenne, and cumin. Stir to combine.
2. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer about 12 minutes – until all the liquid is absorbed.
3. Meanwhile, chop some fresh cilantro, tomatoes, baby spinach or lettuce, or whatever else tickles your burrito-fancy.
4. When ready to serve, if using flour tortillas, warm the tortillas in a hot skillet for about 45 seconds each side. Add a scoop of the beany quinoa to the tortilla, top with diced tomatoes, spinach, and fresh cilantro. You could also top with any salsa – pico, roasted corn, or tomatillo – you have on hand, or squeeze a bit of fresh lime juice over the burritos (for extra zing) as well.

3-bean quinoa burritos2

Happy Cooking!

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tostadas3Here’s a delicious meal that can be made within 5 minutes..ok, maybe 10. Tostadas were one of mine and Jo’s favorite things growing up. Of course, my toppings have expanded since childhood – as a kid, all I wanted was tomatoes. These can also be served alongside enchiladas (red or green) or any other mexican treat you like. I find 3 tostadas make for a nice and light, yet filling dinner. And because you top individually, you can cater to everyone’s tastes – or even those undecided voices in your own head (do I want tomatoes only or roasted corn salsa? why not both)!

Ingredients:

refried beans (either canned or homemade)
tostada shells (I use Bearito’s, but any will do)
salsa, for extra spice on top
any toppings you like, such as:
diced tomatoes
chopped baby spinach

lettuce
roasted corn
minced garlic
diced bell pepper (red or green – depending on your preference)
diced onions (red or yellow)

cilantro
you could even go fancy with some roasted tex-mex veg, or go make it easy on yourself if you have some already made roasted corn salsa (which is what I used) or pico de gallo

Directions:tostadas1

1. Heat refried beans in a small sauce pan over medium heat. Preheat oven to 350ºF.
2. Meanwhile, chop veggies of choice – a dice is best. Spread warm beans on tostada shell. If using roasted corn salsa, top tostada with it. I pretty much top it with everything i want minus the tomatoes and spinach (since I like those to be chilled for a fresher taste).
3. Warm tostada in oven for about 3 minutes – until it all becomes one warm shell of goodness and the edges begin to slight brown (this won’t take long so keep a close eye).
4. Top with diced tomatoes and spinach, and Enjoy!

tostadas2

*Note: I didn’t have any spinach on hand when I took these photos, but I normally do add chopped spinach to my tostadas…

Happy Cooking!

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It doesn’t feel like a true family gathering, or a complete menu to me, without a little salsa. For a change of pace, here’s an exciting and equally delicious roasted corn salsa. This recipe makes about 5 C worth (with the beans), which is guaranteed NOT to go to waste… trust me!

Ingredients:

1 jalapeño or hot pepper of choice *for a mild salsa, remove seeds..for hotter, keep seeds
1-2 roasted red bell peppers, either fresh or jarred (sliced into large flat surfaces so you can lay them skin side up on a baking sheet, or do them diced)
2.5 C frozen corn
1/4 C lime juice, (about 2 limes)
1.5 C (or 1 15oz can) cooked black beans, drained and rinsed *optional for added hearty-ness
1/2 C loosely packed fresh cilantro, leaves, coarsely choppedroasted corn salsa
1/4 C roasted red onion, finely chopped
1/2 tsp garlic, minced
1 TBSP olive oil
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to broil. Roast peppers (jalapeños and red bell, if using fresh), and cook until skin is black all over, about 10 minutes for jalapeño and 10 to 15 minutes for red pepper. Remove from oven and turn heat down to 400°F. Place roasted peppers in a bowl and cover tightly with plastic wrap; let stand about 10 minutes. Remove peppers from bag, and peel away and discard charred skin; rinse your fingers from time to time under cool running water, if necessary, but do not rinse the peppers. Remove and discard stems and seeds (for mild, keep seeds for hot). Mince jalapeño, and transfer to a large bowl. Cut red pepper into 1/4-inch pieces, add to jalapeño, and set aside.
  2. Place corn, unpeeled whole garlic cloves, and sliced onion in oven and roast until tender, about 15 minutes. Remove from oven, and let cool slightly. Peel and mince the garlic. Dice the red onion and add all roasted veg to peppers.
  3. Add lime juice, black beans, cilantro, olive oil, and cayenne to corn and pepper mixture, and toss well. Season with salt and pepper, and serve.

roasted corn salsa2

Happy Chopping!

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