Saturday, May 22, 2010

Crock Pot Enchilada Casserole

I first made this over the holidays for my mother-in-law, who is vegetarian. She didn't care for it, but all the carnivores gobbled it up. I dug the recipe out again because I remember it being good and easy. So far, it does not disappoint! You could easily modify this to make it in the oven if you don't have a crock pot.


3 Tbsp diced green chiles, divided
1/2 cup salsa
1/4 cup chopped green onions
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
1 (15 oz) can black beans, rinsed and drained
1 (11 oz) can corn with red and green peppers, drained
1 (10 oz) can enchilada sauce

1/2 cup egg substitute (or 2 eggs)
1 (8 1/2 oz) package corn muffin mix
2 Tbsp chopped bottled roasted red bell peppers
1 Tbsp diced green chiles (left from filling)

1 1/2 cups shredded reduced-fat Mexican blend or cheddar cheese
6 Tbsp low-fat sour cream
1 1/2 tsp thinly sliced fresh cilantro

Place 3 Tbsp green chiles and next 6 ingredients (through enchilada sauce) in a 3 1/2 quart electric slow cooker; stir well. (Note: I have no idea what size my crock pot is--it's oval. I think it's 6 quart. It works just fine.) Cover with lid; cook on low-heat setting 4 hours.

Combine remaining 1 Tbsp green chiles, egg substitute, muffin mix, adn roasted bell peppers in a bow. Spoon over bean mixture in slow cooker. Cover and cook 1 hour or until corn bread is done.

Sprinkle cheese over corn bread. Cover and cook 5 min or until cheese melts. Top each serving with sour cream and sprinkle with cilantro.

Buttermilk Lemon Pie

I've wanted to try this pie for a while, but only finally got around to it last week. I liked it, but I don't think I'll make it again. It's good, and if you enjoy buttermilk I'd encourage you to try it, but I think we'd rather have a regular lemon pie.

1 cup sugar
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
2 cups buttermilk
1/2 cup water
3 egg yolks, lightly beaten
6 Tbsp lemon juice
2 Tbsp butter

3 egg whites
6 Tbsp sugar

1 pastry shell, prepared

In large saucepan, combine sugar and flour. Gradually stir in buttermilk and water until smooth. Cook and stir over medium heat until thickened and bubbly, about 4 minutes. REduce heat; cook and stir 2 minutes longer. Remove from the heat.

Stir a small amount of filling into the egg yolks. Return all to the pan, stirring constantly and return to heat. Bring to a gentle boil. Cook and stir 2 minutes longer. Remove from the heat. Stir in lemon juice and butter until butter is melted. Keep warm.

In a small mixing bowl, beat the egg whites on medium speed until soft peaks form. Gradually beat in sugar, 1 Tbsp at a time, on high until stiff peaks form and sugar is dissolved.

Pour hot filling into pastry shell. Spread meringue evenly over hot filling, sealing edges to crust. Bake at 350 for 15 minutes or until the meringue is golden brown.

Cool on wire rack for 1 hour; refrigerate at least 5 hours before serving. Refrigerate leftovers.

Ropa Vieja

This is another recipe from that magazine my realtor, Bill, sends to my house. I have to say, it's pretty darned tasty. Next time I make it, I'm going to try to cook the beef in the crock pot. Maybe.

2 tsp salt, plus more as needed
1 Tbsp whole black peppercorns
2 lbs flank steak
1/2 cup olive oil
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 medium onion, roughly chopped
1 medium green bell pepper, roughly chopped
1 medium red bell pepper, roughly chopped
2 cups tomato sauce (I used crushed tomatoes)
1 bay leaf
1/2 tsp white pepper
1 cup vino seco (dry white cooking wine)
1/2 cup peas, for garnish (I left these out)
1/4 cup chopped pimentos, for garnish

Cook the steak:
Combine 1 1/2 quarts water (6 cups), 1 tsp of the salt, and the peppercorns in a large pot, and bring to a boil over high heat. Add the steak, and reduce the heat to low. Cover the pot and cook for about 2 hours, until the meat is nice and tender.

Make the sauce:
Heat the olive oil in a large frying pan (LARGE) over medium heat. Add the garlic, onion, and bell peppers, and saute for about 10 minutes, until the vegetables are soft. Add the tomato sauce, bay leaf, pepper, and remaining tsp of salt, and bring the mixture to a boil. Add the vino seco, and continue boiling for 5 minutes.

Reduce the heat to low and simmer fo r20 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat, and set aside.

Drain the flank steak and let it cool to room temperature on a plate lined with apper towels. Shrid the beef into long strips (it should come apart easily). Season the steak with salt and pepper and add it to the tomato mixture. Stir to coat the meat with the sauce.

Cook over medium-low heat for at least 20-30 minutes, to allow the flavors to come together. Remove and discard the bay leaf. Garnish with peas and pimentos before serving.

Serve with rice and enjoy!

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Blue Cheese Cole Slaw

Ever have something not turn out quite as you'd expected, and then later you re-read the recipe and realize you did something wrong? That's kind of what happened with this cole slaw for me.

Don't get me wrong--it was DELICIOUS, but the flavor overpowered every other part of the meal. Just now, while typing this recipe, I figured out why.


2 cups cabbage (shredded) PLUS 1 carrot (shredded) OR 1 bag of pre-shredded cole slaw mix
1/4 cup mayonnaise (low fat is fine)
1/4 cup sour cream (low fat is fine)
2 tablespoons grainy mustard
Juice of 1 lemon
salt and pepper to taste
1/4 cup blue cheese (crumbled) I think this is where I messed up. I could have sworn the recipe called for 4 oz of blue cheese, and so I figured 5 would just be extra good. I think I basically quadrupled the blue cheese. Start with less--you can add more if it needs more blue cheese flavor!
1 handful parsley (chopped) I left this out

Combine the mayo, sour cream, mustard, lemon juice, salt, and pepper in a large bowl. Add the carrots/cabbage and mix to coat. Taste and add more blue cheese/salt/pepper/lemon juice as needed.

Cover and let mellow in the fridge for a few hours.

So, yeah, mine was good, but it would be even better (and palatable for those who don't LOVE blue cheese) if you used the correct amount.

If you like blue cheese, though, this is for you, and it would be awesome on a buffalo-flavored pulled chicken sandwich/wrap.

Jalapeno Cheese Corn Muffins

I recently had some jalapeno cheese corn muffins at California Cafe, and they were GOOD. I went online in search of the recipe, and while I didn't find it, I did find these.

They aren't quite as good as the ones at CA Cafe, but they were tasty. The Big Geek didn't like all the "stuff" in them and said he'd rather just have plain cornbread. I think he's crazy and these are delicious. They aren't hot, so even the little geeks enjoyed them.


1 1/2 cups yellow cornmeal
2 Tbsp sugar
2 Tbsp baking powder
1 1/2 Tbsp flour
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup fresh corn, scraped from the cob, OR 1 cup creamed corn (I used creamed corn)
1 1/4 cups buttermilk
3/4 cup minced onion
1/2 cup melted butter
1 cup grated Cheddar or Monterey Jack cheese
4 oz diced Jalapeno (remove seeds/membrane unless you want it hot) OR 1/4 cup minced canned Jalapeno chiles (I used fresh)

Preheat oven to 425 and grease 12 large muffin cups

Stir together cornmeal through salt. Add corn, buttermilk, onion, and butter. Mix thoroughly until mixture is moist and creamy (it kind of puffs up).

Combine cheese and chiles and mix into batter.

Pour into 12 prepared muffin cups and bake 20-25 minutes.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Tres Leches Cake

Happy Cinco de Mayo! My daughter's playgroup had a party today, and I knew I wanted to take a tres leches cake. My BFF has talked about making this for years, so I had her send me her recipe. I was delighted to find out how incredibly easy it is.

You need:
1 box butter yellow cake mix, plus ingredients called for on mix (stick of butter, water, eggs)
1 can sweetened condensed milk
2 cans evaporated milk
1 pint light cream (although I didn't find light cream and ended up just getting whipping cream)
2/3 cup karo syrup
2/3 cup sugar
3 egg whites
1 tsp vanilla

Step 1: Make the cake according to the package directions. Here's a tip about butter yellow mixes: mix the batter for as long as the box says (in my case, 4 minutes). It really does make a difference in the texture of the cake. Use a 9 x 13 baking pan, and allow to cool completely.

Step 2: When cake is cool, puncture all over with a fork. Combine the milks in a bowl, then slowly pour all over the cake. Cover and refrigerate overnight or for at least 4 hours so that the milk really soaks in.

Step 3: Heat the karo syrup and sugar on medium-low heat until sugar is combined. While that's heating (stir occasionally), whip 3 egg whites until soft peaks form. When sugar is melted into Karo syrup, stir, add vanilla and stir to combine. SLOWLY pour the syrup mixture into your egg whites, beating them the entire time. When all of syrup has been combined with egg whites, you should have stiff peaks. Cover top of cake and refrigerate for another hour. OR, if you want, you could use whipped topping, but the meringue is really the way to go.

Serve with a spoon and enjoy! This is not low fat or low calorie, but it tastes REALLY good. :)