RSS

Tag Archives: Quick and Easy

Chili’s Copycat Salsa

I have a food problem.  It’s more of an addiction.  I am addicted to chips and salsa.  Throw in queso and I really cannot control myself at all.  Some of my favorite memories from college and then life post-college in New Orleans involve me and my favorite girlfriends getting together and eating chips and salsa.  When the hubs and I first started dating, one of our initial connections (in all seriousness) was over our mutual love for chips and salsa.

And, yet, I’ve never once made homemade salsa.

I realized recently that had to change.  Instead of buying salsa at the store or sending the hubs out to pick up chips and salsa from Chili’s (confession—guilty pleasure), I knew it was time to make salsa at home.

I found a recipe online for a copycat version of Chili’s salsa.  This version is spicier than Chili’s but the same consistency.  It turned out really good and very easy to put together.  Hopefully I can make fresh salsa this summer with tomatoes from my own garden, but for now, canned tomatoes work just fine.

Salsa

  • 1 (14 1/2) ounce can tomatoes and green chilies
  • 1 (14 1/2) ounce can whole canned tomatoes (with the juice)
  • 4 teaspoons canned diced jalapenos 
  • ¼ cup diced yellow onion
  • ½ teaspoon garlic salt
  • ½ teaspoon cumin
  • ¼ teaspoon sugar
  • 1 garlic clove (minced)
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
  • ¼ cup chopped fresh cilantro

Place the jalapenos and the onion into a food processor. Pulse for just a few seconds. Add the canned tomatoes and green chilies and the whole canned tomatoes. Add garlic salt, sugar, cumin, minced fresh garlic, lime juice, and cilantro. Process all of the ingredients until well blended but do not puree.

Pour salsa into a container, cover and place into the refrigerator. Chill for at least 2 hours before serving.

Source: BlogChef.net

Advertisements
 
Leave a comment

Posted by on April 7, 2013 in Appetizer

 

Tags: ,

Quinoa Burgers (The Best Thing Ever)

It’s very rare that I make dinner and then exclaim, “this recipe has changed my life!” But, holy moly, let me introduce you to a little thing called quinoa burgers.  Do not be afraid.  Embrace this.

The hubs and I love quinoa.  After all, it is a super grain… But the way we eat quinoa is in salads and I have NEVER thought about making a quinoa burger… Because I spend much of my free time stalking food blogs across the blogosphere, I have hundreds, well, thousands of recipes bookmarked to make one day.  I’ve had this recipe bookmarked for well over a year. Thankfully, I was perusing FoodGawker this week and I stumbled upon the recipe again and thought, yeah, I can make this.

And, just like that, my world changed.

We didn’t actually make our dinner into burgers, just ate the patties as is, which is really all you need to do.  Add the ingredients to your grocery list and plan to make this tomorrow, or Sunday, but certainly don’t wait any longer.

Go! The quinoa is calling.

Side note—this dinner also made an otherwise unbearable Georgetown vs. Florida Gulf Coast basketball game bearable. March Madness bracket = busted.

Quinoa Burger

  • 2 rounded cups cooked quinoa
  • 3/4 cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1/2 cup low-fat cottage cheese
  • 1 cup shredded zucchini, squeezed dry (use a clean dish towel to squeeze the zucchini)
  • 3 eggs
  • 3 tablespoons all purpose flour
  • 2 green onions, including white parts
  • 1/2 teaspoon Splenda or sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon garlic powder
  • Olive oil for frying

Combine quinoa, cheddar cheese, cottage cheese, zucchini, eggs, flour, green onions, sugar, black pepper, cumin, salt, and garlic powder in a bowl. Heat several teaspoons of olive oil in a large, non-stick skillet over medium-low heat. Using a 1/4 cup measuring cup, drop mixture into skillet. Using a spatula, flatten mixture into patties about 1/2 inch thick. Fry for about 4-5 minutes on each side until golden brown.

Makes approximately 10 patties.

Serve with tzatziki sauce for added deliciousness.

Source: Eating Well Living Thin

 
1 Comment

Posted by on March 22, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

Tags: ,

Simple Sesame Noodles

The hubs and I are just about to celebrate four months of wedded bliss.  What has changed in the past few months since beginning our married life?  Not too much, actually.  My last name…and the fact that we’ve started budgeting.  We have entered into marriage with an attempt to curtail our spending a bit (or at least track what we are spending money on) and I have become the budget queen.  I love my Excel budget spreadsheet!

I am currently reading Financial Peace Revisited by Dave Ramsey.  Several of my friends have taken the Dave Ramsey course and I like a lot of his methods.  I would say we are somewhat following his teaching on budgeting.  It’s definitely a process but a great exercise for the hubs and I to go through together.

So, here we are at the end of the month, and we have spent all of our “food” category moolah.  Last night, I was starving and in a somewhat cranky mood that only food could make better.  I could have gone to the grocery store or we could have gone out to dinner, but that kind of would have defeated the purpose of the budget…so I tried to get creative with what we had on hand.

Enter the Pioneer Woman.  I had bookmarked her recipe for Simple Sesame Noodles and last night, as my stomach was growling, and I was trying to talk myself out of spending $5 on a foot long sub from Subway, I remembered the post.

And sure enough, I had everything I needed at home!  This meal was quick and easy, plus made plenty of leftovers for lunch today.  You could easily add a protein or some veggies to the meal, but I went just for the noodles this time around.  And, I recommend adding a tablespoon of peanut butter for even more deliciousness.

Simple Sesame Noodles

  • 12 ounces, fluid thin noodles, cooked and drained
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tablespoons rice vinegar
  • 3 tablespoons pure sesame oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon hot chili oil
  • 4 tablespoons canola oil
  • 1 tablespoon peanut butter
  • 4 whole green onions, sliced thin

Whisk all ingredients (except noodles and green onions) together in a bowl. Taste and adjust ingredients as needed.  Pour sauce over warm noodles and toss to coat.  Sprinkle with green onions and serve.

Source: The Pioneer Woman

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on February 28, 2013 in Main Dish

 

Tags: , ,

Pineapple Tofu Stir-Fry

There is something about Sunday nights during football season that make me crave Chinese food.  And that craving always involves take out.  The hubs and I are trying really hard to start 2013 off right and attempt to eat in more than we eat out.  Unfortunately, having Chinese food delivered does not count as eating in…it’s a shame really.

But, tonight I found a recipe in one of our new cookbooks (EatingWell Serves Two) that brought all the goodness of delivery to our house without waiting an hour for delivery or having to tip the driver. A quick, healthier version similar to my usual order of Sweet and Sour Chicken (minus the chicken) that also let me try my hand at cooking tofu for the first time!  Though I don’t think we will be becoming vegetarians anytime soon…this was a great meal!  Next time I’ll add a pinch of red pepper flakes for a little spice, but otherwise, it was nearly perfect.

Pineapple Tofu Stir-Fry

  • 1 8-ounce can pineapple chunks, 3 tablespoons juice reserved
  • 5 teaspoons rice vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon reduced-sodium soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon ketchup
  • 2 teaspoons brown sugar
  • 7 ounces extra-firm, water-packed tofu, drained, rinsed and cut into 1/2-inch cubes
  • 1 teaspoon cornstarch
  • 3 teaspoons canola oil, divided
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 2 teaspoons minced ginger
  • 1 large bell pepper, cut into 1/2-by-2-inch strips
  • 1/2 yellow onion, chopped

Whisk the pineapple juice, vinegar, soy sauce, ketchup, and brown sugar in a small bowl until smooth. Place tofu in a medium bowl; toss with 2 tablespoons of sauce. Marinate for at least 5 minutes or up to 30 minutes. Add cornstarch to the remaining sauce and whisk until smooth.

Heat 2 teaspoons oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Transfer the tofu to the skillet. Cook the tofu, stirring every 1 to 2 minutes, until golden brown, 7 to 9 minutes total. Transfer tofu to a plate.

Add the remaining oil to the skillet and heat over medium heat. Add garlic and ginger and cook, stirring constantly, until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add bell pepper and onion, cooking until just tender, 3 to 4 minutes. Pour in the sauce and cook, stirring, until thickened, about 30 seconds. Add the tofu and pineapple and cook, stirring gently, until heated through, about 2 minutes more.

Serve over brown rice.

Slightly adapted from EatingWell Serves Two

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on December 30, 2012 in Main Dish

 

Tags: , ,

Baked Creamy Chicken Taquitos

I have been a bad blogger.  Really bad.  Lots of life events over the past eight months, including an engagement and a move, have changed my priorities. Instead of cooking and blogging, I’ve been planning a wedding.  In case you aren’t aware, planning a wedding takes up a lot of time.  Quick and easy is my new life motto when it comes to food.

When I can prep something on a Saturday or Sunday, then pop it in the oven directly from the freezer later in the week, and have it taste good…I consider it a small victory.  Using a rotisserie chicken makes this even easier!  This is a great appetizer to bring to a football watching party, too.

Photo of baked taquitos, refried beans, and salsa

  • 3 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 1/4 cup tomatillo salsa
  • 1 tbsp lime juice
  • 1/2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp onion powder
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3 tbsp chopped cilantro
  • 2 tbsp sliced green onions
  • 2 cups shredded cooked chicken
  • 1 cup shredded Mexican flavored cheese
  • Small flour or corn tortillas
  • Pinch of salt

Preheat your oven to 425 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

Combine cream cheese, salsa, lime juice, ground cumin, chili powder, onion powder, and garlic in a large bowl. Once combined, stir in the cilantro, green onions, chicken, and cheese; mix thoroughly.

Heat 2-3 tortillas at a time in the microwave between two paper towels until they are soft enough to roll (about 20 seconds).

Spoon 3 tablespoons of the chicken mixture onto the lower third of a tortilla. Roll the tortilla as tightly as you can.

Place the rolled tortilla seam side down on the baking sheet. Repeat with remaining tortillas until the mixture is gone. Make sure the taquitos are not touching each other. Spray the tops lightly with cooking spray and sprinkle with kosher salt.

Bake for 15 – 20 minutes or until crisp and golden.

Serve with refried beans and salsa for dipping.

To freeze: Before baking, freeze the taquitos in a single layer on a baking sheet for about 20 minutes, then place in a freezer bag.  Taquitos may be stored up to 3 months. To bake a frozen taquito, preheat oven to 425 degrees and bake for 15-20 minutes. No need to thaw first! How easy is that!?

Source: Pennies on a Platter

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on October 13, 2012 in Main Dish

 

Tags: , ,