About Me

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I am a wife and mom of two beautiful girls who happens to be a professionally trained chef. I have dreams of one day publishing a cook book, but in the mean time I want to share this gift I've been given with all of you, so grab a fork (or sometimes a spoon)...because I'm in the kitchen!

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Quinoa Loaded Bowl

It's been embarrassingly too long to admit since my last post, but the 12-24 month stage has me on my mom toes. My youngest is a daredevil and busy as can be. There just hasn't been the time I have wanted to post new and yummy things on here!! Since I'm all about doing things quickly at this moment of my life I have a quick dinner (or lunch) idea.

Quinoa-is technically a seed, but we tend to refer to it as a grain. It is a complete protein source with all essential amino acids, and guess what?...it cooks in 15 minutes! It has a 2-1 ratio for cooking, so 2 cups water and 1 cup quinoa. Put it all in a saucepan and bring to a boil. Cover and lower the heat to simmer 15 minutes, or until all water is absorbed. This makes 3 cups. Feel free to change up the liquid- chicken stock, veggie stock, or even grape juice (and have it for breakfast!).

Now if you buy quinoa in a package you just use as is. If you buy it in the bulk foods section, you will have to rinse it first, as it has a bitter coating on the outside.  I usually line a colander with cheesecloth, pour the quinoa in and rinse.

My favorite way to eat quinoa is what I call the loaded Mexican bowl. Serves at least 4.

1 onion, diced
1 bell pepper, diced
1 can pinto or black beans, rinsed
1 cup frozen corn
1/2 cup mild salsa, plus more for serving
1 cup grated cheddar or jack cheese
1 avocado, diced for serving

other yummy additions:
cooked beef, chicken, pork or shrimp
diced squash and zucchini
diced tomato
diced radishes or jicama
grated or diced carrot
chopped fresh cilantro

Cook quinoa according to package directions.
While that is cooking, in a large saute pan over medium heat, saute your onion and bell pepper about 5 minutes. You can use cooking spray, a little olive oil, or whatever you usually use.

Now throw in the pan your beans of choice, salsa and frozen corn. Cook an additional 5 minutes until corn and beans are hot throughout. salt and pepper to taste. Feel free to add garlic powder, chili powder and/or a pinch of oregano here.

Line up your bowls and place 1/2 to 3/4 cup quinoa on the bottom. Spoon over the veggie/bean mixture. Sprinkle with grated cheese and diced avocado.
Let me know what you think!

Monday, February 27, 2012

2 Bean Chili Pie

Do you like chili? Do you like corn bread? You've got to try this for dinner...and SOON!

1 onion, diced
1 green bell pepper, diced
2-4 cloves garlic, depending on your preference, minced
1 Tbs olive oil, or another oil for sauteing
1 can refried pinto beans
1 can kidney beans, rinsed and drained
1 can tomatoes with green chile's, slightly drained
2 tsp chili powder
1/2 tsp ground cumin
1 8.5 oz box cornbread mix, I used Jiffy
1/2 cup grated cheddar, jack or jalapeno jack cheese

Preheat oven to 400. Grease a 2 qt baking dish or a deep pie plate.
Heat a large saute pan over medium heat until hot. Add oil and veggies. Cook 5-7 minutes stirring occasionally until soft. Salt and pepper.
Remove from heat and stir in the refried beans, kidney beans, tomatoes with green chile's, chili powder and cumin. Stir until well combined. Pour into baking dish. Set aside.
In a medium bowl, prepare the cornbread mix, according to its package directions. Jiffy calls for 1 egg and 1/3 cup milk. Stir in the cheese into the batter. Spoon on top of the bean mixture.
Bake for 20-22 minutes until cornbread is lightly browned.

-would also be good with 2 cans drained, rinsed and slightly mashed, black eyed peas instead of the pintos and kidney beans.
-you could sub 6 oz tomato juice and a 4 oz can of green chile's for the tomatoes with green chile's.
-you could stir in 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro into the cornbread batter before baking