Sunday, October 12, 2008

Excuses, excuses...with some good recipes thrown in

I've not been lazy, honestly! I've had a cold which is trying to become a sinus infection, and we have been on the road. We had some yummy dishes that I want to share, though.

On Wednesday, Hannah made vegetable egg rolls (first time doing it by herself), and they were fabulous! I'm so proud of her. Here's our recipe:

Vegetable Egg Rolls
1 small head cabbage, shredded
about 2 cups carrots, shredded
3-4 scallions (to taste)
8 average egg roll wrappers

*to taste: garlic cloves, soy sauce, ginger (minced root or dried), any other seasonings you like

I shred the veggies in a food processor. Combine shredded vegetables and any seasonings you wish to add. (I like a bit of garlic powder and soy sauce.) I sometimes add a cup or so of corn and peas to the mix. You can add cooked chicken or other meat, but then, of course, they are not vegetable egg rolls. Microwave for a few minutes to soften carrots and cabbage. Place a large spoonful of mixture onto an egg roll and roll up according to directions. Spray lightly with cooking spray. Bake at 350 for 20-25 minutes, or until brown and crispy.


Since we have our homeschool co-op on Thursday and are out most of the day, I usually do a crockpot dish. This week, we also had a field trip on Friday, so I really had to plan ahead. I bought a rotisserie chicken and tore the meat into small pieces, then froze them to be used in these two dishes.

White Chili
8-10 servings.
1 lb large white beans, soaked overnight in water, drained (or 3+ cans white beans, depending on how much you want)
6 cups chicken broth
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 medium onions, chopped (divided)
2 (4 oz) cans chopped green chilies
2 tsp olive oil
2 tsp ground cumin
1 ½ tsp dried oregano
¼ tsp cayenne pepper
4 cups diced cooked chicken
1 cup grated Monterey Jack (or your favorite) cheese
1 jalapeno or serrano pepper, chopped (optional)

1. Combine beans, chicken broth, garlic, and half the onions in a large soup pot and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer until beans are very soft, 3 hours or more. (I just put it all in a crockpot and simmer on low all day.) Add additional water or broth if necessary. Another option: if you like a creamier chili, like a soup, you can puree some or all of the beans in a blender, small amounts at a time, before you add the chicken mixture.
2. In a skillet, sauté remaining onions in oil until tender. Add chilies and seasonings and mix thoroughly. Add to bean mixture. Add chicken and continue to simmer 1 hour. Check seasoning, add jalapeno or serrano to level of desired hotness.
3. Serve topped with grated cheese. Garnish with cilantro, chopped fresh tomatoes, salsa, chopped scallions, and/or guacamole. Serve with fresh warmed flour tortillas or tortilla chips if desired.

Southwestern Chicken-Bean Salad (adapted slightly from Robin Miller/food network)
4 servings

2 medium scallions, chopped
1 medium red or green pepper (or ½ of each), chopped
15 oz canned black beans, rinsed and drained
2 pieces corn on the cob, kernels removed (or 1 cup or so of canned or frozen)
2 tbsp lime juice (lemon works, too)
1 Tbsp your favorite oil
8 oz chicken breast, cooked, skinless, chopped (oh, for crying out loud, use leftovers or get a rotisserie chicken!)
2 tbsp taco seasoning, or to taste
4 tbsp fresh cilantro (optional)
sour cream

Combine scallions, peppers, beans, and corn in a large bowl; toss until well mixed.

Add lime juice and oil to bean mixture; toss to coat. Add chicken, taco seasoning, and cilantro; toss. Top with sour cream and serve.

* This is also yummy wrapped in a tortilla, with salsa and spinach. It would likely go well with chips, pita bread, or corn bread.

See you tomorrow!

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