Rice (Brown or White) Black Bean Chicken Enchilada Casserole – Skill Easy

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Ingredients:

Approx. 5 cups of cooked brown or white rice – Get your rice started early especially if using brown rice

1 Can of Black Beans, Drained and Rinsed

1 Cup of Corn (frozen fine)

2 cups chopped vegetables + 1 cup diced onion

1 8 to 12 ounce bottle of enchilada sauce

1/2 cup low fat shredded cheese

2 cups already cooked shredded chicken (see previous post on gimmeoven’s awesome slow cooked shredded chicken or pull to pieces a store bought fresh rotisserie chicken)

2 tablespoons of olive oil

Directions:

Preheat Oven to 375 Degrees

Cook rice (highly recommend a rice cooker for perfect rice every time)

Saute with oil the vegetables for 10-15 minutes on low to medium low heat while the rice is cooking

Mix all ingredients in a VERY large bowl except for cheese. Make sure to stir the enchilada sauce well into the ingredients. I add my last.

Pour mixture in a large baking dish (at least 9 x 13) or a very high sided smaller casserole dish.

Bake for 20 minutes or a bit longer if using a smaller but deeper casserole dish

Remove dish from oven an sprinkle with shredded cheese.

Bake for another 10 minutes or until is melted and serve.

The dish is easy to freeze and defrost at a later date. Rewarm low heat 300/325 or use the microwave.

This dish is healthy especially with brown rice and tastes very good. Best of all you can be cleaned up quick before the final dish comes out of the oven.

Enjoy!

FYI When I make the slow cooker chicken, I freeze the leftovers in two cup portions. The morning before making this casserole I defrost one of the bags with two cups of chicken. While the dish works without chicken, it adds a little more heft to the meal.

Pair with fresh sliced tomatoes drizzled with oil, balsamic glaze and a dash of kosher salt and ground pepper.

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Slow Cooker Shredded Chicken / Soft Chicken Tacos

http://www.gimmesomeoven.com/slow-cooker-chicken-recipe.

This was great and made a ton of chicken which we used for chicken tacos, and Chipotle Chicken and Rice Soup.

[www.gimmesomeoven.com/chipotle-chicken-and-rice-soup]

 

Slow Cooker Shredded Chicken from gimmesomeoven.com

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 8 hours

Total Time: 8 hours, 10 minutes

Ingredients

  • 6 lbs. boneless, skinless chicken breasts (I used 4 1/2)
  • 2 tsp. salt
  • 2 tsp. black pepper
  • 2 tsp. garlic powder
  • (optional) 1/2 cup water or chicken broth (**see note below**) – I used water.

Method

Place chicken breasts in slow cooker, and sprinkle with seasonings (and liquid, if using). Cover and cook on low for 8 hours, or until the chicken shreds easily with a fork. (*If making a smaller batch, keep an eye on your slow cooker as the chicken will likely need less cooking time.)   I set my slow cooker with 4 1/2 pounds of chicken to 6 hours low and then let it go to warm for an hour.

Remove the chicken with tongs, and shred using two forks or the paddle attachment of a stand mixer. Use immediately, or freeze in ziplock bags or a sealed container.

Chicken was great and I put in my kitchen-aid with paddle to shred it – on lowest setting in two batches.

This recipe worked great.

Chicken Tacos:

1 tortilla

Spread 2 tablespoons of refried bean (got from Whole Foods, private label small can)

Add some shredded chicken

Add shredded cheese from store.

Fold Tortilla and place on Panini maker or Breville grill 5 minutes on about 370 degrees.  (Flip halfway)

Add fresh salsa.

Yum.

Shrimp (or Chicken) Biryani – Prepared Easy Style

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Shrimp Biryani

Simply Asia makes an Indian Essentials Spice Packet called: Chicken Biryani.  Being a big fan of Biryani, often eaten at our local India restuarant I was up to the challenge of testing a quick and easy way to make Biryani vs a more complicated recipe that involved no short-cuts.  (The long method will be posted later this week and was also equally successful).  The dish was easy to make.  The skillet did take a little effort to clean but overall clean up is reasonable for the quality of the dish.   We had zero left-overs for three people, one of who is under 5 and one of whom is a hungry man.  So I suggest doubling the recipe if your crowd is large or if you want any leftovers.  The serving amount on the packet notes 6.  Given we had no sides, our portions were on the larger size.

This dish looks and tastes great.  The dish does have some nice, yet mild heat.  The spices noted in the packet are chili peppers, turmeric, red pepper paprika, and salt.  The packet also lists sugar but that was not detectable  and the packet itself only lists 15 calories so it cannot be too much.  Sodium is listed as 440mg (18% of daily value) which is not too bad for a prepared packet like this.

Ingredients:

3/4th cup of plain vanilla yogurt

1 package of Simply Asian Chicken Biryani -see photo

2 tbsp. oil (I used olive oil)

1 medium onion thinly sliced

1 pound of uncooked shrimp (shelled and deveined)  – Packet calls for 1 pound of chicken breasts, cut into 1-inch cubes.  Thighs would likely taste fine too.

1 medium tomato, chopped

3 cups of water combined with 3 cups of low sodium chicken broth (original recipe calls for all water)

1 cup of white basmati rice (I used brown which did complicate the recipe some given a longer cooking time) – Read directions carefully before starting recipe if using brown rice.  Otherwise you will waste time waiting for your rice!

1/4 cup sliced almonds (original recipe calls for cashew halves)

1/4 cup raisins

2 TBSP butter, melted (microwave 40 seconds)

Directions (Prep Time 15 minutes, Cook Time around 35 minutes white rice, 45 minutes plus if brown Biryani rice

  1. If using brown biryani, rinse with water mixing up the rice with a spin over a strainer prior to prepping your ingredients.  This will help cook the rice faster.
  2. Mix yogurt and seasoning mix, set aside
  3. Heat oil in a large skillet on medium heat
  4. Add onion to skillet, cook and stir for 3 minutes
  5. If using brown biryani and directions note cooking time for 40 minutes, begin prepping your brown rice now; otherwise skip to step 6 now .  Bring water/chicken stock to a boil in medium saucepan on medium high heat.  Add rinsed rice.  Stir.  Once the water begins to boil, cook your brown rice for 20 minutes uncovered on medium heat (vs medium high).  Drain rice in strainer, discarding liquid.
  6. Stir into skillet, prepped chicken (if using chicken), tomato and yogurt mixture.  If using shrimp see step 7 for adding shrimp which takes less time to cook.
  7. Bring skillet to a boil.  Reduce heat to low; (if using shrimp add now); cover skillet and simmer for 10 minutes
  8. If using white biryani, while covered skillet is simmering in step 7 above, begin to bring water/chicken stock to a boil in medium saucepan on medium high heat.  Add rice.  Stir.  Once the water begins to boil cook your white rice for 5 minutes uncovered on medium high heat.  Drain rice in strainer, discarding liquid.
  9. Spoon rice on top of shrimp (or chicken) mixture.  Sprinkle with nut choice above and raisins.   Drizzle with melted butter.
  10. Cover with tight fitting lid.  Cook on low heat 15-20 minutes if white rice – although cook further if rice is not ready.  Add a little bit of water if necessary to cook rice longer.  If using brown rice cook on low heat 25-30 minutes  although cook further if rice is not ready.  Add a little bit of water if necessary to cook rice longer.
  11. Let stand at least five minutes off heat covered before serving.

Prepped ingredients below

 

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Yogurt mixed with spice packet

 

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Uncooked slice onions

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Browned onions

 

 

 

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After shrimp added

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Drained cooked rice

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Just before covering skillet

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Adding in rice, nuts, raisins

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Quick stir

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Final dish

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Tasty Turkey Burger

Turkey Burgers - Uncooked

Turkey Burgers Prepped for Fridge – Double Batch (2 1/2 pounds of meat)

Insert Photo to Come

Turkey Burgers After Grill.

These turkey burgers are moist and tasty and best grilled outdoors.  They take about 10 minutes to make.  I strongly recommend putting them in the fridge for a few hours or overnight before grilling.  This way the burgers firm up more and stick together when grilling.

Makes 4   4-5 oz burgers.

(Recipe can easily be doubled with success)

Ingredients:

1 1/4 pounds 93 percent lean ground turkey

1/2 teaspoon table salt

1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper

2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce

1/2 cup ricotta cheese

2 generous teaspoons Dijon mustard

1 tablespoon vegetable oil or canola oil (if indoor grilling)

Directions:
1. Transfer ground meat to medium bowl. Stir in salt, pepper, Worcestershire sauce, ricotta cheese, and mustard until blended, and divide meat into 4 portions. Lightly toss one portion from hand to hand to form a ball, then lightly flatten ball with fingertips into 1-inch-thick patty. Repeat with remaining portions.

2a. To Grill: Grill burgers over medium-low fire (you can hold your hand about 5 inches above grill surface for 5 seconds) until dark spotty brown on bottom side, 7 to 9 minutes. Turn burgers over; continue grilling 7 to 9 minutes longer or until bottom side is dark spotty brown and center is completely cooked or instant-read thermometer registers 160 degrees. Remove from grill and serve immediately.

2b. To Cook Indoors: Heat a large, heavy skillet (preferably cast-iron or stainless steel with an aluminum core) over medium heat until very hot, 4 to 5 minutes. Swirl oil in pan to coat bottom, then add burgers. Cook over medium heat without moving burgers until bottom side of each is dark brown and crusted, 3 to 4 minutes. Turn burgers over; continue to cook until bottom side is light brown but not yet crusted, 3 to 4 minutes longer. Reduce heat to low, position cover slightly ajar on pan to allow steam to escape, and continue to cook 8 to 10 minutes longer, flipping burgers if necessary to promote deep browning, until center is completely cooked, or an instant-read thermometer inserted from the side of the burger into the center registers 160 degrees. Remove from pan and serve immediately.

Serve with normal burger toppings.  I generally do not add cheese on top given cheese is inside the burgers, but don’t let me stop you.

Giada De Laurentiis’ Turkey Chili Served with Quinoa

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I was on an airplane ride returning from vacation with free TV and Giada from the Food Network made this recipe.  It sounded good so we tried it out.  It got the thumbs up from me, my husband, and our young daughter.  It is definitely flavorful, easy to make, and can be on your table in under an hour including cleanup especially with some quick advanced planning.  Her web link says prep is 1 hour, cook 1 hr 30 minutes.  You likely will not need this much time.  This dish listed below does not have much “heat”.  If you want more keep some chili seeds in and use more chili powder.

http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/giada-de-laurentiis/california-turkey-chili-recipe.print.html

Serves 6-8 large bowls

(This recipe has been grossed up from the web link.)

Ingredients

1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
4-6 large cloves garlic, smashed, peeled and chopped  (short cut pop the peeled cloves in a small cuisinart, or just use jar garlic)
1-2 large poblano chiles, stemmed, seeded and diced (I used one large; she lists two)
2 celery stalk, chopped small pieces
1 1/2 large onion, chopped small pieces
2.5-3 pounds ground turkey (use at least half dark meat to keep flavor up)
1 1/4 tablespoon all-purpose flour
6-8 tablespoons tomato paste
4-5 generous tablespoons chili powder
1 1/2 tablespoon ground cumin
3 generous teaspoons (packed) dark brown sugar
1 1/2 teaspoon dried Mexican oregano, crushed
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper (see measurements below to start with, add more if desired)
little less than one teaspoon ground cinnamon
little more than 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
4 cups low-salt chicken broth (preferably organic)
One 15 to 16-ounce can white or brown kidney beans rinsed and drained

Simplest Quinoa and Pine Nut Pilaf, recipe follows

Assorted garnishes, such as chopped onion, shredded white Cheddar, chopped tomatoes and/or sour cream

Quinoa and Pine Nut Pilaf:  This won’t look like much pre-cooked but will make a lot.
1 1/4 cups whole grain quinoa (about 7 ounces)
1 3/4 cups low-salt chicken broth (preferably organic)
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/3 cup chopped fresh cilantro or Italian parsley
1/3 cup pine nuts

Directions

Peal and prep your garlic.  Set aside.

Mix your spices and sugar in a small bowl.  Precision not required.  Set aside.

Now heat the oil in a heavy, large pot over medium-high heat for a few minutes until shiny.

While the oil is heating, quickly prep your carrots, poblanos, celery and onion.  Rough but small cuts are fine.

Add the poblanos, celery and onions to warmed oil pot. Saute until the vegetables soften, 5 to 6 minutes.  Add the garlic.  Stir 1 minute.

Add the turkey and saute until no longer pink, breaking up the turkey with the back of a spoon, about 7 minutes.

Sprinkle the flour over and stir to blend.

Add the tomato paste, and spice/sugar bowl (chili powder, cumin, sugar, oregano, 1 teaspoon salt, 1/2 teaspoon pepper, cinnamon and cloves).

Cook 1 to 2 minutes, stirring to blend.

Add the broth and beans.

Bring to a simmer – 5-10 minutes.

Reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer until the flavors blend and the chili thickens to desired consistency, stirring often, 20 to 30 minutes.

Season with more salt and pepper.

To serve, spoon Simplest Quinoa and Pine Nut Pilaf into deep bowls. Ladle chili over. Serve with garnishes.

Simplest Quinoa and Pine Nut Pilaf **

Place the quinoa in a fine sieve. Rinse under cold running water 1 full minute. Set aside to drain.

Bring the broth, salt and pepper to a boil in heavy, medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Stir in the quinoa. Cover, reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer until the quinoa is tender and all the broth is absorbed, about 15 minutes. Turn off the heat. Let the quinoa stand, still covered, for 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Scatter pine nuts on a small rimmed baking sheet. Toast the nuts until golden, stirring occasionally, about 5 minutes. Cool on the baking sheet.

Mix the cilantro and pine nuts into the quinoa.

** Dishthistoday Quinoa Note: For me, I did the quinoa in my Zojirushi rice cooker, quick setting – using 1 cup quinoa to 2 cups chicken broth).  I set it in the morning before work and it stayed warm once cooked with very little degradation of taste.  It usually finishes within a half hour so if you are making as the same time as chili get it started before you start the chill.  I also prepped the veges and spices the night before so that when I got home from work putting the dish together took even less time.  If you have never tasted quinoa, don’t be turned off.  It is a grain and when cooked properly tastes great and is relatively healthy for you.  Also to save time I skipped the pine-nuts but I am sure they are a good addition if you have the time.

Read more at: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/giada-de-laurentiis/california-turkey-chili-recipe.print.html?oc=linkback

Indian Shrimp with Coconut Dipping Sauce over a Bed of Quinoa

Finished Dish: Shrimp with Coconut Dipping Sauce over Quinoa

Shrimp with Coconut Sauce over Quinoa

The recipe comes from Modern Spice by Monica Bhide.  Her inspiration for the recipe per her cookbook is from Chef Jose Andres from Washington DC who owns a few restaurants in DC.  It is very easy to make and tastes and smells wonderful.  I added the quinoa, removed the shrimp tails and served over quinoa versus the recipe presented in Bhide’s book.  It is incredibly tasty and not a typical India heavy dish.

This recipe makes enough for 4 small appetizer servings or 2 dinner dishes.  To bulk up the counts increase your shrimp count.  If you multi-task the quinoa, shrimp, and sauce well, this dish can be completed in well under an hour easily and cleanup is painless.  You can use the same large pot to cook the tomatoes, the shrimp, and the sauce.  You only need one cutting board.

Ingredients Coconut Sauce and Shrimp

1 small red onion minced

2 small tomatoes pureed * instructions below

1 13.5 ounce can unsweetened coconut milk

1/2 teaspoon of ground cumin (her recipe called for 1 teaspoon of the actual seeds which I don’t stock in my pantry)

1 teaspoon red chili powder (or less if you prefer less spicy)

1 inch piece fresh ginger peeled and minced (go fresh if you can versus ground ginger spice)

1 tablespoon of Worcestershire sauce

Pinch of sea salt

Cooked 1 pound of nice sized shrimp **

* Puree tomatoes – WikiHow has great instructions on how to do the puree.  I left the seeds and juices in. I stopped after Wiki step 8 because I was just needed simple tomato puree.  You can reuse the pot from the tomato puree step for the recipe later.
Before Puree

After Puree

After a few pulses (above)

http://www.wikihow.com/Make-Tomato-Puree

** For cooking the shrimp, I keep it pretty simple because I want the sauce to be the flavor of the shrimp.

Remove shells, tails, and devein the shrimp (dark brown or black vein) with a sharp knife.

Rinse what you just prepped in cold water and drain.

Fill pot with enough water to cook shrimp; then boil the water on high heat.

Add shrimp and push under water initially, allow the shrimp to cook 1-2 minutes until you see small bubbles to break the surface of the water.  Stop at that point and remove pot from heat.  Shrimp cook quick and should start to have a nice pink tinge (you will need to peak at a shrimp because the water will be murky).  Cover the pot and let the shrimp cook in the hot water off the heat for about 5-10 minutes depending on the size of shrimp.  They will now fully have that nice pink color you are looking for.  Don’t overcook.  Drain the shrimp and set aside.

Prepped Shrimp

Shrimp ready to go off heat

Cooked after staying in warm pot 7 1/2 minutes.

Above 3 shrimp photos – prepped, in the pot on heat with bubbles surfacing, fully cooked

Directions for Coconut Sauce

1) Combine the onion, tomatoes, coconut milk, cumin, chili powder, ginger, pinch of salt, and Worcestershire sauce in a large bowl and mix well.  Add more salt after tasting if desired.

Uncooked Sauce

2) Pour mixture into a large pot and bring to a boil over medium heat.    Begin to prepare your Quinoa ***

Cooked Down Sauce

3) Reduce the heat and simmer for 20 minutes stirring occasionally.

4) Remove from heat and allow to cool at room temperature

5) Process in a blender until smooth – can serve sauce cold or warmed

Blender Pre Blend

Sauce After Blending

After blending thoroughly (immediately above)

*** Preparing Quinoa –  I admit I am spoiled here and use my Zojirushi rice cooker which makes it perfectly with little fuss in less than a half hour.  Rinse one cup of quinoa over a fine mesh strainer and once drained place in rice cooker pot.  Add 2 cups of either water, vege stock, or chicken stock (my preference), add a pinch of sea salt, set on the quick start and wait for it to be done.   As for stove top methods there are tons of options online or follow the instructions on your Quinoa container.   Again for this recipe I keep the quinoa flavor simple because I am counting on the coconut sauce to flavor the shrimp and quinoa.  

Cooked Quinoa

Serve

Layer a plate with quinoa bottom, add shrimp portion, and pour over some sauce.
Shrimp with Coconut Sauce over Quinoa



Pulled Barbecue Chicken Sandwiches via Slow Cooker

Pulled BBQ Chicken

Pulled BBQ Chicken

Pulled barbecue chicken sandwiches – Very Easy! Fast Prep!

Yield: 12+ meaty sandwiches

Prep Time: 10 min

Cook Time: 6 hrs

Ingredients:

2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts + 1 pound boneless, skinless thighs
2 cup (16 oz) barbecue sauce (a flavor you like)
2/3 cup Italian dressing – good brand
2 tablespoons packed light brown sugar
2 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
4 tablespoons cornstarch
4 tablespoons chicken broth (I have used water too but chicken stock is more flavorful)
additional barbecue sauce, if desired
rolls, for serving as sandwiches
bread and butter pickles, optional

Directions:

1. Place chicken in the slow cooker.  You should enough meat to cover the bottom layer of your cooker.  In a medium bowl, whisk together the barbecue sauce, Italian dressing, sugar and Worcestershire sauce. Pour the sauce over the chicken. Cover and cook on low for 4 1/2 to 5 hours.

2. Remove the chicken to a cutting board. In a small bowl, mix cornstarch and chicken broth (or water). Stir it into the sauce in the slow cooker. Cover and cook on high until the sauce is thickened and heated through (10 to 15 minutes). Meanwhile, use two forks to shred the chicken. Return the shredded chicken to the slow cooker and stir. Add additional barbecue sauce if more sauce is needed or desired. Cover and continue cooking on low for 45 minutes. Serve chicken piled onto rolls. Add pickles, if desired.

tips:

*The brand of barbecue sauce that you use can make a big difference in the flavor of the chicken.  Many people on line like Sweet Baby Ray’s!

Source:  RecipeGirl.com (Adapted slightly from All You)

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Close Up Look

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Getting ready to freeze leftovers.