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Simple Smokey Southwestern Home Fries

Once again, I made a large sheet pan of baked potatoes to be used throughout the week in different ways for meals. Because I did that batch cooking ahead of time it made the rest of the cooking in minutes.

I had served these with Baked Spanish Rice Tostadas. It made for a wonderful lunch.

Add baked potatoes and the Smokey Southwestern Seasoning to a large skillet. Cook potatoes until they are heated through. Garnish with Cashew Sour Cream.

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Layered Southwestern Salad

I made this salad for a gathering at church this past Sunday night. I have been dubbed the salad queen now.

  • 4 corn tortillas, cut into strips
  • 2 c corn, frozen, thawed
  • 1 recipe Tofu Sour cream of Cashew Sour Cream
  • 1/4 c cilantro + more for garnishing
  • 1 tsp garlic, minced
  • 1/2 tsp Smokey Southwestern Seasoning + more for garnishing
  • 2 limes zested, juiced, divided
  • 6 c romaine lettuce, chopped
  • 4 roma tomatoes, diced
  • 1 15 oz. can black beans, rinsed, drained
  • 1/2 c favorite salsa, divided (We like Newman’s Peach or Mango)
  • 1 15 oz. can pinto beans, rinsed, drained
  • 3 avocados, halved, seeded, peeled and chopped

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Cut the tortillas into 1/4 inch strips. Bake the tortillas strips for 7-10 minutes, until they are crispy. Set aside.

Make Cashew Sour Cream Dressing by combining Cashew Sour Cream, cilantro, garlic, Smokey Southwestern Seasoning, zest of 2 limes and the juice of one lime in a food processor. Process until smooth and creamy. Set aside.

In a 4 quart glass bowl, layer the romaine lettuce and then the tomatoes.

In a medium bowl combine the black beans and 1/4 c of the salsa. Stir the ingredients together so that the beans are completely covered by the salsa.

Layer the black bean mixture on top of the tomatoes.

Layer the corn on top of the black bean mixture. (You can use the same bowl you used for the black beans.)

In a medium mixing bowl stir together the pinto beans and the remaining salsa. Layer the pinto bean mixture on top of the corn.

In a medium bowl toss together the avocado and the juice of half a lime together. Coat the avocado with the lime juice. (The lime juice not only adds flavor, but it also keeps the avocado from oxidizing and turning brown.)

Layer the avocado onto the pinto bean mixture.

Layer the Cashew Sour Cream Dressing onto the avocados.

Sprinkle some Smokey Southwestern Seasoning on top of the Cashew Sour Cream Dressing.

Garnish the Salad with the corn tortilla strips and some fresh cilantro. Also, sprinkle some of the Smokey Southwestern Seasoning on top of the tortilla strips.

Note: You can also make Tofu Sour Cream by combining 14 oz package of extra firm tofu, 1 tbsp of lemon juice and 1 tbsp of white/red wine vinegar into a food processor and process.

Serve. Eat. Enjoy.

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Baked Spanish Rice Casserole

This is a great dish to bring to a cookout or to a gathering. I have been thinking of making this for a few weeks. Most of the preparation is hands off and it only requires one pot. Now, how easy it that?

  • 1/2 onion, chopped
  • 10 oz. diced tomatoes with green chilies
  • 1 tbsp garlic clove(s), minced
  • 1 tbsp tomato paste
  • 1 15 oz. tomato sauce
  • 2 1/2 c vegetable broth
  • 2 tsp Smokey Southwestern Seasoning
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 c brown rice, long grain
  • 1 15 oz. black beans, drained, rinsed
  • 1 14 oz. jackfruit in brine, drained, rinsed, shredded
  • 1/2 c nutritional yeast
  • 1 c corn kernels
  • 1 c green peas
  • 1 lime zested, juiced
  • 1/4 c + more for garnish fresh cilantro, chopped
  • 1 avocado, diced
  • Cashew Sour Cream, garnish

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Combine onion, tomatoes, garlic and tomato paste into a food processor. Blend ingredients until it turns into a sauce.

Add tomato sauce, vegetable broth, Smokey Southwestern Seasoning, and bay leaves into a large dutch oven and stir. Cook sauce until it begins to simmer.

Add brown rice, black beans, nutritional yeast and jackfruit to the sauce and stir thoroughly. Cover dutch oven with a lid or aluminum foil and bake for 60 minutes. No Peeking. If you peek, you will let out the steam. The steam is what helps the rice to cook perfectly. So there is no peeking for 60 minutes. After 60 minutes check the rice for doneness. If rice is not done add some more vegetable broth or water and cover rice and cook a little bit longer.

When rice is done fluff with fork. Stir in corn, peas, lime and half of the cilantro.

Garnish with remaining cilantro, avocado and Cashew Sour Cream.

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Mini Mexican Chickpea Burgers

These are actually a twist on my Easy Falafels, using Mexican flavor seasonings. It is a nice change from the Mediterranean flavors. They can be made in batches, frozen and then reheated for a quick meal or snack. They have only 6 ingredients. That’s pretty easy.

Note: You can use the canned variety of chickpeas, however, make sure they are rinsed and drained.

Note: Oat flour can be made by grinding rolled oats into a spice grinder or food processor.

Combine all the ingredients into the food processor and process until it is thoroughly combined and resembles a crumbly dough.

Transfer to a bowl and cover. Refrigerate the dough for 1-2 hours. The refrigeration helps the dough to firm up and the burgers hold together better.

Form dough into 12 little patties. Cook the burgers over medium heat in a non-stick skillet. Make sure the skillet is hot before you put the burgers in the pan. Cook each side until a deep golden color.

Serve. Eat. Enjoy.

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Easy Refried Bean Casserole

I came up with this Easy Refried Bean Casserole when I was looking through my pantry to see what I could make for dinner. At first I was going to make taquitos, but the corn tortillas kept falling apart. It was just not going to work. That is when I came up with this casserole. It is basically refried bean taquitos in a casserole form. It  can be ready in about 30 minutes, is easy to assemble and requires very few ingredients. It turned out to be a winner.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Layer tortillas into an 8 inch pie plate. Spread a layer of the Shortcut Refried Beans on top of the tortillas. Sprinkle half the corn on top of the beans. Sprinkle some Smokey Southwestern Seasoning on top of the corn. Repeat 1-3 more times It just depends on how deep is your pie plate.

Bake until it is hot, about 20-25 minutes.

You can use a number of different toppings: Guacamole, your favorite salsa, or my Creamy Cilantro Sauce/Dressing.

Serve with a salad or your favorite green vegetable.

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Note: Make sure you get Non-GMO corn products.

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Pinto Bean Burgers

These Pinto Bean Burgers turned out better than I thought they would. I was afraid the texture would be too mushy. It is hard to make a bean burger that is not mushy. I have been able to make a firm burger with my Black Bean Burgers, but I wanted to try hand with a different type of bean. If you want to try something other than black beans, give this one a try. They are pretty tasty.

  • 1 onion, medium, diced
  • 1 tsp garlic, minced
  • vegetable broth for sautéing
  • 1 1/2 c pinto beans
  • 1/2 c gf rolled oats
  • 3 tbsp aquafaba (liquid from canned chickpeas)
  • 2 tbsp walnuts, chopped
  • 2 tbsp cilantro
  • 2 tsp Smokey Southwestern Seasoning

Cook onions and garlic in a medium skillet over medium heat. Stirring frequently cook the onion mixture until it is soft and translucent. Use vegetable broth as needed to keep the onions from sticking to skillet. Transfer to a food processor.

Add beans, oats, aquafaba, walnuts, cilantro and Smokey Southwestern Seasoning. Process until the mixture is a chunky paste. Shape into 4 patties.

Make sure your skillet is hot before you begin to cook the patties. Cook the patties at medium heat, turning the patties when they are browned, about 6 minutes. Brown the second side of the patties.

Serve. Eat. Enjoy.

Note: These are good with BBQ sauce, salsa or a spicy aioli.

 

 

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Smokey Southwestern Sweet Pepper Crisps

These crisps were made in a dehydrator. It was fun to watch the transformation take place in the dehydrator. You could use the oven at its lowest setting. However, you would need to adjust the time, since the oven does not go as low in temperature as a dehydrator.

First blend:

  • 3/4 c golden flax seeds, ground, then soaked in double amount of water
  • 3/4 c raw almonds, soaked for 2-3 hours, until soft, drained

Blend together flax seeds and soaked almonds until smooth in a food processor. Transfer to a large bowl.

Stir-in:

  • 1 yellow pepper, chopped
  • 1 shallot, chopped
  • 1/4 c sun-dried tomatoes, soaked and drained
  • 1 1/2 tsp Smokey Southwestern Seasoning
  • 1 1/2 tbsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp Himalayan salt (optional)

Process the pepper, shallot, sun-dried tomatoes, Smokey Southwestern Seasoning and Himalayan salt until smooth. Add to the nut and flax mixture and mix until thoroughly combined. I used my hands to do this step.

Set the dehydrator at 115 degrees.

Using a non-stick dehydrator sheet and an offset spatula, spread the mixture evenly onto the sheet, no more than 1/4 inch thickness.

Dry for 2-3 hours. Remove after 2-3 hours and flip the mixture over onto another non-stick dehydrator sheet. Return to dehydrator and dry for an additional 6 hours.

Cut into triangles. I used a pizza cutter for this step.

Serve with your favorite dip or hummus.

Note: Do not be afraid to experiment with the stir-ins. Make up your own flavors and have fun with it.

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Shortcut Refried Beans

This is my favorite way to make refried beans. This recipe only uses 3 ingredients, but they are so flavorful and delicious. Are you ready for some big flavor?

You can use this recipe for tostadas, enchiladas or even a taco pizza – YUM!

  • 1 can of fat free refried beans
  • 1/4 c favorite salsa – Our favorite is one of the Newman’s Own, either peach or mango
  • 1/2 tsp Smokey Southwestern Seasoning

Add the the ingredients to a small saucepan. Cook over medium heat stirring frequently, until heated through.

Use as desired – enchiladas, tacos, burritos, and whatever else you can dream up.

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Mexican Jackfruit with Zucchini, Corn & Black Beans

I came across a recipe that sounded good, but needed some adjustments to meet my lifestyle. This is what I came up with, and under 30 minutes.

  • 1 can Jackfruit in brine, drained, rinsed
  • 3 tbsp Smokey Southwestern Seasoning, divided 1 tbsp/2tbsp
  • 2 c onion, diced
  • 1 tbsp garlic, minced
  • 1 1/2 c corn kernels, frozen, defrosted
  • 1 1/2 c zucchini, diced
  • 15 oz. can black beans, rinsed, drained
  • 1 can tomatoes with green chiles
  • 1 c tomato sauce
  • 1/4 c cilantro, garnish
  • avocado, garnish

In a large dutch oven add jackfruit and 1 tbsp of Smokey Southwestern Seasoning. Work seasoning into jackfruit.. Cook jackfruit over medium heat.

A onion to jackfruit mixture and cook until the onion softens, about 3-4 minutes. Add garlic, and remaining Smokey Southwestern Seasoning. Stir the ingredients until they are well coated with the seasoning.

Add corn and zucchini to dutch oven. Cook until tender, about 4 minutes. Stir in beans, tomatoes and tomato sauce. Cover and simmer for about 5 minutes. Garnish with cilantro and avocado.

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Serve. Eat. Enjoy.

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Baked Spanish Rice

This is an easy, inexpensive meal to throw together. It is packed with flavor and hearty enough for even the voracious eater. It smells amazing as it bakes in the oven. I had all the ingredients in my pantry so there was no need to go and make a special trip to the grocery. There is such satisfaction when a meal comes together with little effort.

  • 1/2 onion, chopped
  • 10 oz. diced tomatoes with green chilies
  • 1 tbsp garlic clove(s), minced
  • 1 tbsp tomato paste
  • 1 15 oz. tomato sauce
  • 2 1/2 c vegetable broth
  • 2 tsp Smokey Southwestern Seasoning
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 c brown rice, long grain
  • 1 c corn kernels
  • 1 c green peas
  • 1 lime zested, juiced
  • 1/4 c fresh cilantro, chopped
  • 1 avocado, diced

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Combine onion, tomatoes, garlic and tomato paste into a food processor. Blend ingredients until it turns into a sauce.

Add tomato sauce, vegetable broth, Smokey Southwestern Seasoning, and bay leaves into a large dutch oven and stir. Cook sauce until it begins to simmer.

Add brown rice to the sauce and stir thoroughly. Cover dutch oven with a lid or aluminum foil and bake for 60 minutes. No Peeking. If you peek, you will let out the steam. The steam is what helps the rice to cook perfectly. So there is no peeking for 60 minutes. After 60 minutes check the rice for doneness. If rice is not done add some more vegetable broth or water and cover rice and cook a little bit longer.

When rice is done fluff with fork. Stir in corn, peas, lime and half of the cilantro.

Garnish with remaining cilantro and avocado.

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Serve. Eat. Enjoy.