Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Mexican Casserole

Back my work days, we'd have an office pot luck from time to time. This casserole was brought in by one of the executives and I asked for the recipe. I've been making it myself ever since.

1 1/2 c crushed tortilla chips
1 lb shredded chicken
1 16 oz can pinto beans, drained
1 16 oz can red kidney beans, drained
1 16 oz can corn, drained
1 8 oz can tomato sauce
1 cup salsa
1 c chopped red onion
1 green pepper, diced
1/4 c chopped cilantro
1 Tbsp minced garlic
salt and pepper to taste
6 oz Monterey Jack cheese, shredded
6 oz Cheddar cheese, shredded

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 13x9 in pan. Scatter crushed chips on the bottom of the pan. In a large bowl, combine all the ingredients, except cheeses and mix well. Scoop half the mixture evenly over the chips. Sprinkle half the amount of each cheese on top. Add the rest of the chicken mixture evenly and top with the rest of the cheeses. Bake for 30 minutes. Let stand for 5 minutes before serving. Top with sour cream, chopped tomatoes and cilantro.

I use different kinds of salsa and press my garlic. Often I make the chicken mixture the night before.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Creamed Tomato Bisque

Had this yummy bisque at my friend, Kerry's house. She's vegan and substituted the necessary ingredients and it was awesome.

1/4 lb butter or margarine
1 c chopped celery
1 c onion
1/2 c chopped carrots
1/3 c all-purpose flour
2 (1 lb, 12 oz) cans whole tomatoes, drained and chopped
2 tsp sugar
1 tsp basil
1 tsp marjoram
1 bay leaf
4 cups chicken broth
1 pint (2 cups) whipping cream
1/2 tsp paprika
1/2 tsp curry powder
1/ tsp white pepper
salt to taste

Melt butter or margarine in a large saucepan. Saute celery, onion and carrots until tender. Stir in flour. Cook 2 minutes, stirring constantly. Add tomatoes, sugar, basil, marjoram, bay leaf and chicken broth. Cover and simmer 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. Discard bay leaf. Puree 1/3 of the mixture at a time in a blender. Add cream, paprika, curry powder and pepper. Stir to blend. Add salt to taste. Serve hot or cold. May be refrigerated several days or frozen. Makes 8 servings.

Friday, April 9, 2010

Mac 'N Cheese

One of the best Mac'N Cheese I've ever had! (Naomi), but my girls don't like it!

yield: Makes 20 servings
active time: 35 min
total time: 1 1/4 hr
The toasted crumbs on top have a cheesy crispness, and the pasta beneath is creamy and rich. Kids will appreciate the individual servings, but... more ›

For topping
• 1/2 stick unsalted butter
• 2 cups panko (coarse Japanese bread crumbs) or 3 cups coarse fresh bread crumbs (from 6 slices firm white sandwich bread)
• 1/4 pound coarsely grated extra-sharp Cheddar (1 1/2 cups)
• 1/2 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano

For macaroni and sauce
• 1 stick unsalted butter
• 6 tablespoons all-purpose flour
• 5 cups whole milk
• 1 pound coarsely grated extra-sharp Cheddar (6 cups)
• 1/2 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
• 1 pound elbow macaroni
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Make topping:
Preheat oven to 400°F with rack in middle.
Melt butter, then stir together with panko and topping cheeses in a bowl until combined well.
Make sauce:
Melt butter in a heavy medium saucepan over medium-low heat and stir in flour. Cook roux, stirring, 3 minutes, then whisk in milk. Bring sauce to a boil, whisking constantly, then simmer, whisking occasionally, 3 minutes. Stir in cheeses, 2 teaspoons salt, and 1/2 teaspoon pepper until smooth. Grate nutmeg (3 grates). Remove from heat and cover surface of sauce with wax paper.
Make Macaroni:
Cook macaroni in a pasta pot of boiling salted water (2 tablespoons salt for 4 quarts water) until al dente. Reserve 1 cup cooking water and drain macaroni in a colander. Stir together macaroni, reserved cooking water, and sauce in a large bowl. Transfer to 2 buttered 2-quart shallow baking dishes.
Sprinkle topping evenly over macaroni and bake until golden and bubbling, 20 to 25 minutes.
Cooks' notes: · Topping can be made 1 day ahead and chilled, covered.
· Half of dish can be baked in 10 (6- to 8-ounce) ramekins for children (with remaining half baked in a 2-quart baking dish for adults).