Melissa’s Frittata

Okay, my frittata is really that much different from a regular frittata but I really wanted to have something named after me and if that means me naming it myself, so be it!  I mean, it’s much better than my niece naming her dog after me, right?  Right.

Your ingredients

Frittata Ingredients

Oregano, salt, pepper, one tomato diced, two small potatoes diced, three mushrooms sliced (mine were uber large but you basically want about a cup of sliced mushrooms), half an onion chopped, and four eggs.

You’re going to use a good amount of olive oil with this because this is basically an open omelet and you don’t want the egg or ingredients to stick to the skillet so use enough oil to cover the bottom.  Fry your potatoes for about ten minutes, until they’re almost fork tender, and then throw in your onions, mushrooms, and tomato.  Add some salt and pepper to taste and a bunch of oregano.  How much is a bunch?  A bunch.  It’s totally a technical term.  Have you also noticed I throw a lot of my ingredients in?  No wonder my kitchen is always a disaster area after I cook…Lightly beat your four eggs and then pour over your potato/tomato/onion/mushroom mixture.  Move it around just a teensy bit to get the egg in all the crevices, lower your burner to a little below medium, and let it sit for about fifteen minutes.  You can cover it if you want it to cook faster but there’s really no need.  Once it’s ready, cut in wedges and serve.

Frittata

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Tilapia with Veggies and Garlic Rice

The tilapia with veggies is one of my favorite and easiest recipes to make.  It takes less than thirty minutes to prepare and it’s super delicious!  If you’ve noticed, I tend to not make things that take more than an hour to prepare or cook because I really don’t like standing in the kitchen checking on stuff.  Okay, the real reason is that I really like to eat and once my kitchen starts smelling like food, I need to have it right then and there.  Patience is not a virtue in my kitchen…The garlic rice was something I decided to experiment with recently.  I adore rice but I’ve gotten tired of throwing in the same old veggies or making pilafs, I want something new, exciting, delicious!  I was a little nervous about it because usually when I experiment in the kitchen, it, um, okay, it’s gross.  Sort of like the time I decided to marinate pork ribs with a bottle of mead.  I figured that the honey would give the pork a distinct taste and it was definitely distinct, distinctly ass.   Eh, you live and you learn.

Your ingredients for the tilapia

Tilapia ingredients

One pound of tilapia, pepper, salt, cumin, one red pepper (I ran out of bell peppers and used these itty bitty sweet peppers instead, same result), half a purple onion, and one tomatillo, one bottle of Mexican beer or one cup of veggie broth.

I really like tomatillos and wish I had more recipes that called for them.  When James saw it on the counter, he asked “Um, what’s wrong with that tomato?”  Oh, that James!  If you aren’t very familiar with tomatillos, make sure you buy ones that are firm and bright green.  Usually part of the husk has fallen off so you can see the color.  On to the cooking.

Heat up your skillet with some EVOO and while waiting for that to heat up, chop up your veggies.  When the skillet and oil are nice and hot, add the peppers, then the onion, and then the tomatillo.  Normally I add a bottle of Dos Equis Mexican Lager to the veggies and let them boil but oddly, we didn’t have any beer in the house.   I ended up substituting the beer with veggie broth and I think it came out just as good.  While the veggies are boiling, cover each side of the tilapia with salt, pepper, and cumin and then add to the veggies.  I typically make room on the skillet, add the tilapia, and then cover the tilapia with all of the veggies so that all the flavor can get sucked in to the fish.

Your ingredients for the garlic rice (I didn’t take a picture of it, sorries!)

Half a cup of white rice, a two teaspoons of EVOO, two garlic cloves, and pepper, a drizzle of truffle oil.

I first smashed the garlic cloves and put them and a teaspoon of EVOO in foil, made a little envelope, and threw it in the oven at 350 degrees for about ten minutes.  When the garlic was ready, I took it out and mashed it into a paste.  I then heated up a pan with some oil and added the rice and about  a tablespoon of pepper.  I fried the rice for a bit, maybe about five minutes, and then added the garlic and a cup of water.  After the rice was ready, about thirty minutes later, I drizzled a little bit of truffle oil on top and fluffed it wit a fork.  If you’ve never used truffle oil, I demand you go out and buy yourself a bottle.  It’s a little expensive but totally worth it because it adds an amazingly rich flavor to everything you use it with and it never takes more than a drizzle to make a difference.

Tilapia with Veggies and Garlic Rice

I also made some squash with this meal but it was nothing more than sauteeing it in butter so I didn’t feel the need to add the how to in here.  The rice was yum-tacular and I was really pleased with how it turned out.  This was actually our Valentine’s Day dinner and it was a great success because I totally fell in love with that rice.

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Green Chile-Chicken Casserole

Hands down one of the easiest recipes ever!

Your ingredients

Green Chile/Chicken Ingredients

Sweet corn, green chiles, half an onion diced, one garlic clove minced, can of cream of chicken, one pound of chicken breast cut into small cubes, five tortillas.

You don’t have to include corn in this recipe but I do because I don’t like spicy food and green chiles are super spicy; I include the corn so as to not have my mouth aflame while I’m eating.

Cut up your onion, garlic and chicken and saute all of them in some olive oil for few minutes.  You don’t want to completely cook the chicken but make sure it isn’t pink anymore.  While you’re doing that, combine the green chiles and cream of chicken and heat in a sauce pan for a few minutes.  Once the chicken is no longer white, add the corn, and the combine with the green chile/cream of chicken.  Layer the five tortillas in a casserole dish and the pour the mixture on top.  Put in the oven for about fifteen minutes at 375 degrees.

Green Chile Chicken Casserole

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Migas

Migas are one of my favorite things to eat because they are incredibly delicious and very easy to make.  Ze Fiance loves migas as well and it has become a tradition to eat migas every Saturday morning so yeah, we eat a lot of migas.  Actually, now that I think about it, I made migas the night he proposed to me.  Migas have just made their way into the McScowland history book…

Your ingredients

Migas Ingredients

 

 

 

 

Three corn tortillas sliced into strips, one tomato diced, one bell pepper diced, one onion diced, two garlic cloves minced, four eggs, cumin.

Heat up a pan and add olive oil.  As the oil is heating up, slice up your tortillas, and then add them to the oil.  It’s best to let your tortillas fry for a while so as they are doing that, chop up the rest of your veggies.  

I have a process and it’s worked so far so here it goes (I know, I’m super anal retentive): dice bell pepper and then add to tortillas.  Dice onion and garlic and then add to tortillas and pepper.  Let that sit for a while, about three to five minutes, and then dice the tomatoes and add to mixture.  Whisk eggs and pour on top of tortilla veggie mixture, adding about two tablespoons of cumin.  Mix that all up until the eggs are completely cooked.  Sprinkle with cheese, if you like.  The whole process takes about a half hour, if even that.

When I eat migas at restaurants, they usually add more egg and a chopped up jalapeno.  This is fine and all but you lose a lot of the taste of the veggies with more egg and I don’t like spicy food so I always end up sifting through my migas to pull out the jalapeno bits.  They also typically serve migas with flour tortillas and black beans but I do neither.  Migas, the way I make them, stand alone.  

Migas

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Wild Rice, Broccoli, and Cheese Casserole

My Tia Juanita makes this dish for pretty much every single family get together; it’s awesome.  I always keep an eye on it and get mad if people, like my cousin Andy, take too large of a serving because it means less for me to bundle up and take home.  She uses white rice but I decided that for my first attempt at making it, I’d use wild rice.  Maybe it’s just my obsession with Tia Juanita’s version but the white rice version is slightly better.

Your ingredients

Casserole Ingredients

1 cup of shredded cheese (I used sharp cheddar), three cups rice, one can Cream of Chicken soup, one onion finely chopped, one garlic clove finely chopped, 1/4 cup butter, one 10 ounce package of frozen broccoli.

Prepare rice as directed.  Thaw out and steam broccoli.  Saute onions and garlic in butter until tender.  When you have done all of this, let all the ingredients cool down.  If you combine them while they’re still hot, the cheese melts too fast.

When everything is cool, combine all ingredients (including the cream of chicken), holding 1/2 cup of cheese aside.  Spread into a casserole dish and cover with remaining 1/2 cup of cheese.  Put in the oven at 350 degrees for about twenty minutes.

Casserole

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Pumpkin Empanadas

I don’t bake often because I really hate measuring things and you have to be pretty precise when baking.  Plus, baking takes time and patience and if there is one thing that the Main Man Up in the Sky did not give me, it’s patience.  And height but that’s another rant, another blog post.

Anyway, it’s getting near the holidays and I’ve been thinking about family traditions so when I start to think of those two things, I think of food.  Fatty McFatty in the hiz-ouse!  One thing my Grandma Lupe always made around Thanksgiving was pumpkin empanadas.  She used to go on an empanada craze and make all different kinds of empanadas for weeks.  Actually, my Grandma Esther did the same thing, hmm…One time my Grandma Esther made pineapple empanadas and I told her that my Grandma Lupe made pumpkin empanadas and Esther told me that my Grandma Lupe didn’t know everything.  Well, she at least knew how to make pumpkin empanadas…

Your ingredients for the filling

Empanada Filling Ingredients

**I doubled the recipe when making mine but this recipe will make 16 empanadas**

1 15oz can of pumpkin, 1/2 cup sugar (I used brown sugar instead but Grandma Lupe used regular sugar), 1/4 teaspoon salt, 1/2 teaspoon cinnammon, 1/4 teaspoon ginger, 1/8 teaspoon cloves, 1/8 teaspoon nutmeg (Grandma Lupe didn’t use nutmeg but I do)

Your ingredients for the dough

Dough Ingredients

1/3 cup water (don’t be afraid to add more water by the handful if the dough gets dry), 1/4 cup sugar (remember, brown sugar is just as good), 1 teaspoon salt, 2 packets of dry yeast (or 4 1/2 teaspoons if you don’t have packets, like me), 1/8 teaspoon baking powder, one tablespoon of cinnammon, 3 cups flour (divided), 3/4 cup veggie shortening.

Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees

For the filling, mix everything together and set aside.  Resist the urge to dip your finger into the mixture for about a minute and then say “Screw it” and dip your finger in and lick the filling off your finger.

Filling

Do this about four more times.  Maybe five.  Six.  Better yet, do it eight times.  Growing up I always volunteered to fill the empanadas because it meant being able to eat all the filling I wanted while the older women made the dough.  It also meant I was the one who had a stomach ache later in the evening.

Combine water, sugar, salt, yeast, baking powder, and cinnammon.  Gradually add half the flour into the mix and then add the shortening.  Once it’s all mixed up, add the remaining flour.

Divide the dough into four equal parts and roll into balls.  Roll each ball out until it’s about 1/8 of an inch in thickness and cut into circles that are about four inches in diameter (I used my large martini glasses).  Put about a tablespoon of filling in the middle of the circle and then fold over.  You can use either a fork or your finger to press the sides but make sure you use some kind of sealant like water to keep them closed.

Bake for 18-20 minutes, checking on them often because they can burn easily.

Empanadas

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How to Make a Roast in Ten Easy Steps

Get a casserole dish

Casserole dish

Put meat in casserole dish

Meat in dish

Pick up knife, make slits in meat

Meat Slits

Grab a clove of garlic and slice it up

Garlic

Put slices of garlic into slits in meat

Garlic in meat

Pour broth over meat

Broth Meat

Put in oven at 375 degrees

Roast in Oven

Chop up two potatoes and carrots

Potatoes and Carrots

After fifteen minutes, add potatoes and carrots to roast

Roast in Oven

After forty-five minutes, take out of oven and serve

Roast

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