Calabacitas

Are you in need of a side dish for your dinner with a Mexican twist?  Do you love fresh squashes?  Colorful foods?  Adding vitamin C and powerful antioxidants to your diet?  Well then, you’re in luck as I have just the recipe for you!

simmering calabacitas

As an alternative, you could add some goat cheese to this dish and serve it as a vegetarian entree over brown rice.

Ingredients:

1 medium onion, cut in a large dice

4 medium cloves garlic, chopped

2 cups zucchini , diced into cubes

2 cups yellow squash, diced into cubes

15 oz can diced tomatoes, drained

4 oz can of diced green chili

4 Tablespoons chicken or vegetable broth

¼ cup chopped cilantro

3 Tablespoons chopped fresh oregano

salt and black pepper to taste

Directions:

  • Slice onion and chop garlic
  • Prepare all other vegetables
  • Heat 1 TBS broth in a large skillet. Sauté onions in broth over medium heat for about 5 minutes stirring frequently, until translucent. Add garlic and sauté for another minute.
  • Add zucchini, yellow squash, remaining broth, green chili, and cook for another 3 minutes or so until the vegetables are tender, stirring often
  • Add tomatoes and continue to cook for another couple of minutes
  • Stir in herbs, salt, and pepper

calabacitas as a side to salmon & brown rice

J

Adapted from a recipe posted on the world’s healthiest foods

Lentil Chili

I’m a sucker for well-prepared lentils (as is my sister) so when I came across a recipe for chili made with lentils rather than kidney beans I Had to try it (and have my sister over for dinner, of course).

It made for a perfect dinner on a cold night.  This recipe uses ancho chili powder for a very mild heat, with a super flavor.

Red bell peppers lend a sweetness, and opting for fire-roasted diced tomatoes added a different element of flavor to the profile.

Ingredients

8 cups chicken or vegetable broth, divided

1 onion, chopped

1 red bell pepper, chopped

5 cloves garlic, chopped

4 teaspoons ancho chili powder

16-ounces brown lentils (about 2 1/4 cups)

2 (15-ounce) cans diced tomatoes

1/4 cup chopped cilantro

Directions

  • Bring 3/4 cup broth to a simmer in a large pot over medium-high heat.
  • Add onion, bell pepper and garlic and cook about 8 minutes or until onion is clear and pepper is tender.
  • Stir in chili powder and cook for another minute, stirring constantly.
  • Add lentils, tomatoes and remaining 7 1/4 cups broth.
  • Bring to a boil, reduce heat to low and simmer, partially covered, for 30 minutes or until lentils are almost tender.
  • Uncover and cook 10 minutes longer. Stir in cilantro and serve.

We opted for spinach salads as a first course.  Since the chili was so lean we had goat cheese on crackers and a little bit of crumbled bacon on top.

And, of course, a nicely crusted French sourdough bread to dip in the chili 😉

Yummy dinner + fantastic company = happy Kitchbitch!

J

Layered Vegetable Enchiladas

I could not have been more impressed with this recipe.  The dish is packed with color and flavor and nutrients and wow!  This is a very different take on enchiladas than I’ve ever had before, and I love it.  When I make them next, I may add onions and mushrooms to the ingredients list as well as using ancho chili powder but only because those are my personal preferences and not because this dish needs any improvements.

Ingredients

2 cups frozen corn

1 cup bell pepper chunks

3 tablespoons lime juice (from 1 or 2 limes), divided

1 1/2 tablespoon chili powder, divided

1 (15-ounce) can of pinto or black beans, rinsed and drained

4 tablespoons chopped cilantro, divided

1 (15-ounce) can diced tomatoes

8 ounces collard greens

8 soft tortillas

3/4 cup shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese

Sour cream (optional)

Salsa (optional)

Directions

  • Preheat the oven to 400ºF.
  • In a large pot, combine corn, bell peppers, 2 tablespoons lime juice, 1 tablespoon chili powder, tomatoes and greens and cook over medium-high heat until liquid is almost evaporated, about 10 minutes.

  • Meanwhile, in a blender, puree beans with 2 tablespoons cilantro, with 1 tablespoon chili powder and 1 tablespoon lime juice.

  • Arrange four tortillas on a large parchment paper-lined baking sheet. Spread bean mixture evenly on tortillas. Top each with about 1/2 cup of the vegetable mixture and some cheese. Top with remaining tortillas, vegetables and cheese and bake until hot throughout and cheese is melted, about 15 minutes.

  • Transfer to plates, garnish with sour cream, salsa and remaining cilantro and serve.  You will definitely need forks and knives, and probably a few napkins on the table for this dish.

J