Multi-Cultural Week: Italian and Mexican

Favorite Recipe This Week: Roasted Veggie and Black Bean Burritos

Sunday

We had left over torn bread from last week’s sandwich binge so we made a bread soup.

Papa al Pomodoro adapted from Rachael Ray

3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, 3 turns of the pan, plus some for drizzling
4 to 6 cloves garlic, chopped
1 medium onion, finely chopped
1 (15-ounce) can diced tomatoes
1 (28-ounce) can crushed tomatoes
Salt and pepper
1 quart chicken or veggie stock
4 cups, about 1/2 pound, chopped or torn stale bread
2 (15-ounce) cans small white beans, such as Goya brand (smaller than cannellini beans) (optional)
shaved Parmigiano-Reggiano – use fresh and use a peeler to shave it
10 fresh basil leaves, torn
Heat a medium soup pot over medium heat. Add 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, garlic and onion. Cook 7 to 8 minutes, then add tomatoes and crushed tomatoes and season with salt and pepper. Add stock and raise heat to make the soup bubble. Reduce heat to simmer and add bread and beans. Stir soup as it simmers until it thickens to a stew-like consistency. Turn off heat, adjust seasonings, add basil and ladle into shallow bowls. Top with shaved cheese and additional drizzle of extra-virgin olive oil. Bnote: leftovers are good with queso fresco, fried eggs and pesto as shown below 🙂

Monday

C&C came over and made ME dinner in my OWN kitchen! How sweet! I have never really experimented with spaghetti squash, so they came and made me a spaghetti squash al fredo! Yum!

Tuesday

This week I was mainly alone for dinner as “B” was traveling here there and everywhere. I have a good friend, “Bef” who eats alone often. She is the one who hooked me on Hungry Girl for many of the inspirations for nights when I’m alone. So I texted her and asked what her favorite “single” person meal is…and not surprisingly (if you know Bef), she answered Tacos. So I thought about tacos and recalled my other good friend KT talking about a burrito recipe that she enjoyed. In the past I went on a burrito kick where I would make tons of burritos on a sunday and freeze them and then take them for work. By the time lunch came around the burrito would be unfrozen and ready for a little microwave action. So I figured if there were extra, I could just do the same with this recipe from KT. I wound up making it on Tuesday night (one of the nights “B” was actually home). Ok, let me rewind… My PLAN was to roast the veggies Tuesday night and make the burritos for myself on Wednesday…but when “B” came home and smelled the veggies, he opted for burritos instead of leftovers from Sunday.

So here’s the burrito recipe (instead of the spices suggested, I used Arizona no Salt spice from Penzy’s and I was out of cilantro and I don’t always love it so I left it out):

Roasted Veggie and Black Bean Burritos

2 whole Sweet Potatoes, Peeled And Cubed Small
2 whole Jalapenos Diced (I used one after KT warned me they were spicy)
1 whole Red Pepper, Diced Small
1 whole Red Onion, Diced Small
2 teaspoons Olive Oil
1 teaspoon Cumin
1 teaspoon Chili Powder
1 pinch Salt And Pepper
1 can Black Beans, Rinsed And Drained (15 Ounce Can)
½ cups Fresh Cilantro, Chopped
2 teaspoons Fresh Lime Juice
2 cups Shredded Cheddar
1 package Burrito-Sized Wheat Tortillas Or Wraps (6-10 Count)
In a bowl, toss your raw veggies in olive oil and season with spices. Place in a large baking dish and roast in 425 degree oven for 20 minutes, tossing around halfway through.

Let cool. Add your roasted veggies to a can of rinsed black beans. Add cilantro and squirt of lime juice. Combine gently. At this point, mixture can be stored for later use.

Warm your wheat tortillas or wraps in microwave according to directions on package. Spray a casserole dish with nonstick spray or olive oil spray.

Add two heaping tablespoons of vegetable and bean mixture to center of wrap. Top with shredded cheese. Fold over, fold in sides, place in pan and continue to roll the others. Place into your baking dish, seam side down so that they stay together.

Bake in 375 degree oven for about 15 minutes or until golden brown. Baking this way will make the tortilla wrap crisp. For a softer burrito, spray burrito with nonstick spray, then wrap in aluminum foil and bake for same amount of time.

Serve with locally made sour cream and tomato/salsa purée (recipe in prior posts) if available and desired.

Makes about 6 burritos.

The rest of the week:
Leftovers of Soup and Burritos! This is also the week that Chocolate Chobani found its way into our life permanently!

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Beautiful Stacks of Food On and In-Between Bread

This week we made a new batch of the sauce “B” made for his fish tacos last week and used it on almost every meal!

Favorite Recipe this week: Open-Faced Sandwiches with Mushrooms and Fried Eggs
This Week’s Grocery List

Sunday

We saw the most beautiful dish in the new Cooking Light we received so we had to try it – Tomato Stack Salad with Corn and Avocado! While sometimes we can swing a side dish as a main meal, this one didn’t have any protein or carbs in it so we grilled up some tofu to go with it. “B” slathered the tofu with the sauce he used for the fish tacos last week (See FRIDAY’s recipe from last week) and it was spicy and delicious!

Tomato Stack Salad with Corn and Avocado

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  • 1/4 cup low-fat buttermilk (We use a splash of cider vinegar and the rest regular milk– let it sit for five minutes and ta-da – buttermilk!)
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh chives
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh basil
  • 2 tablespoons mayonnaise
  • 2 teaspoons cider vinegar
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, divided
  • 2 ears shucked corn
  • Cooking spray
  • 2 large beefsteak tomatoes, cut into 8 (1/2-inch-thick) slices total
  • 2 globe tomatoes, cut into 8 (1/2-inch-thick) slices total
  • 1/8 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 ripe peeled avocado, thinly sliced
  • 4 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil

Preparation
1. Combine buttermilk and next 5 ingredients (through garlic), stirring with a whisk. Stir in 1/4 teaspoon pepper.
2. Coat corn with cooking spray. Place corn on grill rack; grill 8 minutes or until well marked, turning occasionally. Remove from grill; cool slightly. Cut corn kernels from cobs. We also grilled the Tomato slices because, hey why not!
3. Sprinkle tomato slices evenly with salt. Alternate layers of tomato and avocado on each of 4 plates. Scatter corn evenly onto plates. Drizzle each tomato stack with about 1 1/2 tablespoons dressing and 1 teaspoon oil. Sprinkle remaining 1/4 teaspoon black pepper over salads.

Adapted from Cooking Light AUGUST 2012

Monday

Newlyweds C&C came over for dinner! “B” really wanted to impress with his fish tacos, but I kind of remembered that one of the Mrs. C didn’t really like fish. Luckily we had some marinated chicken in the freezer. So we took that out and grilled it up for tacos as well. This was my first time actually tasting the entire “oh-my-gosh, you-have-to-try-this” fish taco and it was actually pretty good. It seemed that C&C enjoyed them as well.

Tuesday

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Pizzzzzzza! Love Pizza! This time we had an AH-HA moment. What if we used last week’s piadine recipe and just rolled it out larger to make pizza dough on the grill?! Brilliant! We made the piadine recipe and the split the dough in two. Half was rolled out to a make one pizza and the second half was placed in the freezer for another time. We had left over of the fish taco sauce so we used that as the “tomato” sauce. We also used kalamata olives, arugula, spinach, sun-dried tomatoes and mozzarella for the topping. It grilled up pretty quickly on the bottom, so we finished melting the cheese by placing the entire pizza in the oven for a little bit. Overall it was a nice thin crust crunch grilled pizza. What we LOVE about pizza is you really can’t go wrong…put anything you have in fridge on there! — well ALMOST anything!

Wednesday

We rarely have steak, but we saw this recipe in the recent issue of Cooking Light and decided to try it:

Steak Sandwiches with Pickled Onion and Herb Aioli

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  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1/4 cup cider vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 cup thinly sliced red onion
  • 1/4 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh or dried (just use less) thyme
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh or dried tarragon
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1 pound flank steak, trimmed
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 (12-ounce) French bread baguette
  • 1 cup arugula leaves

Preparation

1. Combine first 3 ingredients in a medium microwave-safe bowl; microwave at HIGH 2 minutes or until boiling. Stir in onion. Let stand at room temperature for 30 minutes.

2. Preheat grill to medium-high heat.

3. Combine mayonnaise and next 4 ingredients (through garlic).

4. Rub steak evenly with oil; sprinkle with salt and pepper. Place steak on grill rack; grill 5 minutes on each side or until desired degree of doneness. Remove from grill; let stand 5 minutes. Cut steak across the grain into thin slices.

5. Cut baguette in half lengthwise. Hollow out top and bottom halves of bread, leaving a 1/2-inch-thick shell; reserve torn bread for another use. Place bread, cut sides down, on grill rack; grill 1 minute or until toasted.

6. Drain onion mixture; discard liquid. Arrange steak evenly over bottom half of baguette; top evenly with onion and arugula. Spread mayonnaise mixture over cut side of top baguette half; place on sandwich. Cut into 4 pieces.

Cooking Light AUGUST 2012

Thursday

This recipe is from the same issue of cooking light and yes, it’s another sandwich, but it was our favorite this week. (Though the first time we made it, “B” made the mushrooms way too salty for “F”‘s tastes) Try this recipe and feel free to change it up. On Saturday night we made a version of this but used grilled veggies instead of mushrooms–yum!

Open-Faced Sandwiches with Mushrooms and Fried Eggs

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  • 4 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • 1 cup thinly sliced shallots, divided
  • 1 (8-ounce) package presliced cremini mushrooms (or whatever kind you would like)
  • 2 tablespoons dry white wine
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, divided
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 8 teaspoons refrigerated pesto
  • 4 (1 1/2-ounce) slices multigrain bread
  • 2 ounces grated fresh Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese (about 1/2 cup)
  • 4 large eggs
  • 8 (1/4-inch-thick) slices beefsteak tomato
  • 3 tablespoons chopped fresh basil

1. Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add 2 teaspoons oil to pan; swirl to coat. Add 2/3 cup shallots; cook 3 minutes. Add mushrooms; cook 4 minutes or until tender, stirring occasionally. Add wine, 1/4 teaspoon pepper, and salt; bring to a boil, scraping pan to loosen browned bits. Cook 2 minutes or until liquid almost evaporates, stirring occasionally. Remove mushroom mixture from pan; keep warm.

2. Return pan to medium heat. Add 1 teaspoon oil to pan; swirl to coat. Add remaining 1/3 cup shallots; sauté 5 minutes or until lightly browned. Remove shallots from pan; keep warm.

3. Preheat broiler to high.

4. Spread 2 teaspoons pesto over one side of each bread slice. Top each slice with about 2 tablespoons cheese. Broil 2 minutes or until cheese melts; keep warm.

5. Return pan to medium heat. Add remaining 1 teaspoon oil to pan; swirl to coat. Crack eggs into pan, and cook 4 minutes or until whites are set.

6. Top each bread slice with 2 tomato slices. Divide mushroom mixture evenly among bread slices, and top each serving with 1 egg. Sprinkle with remaining 1/4 teaspoon pepper, shallots, and basil.

Cooking Light, AUGUST 2012

Friday

It was the opening ceremony of the Olympics so we went to J&Z’s house for tea sandwiches and tea! How British! One of our favorite tea sandwiches was when “B” found some date nut bread in the refrigerated section of the grocery store and spread whipped cream cheese and sliced strawberries on it…. yum!