Saturday, February 3, 2018

Tex-Mex Lite

Before Dear Husband and I got married in 2005, friends and family threw me a surprise bridal shower disguised as a surprise birthday for DH. It was fantastic. Guests had been asked to bring me copies of their favorite recipes. I'm sorry to say most of the cards have never been smudged with flour or spattered with oil, as DH and I largely either cooked dishes with which we were already familiar, or else looked up recipes online to fit ingredients we had. For most of our marriage, we shared cooking duties 50/50, each of us typically preparing one large meal per week so we could alternate leftovers. For the first 1.5 years of residency, however, I was lucky to come home to eat dinner with DH, never mind make it for the both of us. Now that my schedule has lightened up somewhat, I've made a New Year's resolution to cook more from my collection of recipes, both cards and books. Tonight DH chose a low-fat, vegetarian Tortilla-Black Bean Casserole an old family friend had gifted me.


1. Sign on to Xfinity in time for the start of a M*A*S*H marathon. Discover you forgot to purchase tortillas at the grocery store; send faithful spouse to Walgreens to get some.

2. Chop 1 large onion and 2 cloves of garlic while some oil heats in a large skillet. Next time make the pieces of onion larger.

3. Heat oven to 350 degrees. Saute onion, garlic, 1 can undrained tomatoes, and 2 tsp cumin in the oil. Unsure what picante sauce is, substitute some red pepper flakes.

4. After the mixture boils, reduce heat, add 2 cans drained black beans. Simmer ~10 minutes while you chop 2 large red or green peppers.

5. Spread 1/3 of the bean mixture + bell pepper in a 3-quart dish. Top with tortillas (either six 6-inch or 2 8-inch tortillas). Sprinkle 1 cup of shredded Monterrey Jack cheese. Spread another 1/3 of the bean + pepper mixture, then more tortillas, then the last 1/3 of the beans + peppers.

6. Bake, covered, for ~30 minutes. Sprinkle with 1 cup shredded cheese and let stand 10 minutes.

7. You can top with shredded lettuce, tomato, green onion, and olives, but we served it on a bed of lettuce with plain yogurt (or sour cream) on top. Makes 6 hot, gooey servings. Would pair well with tortilla chips and guacamole.

Editor's Note: You might also like Taco Friday.

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