Thursday, August 12, 2010

French Onion Soup 2

It's onion season at my house, so I gave French Onion Soup a try again today. I adapted the recipe from my notes the last time I made it, and here's the new and improved recipe:

French Onion Soup (by Avalie)
4 Tbsp Butter
1 Tbsp Kosher Salt
8 Medium Onions, thinly sliced
5 cups Water
2 tsp. Beef Bouillion
1/2 tsp. dried Thyme
French Bread
Gruyere or Swiss Cheese

Melt butter over medium-low heat in large skillet or wok. Add onions and salt and cook on medium-high. When onions are tender and begin to carmelize (about 45 mins), reduce heat to low and cook, stirring constantly, 15 minutes more until turn deep golden brown. Transfer onions to a soup pot. Add water, beef broth, and thyme. Heat to boil over high heat. Reduce heat to simmer for 30 minutes. If going to freeze, place soup in freezer containers or mason jars, let cool, cover, and freeze. When ready to eat, thaw soup, then preheat oven to 450. Cut French Bread into slices, place on baking sheet. Bake French Bread for 5-10 minutes to heat and make slightly crispy (this prevents the bread from getting mushy in your soup). Place oven-proof bowls on pan, spoon soup into bowls. Top soup with bread, then grate cheese onto bread. Bake 12-15 mins, until cheese has melted and begun to brown.

If you're eating away from home (lunch at work), you can reheat the soup in the microwave, with the shredded cheese on the top, and serve some french bread on the side for dipping. Enjoy!!

Monday, May 10, 2010


Another great crock pot recipe using dry beans! You can use Anaheim Peppers in place of the green chiles, if you have them.

Chalupa (Fix it and Forget it cookbook, adapted by Avalie)
3 lb pork roast
1 lb dry pinto beans
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 Tbsp ground cumin
1 Tbsp dried oregano
2 Tbsp chili powder
1 Tbsp salt
4-oz can chopped green chiles, or 1 Anaheim Chili, seeded and minced

Cover beans with water and soak overnight in slow cooker. In the morning, remove beans (reserve soaking water), and put roast in bottom of cooker. Add remaining ingredients (including beans and their soaking water) and more water if needed to cover ingredients. Cook on High 1 hour, them Low 6 hours. Remove meat and shred with two forks. Return meat to slow cooker. Cook on high 1 more hour. Serve in tortillas, over chips, or over bed of lettuce with grated cheese and chopped onions adn tomatoes. To freeze, let chalupa cool. Put in Quart-sized Ziploc freezer bags. I like to freeze 2 to 3 cups (that's how much my family will eat for one meal) in each bag. Squeeze air out of bag and seal. Label bag with contents, then lay flat to freeze. To reheat, remove chalupa from Ziploc bag and microwave until heated through.

Anaheim Peppers

We got a bunch of Anaheim Peppers in our Bountiful Basket this week, and I found a great recipe to use them. It's a bit like a red enchilada sauce, but it's spicy. To reduce the heat, just remove the seeds before broiling. This is very similar to the Tomatillo Salsa Recipe. I learned that you can sub Anaheim peppers for any recipe that calls for green chiles, you just need to seed and broil them first. Another option is to make the Tomatillo Salsa (last posting), and sub 4 Anaheim peppers for the jalapenos.

Anaheim Red Sauce
10-12 tomatoes
1 small onion, quartered
5 Anaheim Peppers, stems removed
1 rounded Tbsp chopped garlic
3/4 cup chopped cilantro
1/4 tsp cumin
1 rounded Tbsp salt
1 Tbsp lime juice

Preheat the broiler. Place tomatoes, onion quarters, and Anaheim peppers in a baking dish (remember not to use glass under your broiler!). Roast the vegetables under the broiler for 8-10 minutes, or until they begin to blacken. Remove from the oven and cool. When cool, transfer the vegetables, and any liquid that has seeped out, along with the rest of the ingredients to a blender or food processor and puree. If sauce is too runny for your liking, simply bring to a boil, stirring constantly, reduce to a simmer in a pan on the stovetop for 5 to 10 minutes, or until thickened. Use as a red enchilada sauce or a salsa. Delicious! Freezes beautifully (in jars or your favorite enchilada recipe).

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Mexican Salsas and More

So I've embarked on a new adventure with Bountiful Baskets Co-Op, and I've been challenged to find great recipes using all of the fabulous produce we get every week. Here's some ideas for tomatoes, tomatillos, and other delicious items. The Pico de Gallo and Guacamole don't freeze (obviously), but the Tomatillo recipes do. These make a great addition to the Black Beans and Rice (just put "black" in the search function at the top of the blog). You can make a smothered burrito with beans and rice in the middle, a little cheese, chicken/beef, and whatever else sounds good to you. Then pour the tomatillo salsa over the top. Add sour cream and guac and...OLE! Enjoy.

Avy’s Pico de Gallo
2 cups tomatoes, chopped
¾ cup cilantro, chopped
1 cup onion, chopped
2 Tbsp garlic, minced
1-2 Tbsp salt
1-2 tsp lime juice

Mix together all ingredients.
Refrigerate, serve chilled (flavor deepens if refrigerated overnight before serving)
If you want to make a blended salsa instead of a chunky pico, just add 1 cup at a time to blender. Pulse to blend.

Chevy’s Guacamole
3 avocados
1 Tbsp lime juice
½ cup Pico de Gallo
1 ½ tsp chopped garlic
1 tsp olive oil
1 tsp stemmed, seeded, and minced jalapeño
1 tsp salt

Pit the avocados. Score avocado meat without cutting through the skin. Scoop out the avocado meat with a large spoon and place in mixing bowl. Add the lime juice, and stir to evenly coat the avocados. Stir in the Pico de Gallo, garlic, oil, jalepeno, and salt, gently mashing and tossing the avocado pieces. The guacamole is the right consistency when more large pieces than mashed parts remain. Do not overmash.

Chevy’s Fresh Mex Tomatillo Salsa
1 lb tomatillos, husked
½ onion, quartered
4-10 jalapeños, stemmed
1 rounded tablespoon chopped garlic
¾ cup chopped cilantro
¼ tsp cumin
½ Tbsp salt
1 Tbsp lime juice

Preheat the broiler. Place the tomatillos, onion quarters, and jalapenos in a baking dish. Roast the vegetables under the broiler for 8-10 mins, or until they begin to blacken. Remove from the oven and cool. When cool, transfer the vegetables and any liquid that has seeped out, along with the rest of the ingredients to a blender or food processor and puree. Serve chilled. Makes 2 cups. Freezes well.

Chevy’s Tomatillo Salsa Verde
1 lb tomatillos, husked
3 jalapenos, stemmed, seeded, and cut in half
½ onion, quartered
¼ tsp ground cumin
¼ cup chopped cilantro
½ tsp salt

In a stockpot over high heat, boil the tomatillos, jalapeños, and onion in water to cover for 5 minutes. Cook just until al dente, not soft, breaking up the onion quarters as they boil. Drain off the cooking water and transfer the boiled vegetables to a blender or food processor. Add the remaining ingredients and blend until smooth. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator until ready to use or for up to 3 days. Makes about 2 cups. Freezes well.

Check out my Caribbean beans and rice recipe, and my black bean recipe.
Both make excellent burritos with any of these salsas on top!

Enjoy your Mexican Food!!