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Posts Tagged ‘Beans’

I got this recipe from a friend, and it is oh so good!! I love beans, and as we all know, JW is a huge fan of rice. So this was a great meal for us, and easy and cheap too!

Red Beans and Rice

  • One package of smoked sausage (can use spicy)
  • One bag of red beans
  • One green pepper, diced
  • One red pepper, diced
  • 4 stalks of celery, diced
  • 7 cups of water
  • 1 T of Cajun seasoning

Add all ingredients to crock pot and cook on high for 7 hours. Serve over rice.

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It’s officially chili weather! It’s taking a while for the cool weather to set in here, but we’re definitely enjoying lower temperatures.

I’ve made a few chili recipes in the past, but we always end up coming back to this one – it’s one we made up a while back, and it’s also ridiculously easy. You can easily double or triple it, freeze it if you need to, whatever.

I think I may make a BIG batch of this pre-baby to keep in the freezer, so we have it to eat later!

Favorite Chili

  • 1 lb ground beef
  • 1 can chili-ready tomatoes
  • 1 can Bush’s chili beans [or regular pinto beans]
  • 2 Tbsp chili powder
  • Water or broth as desired, to thin

Brown and drain ground beef. Add all other ingredients, stir well, and simmer 30 minutes. If a thinner consistency is desired, add water or broth (I use broth if I’m using regular pinto beans – but water if I’m using chili beans).

Great with cornbread, cheese, Fritos, sour cream… etc.

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I have a few recipes I haven’t taken pictures of recently due to a misplaced memory card (and the aforementioned battery death) but hopefully all of that will be sorted out in the very near future.

I strongly encourage you to take a peek at the photo of this cassoulet from Kitchenbelle’s blog here, and see if it doesn’t just make your mouth water.

The dish itself was fantastic. I halved the recipe but used 4 chicken sausages instead of 3, because that was how many came in the package and I’m not a wasteful person. Plus, what would I do with one lone sausage?

Also I didn’t add celery because I didn’t feel like buying any or cutting it up. I’m listing the recipe as I made it (except not halved), and you can take a look at the original if you want to add things like celery and rosemary, which I would have added if I had any.

I have to say, this was delicious, and easy! It would be wonderful in the winter, but of course I’m not going to wait that long to make a dish like this. We had it with crusty french bread and it really hit the spot.

White Bean Cassoulet (Original recipe here)

  • 10 cloves garlic, sliced (I used the jarred minced stuff)
  • 1 medium white onion, diced
  • 2 carrots, peeled and diced
  • 4 cans cannellini beans
  • 2-4 cups chicken stock
  • 6 chicken sausages, sliced

In a dutch oven, warm the olive oil and brown the sausages until no longer pink.  Remove from pan and set aside.

Add garlic, onion, and carrots, and cook until vegetables are soft. Add chicken stock and beans. Bring to a boil and simmer 45-60 minutes.  Drain away some stock if the texture is too “liquidy.” Add sausage slices and cook an additional ten minutes.

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We’ve been on a vegetarian kick with meals this week. JW wanted a salad for dinner on Monday, so we created our own little salad bar. Dinner last night was this chili, and tonight we’re doing ratatouille. I’m sure meat will make an appearance next week, primarily because I have nearly exhausted my list of vegetarian recipes that don’t taste like cardboard.

I was attracted to this dish for two reasons – one, because I love beans and I’m always up for trying a new bean dish, and two, because it was originally a Cooks Illustrated recipe, and Cooks Illustrated is my hero. We thought it was good, although as JW put it, “very tomatoey.” I’d like to try adding something to cut the brightness of the tomatoes, but for a 30-minute healthy dish, I’d say this was really very good.

Oh also, because JW does not like corn, I added an extra can of beans. I’m giving it to you with my adjustments.

Cornbread recipe to follow, hopefully tomorrow.

Easy Vegetarian Bean Chili (Original recipe here)

CI Note: A combination of beans is better in this (kidney, black, pinto, whatever). Also, don’t sub in anything for the pureed diced tomatoes, as the consistency is vital.

  • 1 (28-ounce) can diced tomatoes
  • 3 (15-ounce) cans beans (see note above), drained and rinsed
  • 2-3 teaspoons minced chipotle chiles in adobo sauce
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • salt and ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 onion, minced
  • 3 tablespoons chili powder
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced

Pour tomatoes and the accompanying juices in a food processor. Pulse 4 or 5 times, until it’s kinda chunky.

In a large pot (dutch oven), combine tomatoes, beans, chipotles, sugar, and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Stir and cover. Heat over high until it starts boiling. Drop heat to medium-low and simmer for the time being.

In a large skillet, heat oil over medium heat. When very hot, add onion, chili powder, cumin, and 1/4 teaspoon salt. Stir. Saute until onions are soft and a little translucent, around 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add garlic. Stir. Saute until fragrant, 30 seconds to 1 minute.

Add onion mixture into pot with tomatoes and beans. Scrape browned bits with the back of your spoon, if you have any, and add them too. Drop heat to medium-low and cook about 15 minutes, until chili has a more chili-like consistency. Stir occasionally.

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Do you see these? These are Pioneer Woman’s Pinto Beans. Simple and delicious, easy to make and good for you. They start with dry beans, but no overnight soaking required – just rinse and boil. Add some bacon (can’t go wrong there) and whatever spices you like. Voila! Dinner 🙂

Note: These cooked a little faster for me than the 2 hours PW allowed. Just be aware of how your stove cooks (mine runs hot) and taste along the way.

Pioneer Woman’s Pinto Beans (Original recipe here)

  • 4 cups Pinto Beans
  • 4 slices Thick Bacon
  • 1 teaspoon Salt
  • 2 teaspoons Ground Black Pepper

Rinse beans in cool water; pour into a pot, cover with water by 2 to 3 inches. Slice bacon into 1-inch pieces and add to pot. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and cover. Simmer 2 hours, or until beans are tender. Add water to pot as needed. Beans should have a thick broth. Toward end of cooking time, add salt and pepper and season to taste. Don’t over-salt. For a variety try adding chili powder, garlic or Tabasco, or pinto bean seasoning. Serve with cornbread or rice. Can serve with small bowls of grated cheese, chopped onions, chopped fresh jalapenos, sour cream, and/or cilantro.

Now P-Dub serves her beans with cornbread, and I for one LOVE me some good cornbread, but poor JW is sadly not a huge fan. I know, I know… he is missing out on cornbread awesomeness. So instead, we decided to have our beans with Mexican Rice. I’ve had a recipe I’ve been meaning to try for ages and this finally gave me the chance to make it.

[See the white striped shirt in the background? That is JW saying “Hurry up, woman, put the stupid camera away so I can eat”]

I’ve made several Mexican/Spanish Rice recipes in the past, and they’ve all been a little “blah” – something is missing, not sure what it is. But THIS recipe on the other hand, well… it’s just amazing.

I’m not kidding. You have to try this rice.

As you’ll see, the recipe calls for 2 cups of uncooked rice, which is twice the amount I usually use if I’m making rice for myself and JW. I considered halving the recipe, but decided against it and went ahead and made the full recipe.

It was gone the next day. The whole entire freakin bowl. We just couldn’t stop eating it! It was so good. And it really went well with the beans.

I’m thinking I might have to make it again very very soon.

Mexican Rice (Original recipe here)

  • 2 cups rice (uncooked)
  • 4 cups water
  • 2-3 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1/2 onion (small dice)
  • 3 cloves garlic (minced)
  • 2 tbsp. powdered chicken bullion
  • 1/2 teas. salt
  • 1 teas. pepper
  • 2 tsp chili powder
  • 6oz. (3/4 cup) red enchilada sauce (mild)

Preheat a 3-5 quart sauce pan on medium heat and add the olive oil. Add the rice and saute for 8 to 10 minutes to slightly brown the rice – stir often or it will burn.

Carefully add the water as it will steam when it hits the pan and can burn you.

Add all other ingredients and give it a good stir to blend. Bring to a boil and then reduce heat to low and simmer covered for about 20 minutes, until all of the liquid has been absorbed. Remove from heat.

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Due to a small miscommunication with our gas company, our gas was shut off unexpectedly about a week ago. When they came out to our house, the hot water heater and range came back on, but the heat did not. Lucky for us, we have made do for the past week with a couple of space heaters (of which every hardware store in Houston orders 3 at the beginning of winter, and does not reorder when they sell out, so it is nearly impossible to find one in February).

I don’t care who you are – even in Houston, and even with space heaters, a house with no heat in the middle of winter is freakin cold. So finally yesterday we called our home warranty (thank you, seller of our new house, for purchasing a home warranty for us) and they sent someone out today to fix it. Yea! I am super excited that I don’t have to dread getting out of the shower anymore.

That said, I do realize that most parts of the country are experiencing blizzard-like conditions at the moment as a winter storm the size of Jupiter meanders across the United States, and that our high-40’s temperatures really aren’t all that impressively cold to you guys. And to that all I have to say is…

Cold is cold. Period. And on cold days, one of the best meals to warm up with is chili. It’s warm, cozy, and can be (like this one) healthy as well.

I encourage you to try this with chicken and/or turkey as called for in the recipe. If you have true texture issues with ground poultry, of course you can use beef. Regardless of your choice of meat, the flavor of the spices and other ingredients really makes this a great chili. Because of some things that came up last night, I didn’t quite follow the cook time. I let it cook a little over an hour and stirred in the beans right before serving.

Of course, like most chilis, it was excellent the second day as well.

Chicken Chili With White Beans (Original recipe here)
Note: This is not a spicy chili. If you want more heat, increase the cayenne or red pepper flakes.

  • 3 tablespoons chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 2 teaspoons ground coriander
  • ¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 2 teaspoons salt, divided
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 2 cups onions, chopped (about 2 medium onions)
  • 1 red bell pepper, diced
  • 6 medium cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 pounds ground chicken and/or turkey (not extra lean breast meat)
  • Two 28 oz. cans chopped or diced tomatoes (I used one crushed because it was what I had)
  • 2 cups low-sodium chicken broth (or use regular and decrease the salt a little bit)
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1-15 oz. can small Cannellini beans, drained and rinsed

Make spice mixture by combining chili powder, cumin, coriander, red pepper flakes, oregano, cayenne pepper and 1 teaspoon salt in small bowl. Mix well and set aside next to stove.

Heat oil in a large, heavy-bottomed nonreactive (not cast iron or aluminum) pot over medium heat. Add onions and red bell pepper and cook, stirring frequently, until softened, about 10 minutes. Add garlic and cook, stirring to prevent garlic from burning, about two minutes more.

Increase heat to medium high and add the ground chicken and spice mixture. As the chicken cooks, use a wooden spoon to break the meat into very small clumps; cook until no longer pink, about 5 minutes.

Add tomatoes, chicken broth, remaining teaspoon salt and sugar. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low and simmer, partially covered (set lid ajar so steam has a few inches to escape), for about one hour, stirring occasionally.

Stir in white beans and let simmer, uncovered, for about 50 minutes more, or until meat is tender and flavors are well combined. For a soupier chili, you can add additional water. For a thicker chili, simmer uncovered until desired consistency is reached. Taste and add salt if necessary.

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JW has started a workout regime with a coworker of his who used to manage an LA Fitness. So lately he’s been asking for some healthier meals. I usually cook on the healthy side anyway, but I’ve tried to find some new things that are low in fat, sodium, and calories. This Mexican dish from Elly Says Opa (who adapted it from Mexican Everyday by Rick Bayless) fell perfectly into that category. It incorporates a lot of chili powder, which gives it a great flavor boost.

I highly recommend this recipe if you’re looking for something good, filling, healthy, and flavorful. It has a few steps, but is really very simple. You can eat it on its own, but we chose to make a stack-up taco salad of sorts, with lettuce, tomatoes, cheese, and guacamole.

Red Chile Chicken and Rice with Black Beans

  • 2 Tbsp. canola oil
  • 4 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves (1.25-1.5 lbs. total)
  • 2.5 Tbsp. ancho chili powder, divided
  • 1 medium onion, large dice
  • 1 cup rice
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1.5 cups chicken broth
  • 1 (15 oz.) can black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1/4 cup chopped green onions, roots and wilted outer leaves removed before chopping (OR 1/3 cup cilantro OR 2-3 Tbsp. epazote or hoja santa)

Heat the oil in a medium-large heavy pot (with a lid) over medium-high heat. Sprinkle both sides of the chicken breast with salt and 1 Tbsp. of the ancho chili powder. Place the chicken in the hot oil and brown on each side, 2-3 minutes. Remove to a plate, leaving behind as much oil as possible.

Add the onion and rice to the pot. Stir for several minutes, until the rice turns from translucent to opaque. Add the garlic and the remaining 1.5 Tbsp. ancho chili powder. Cook one minute, and then add the broth and salt to taste. Stir well. When the mixture comes to a boil, reduce the heat to medium-low. Cover, and cook for 10 minutes.

Cut the chicken breast into 1″ pieces.  Add them to the pot along with the beans. Re-cover and cook 12 minutes longer.

Sprinkle the green onions and test a kernel of rice.  It should  have no more than a hint of chalkiness at in the center, in which case you place the cover back on, remove it from the heat and let it stand 5-10 minutes.  If it’s not cooked, cook for another 5 minutes or so.

Fluff the mixture with a fork and serve with salsa for each person to spoon on al gusto.

In other news, Blade went back to the kennel and we picked up some foster puppies that we have named Melbourne and Diesel. They are about 8 weeks old now and once we’re through treating them for one or two things, they’ll be ready for adoption. The tentative bring-back date is Wednesday, but I’m skeptical that they’ll be ready by then. This is our first time puppy fostering, and although it’s a different kind of experience, it’s really not been too difficult – and not nearly as messy as I expected! Wood laminate floors help a ton 🙂

Plus these boys are super-cuddlers so they really steal your heart away. That helps a ton too.

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