Salsa, a recipe for the not-so-cooking inclined

Posted on September 5, 2008. Filed under: Attempts at Cooking | Tags: , , , , , , , , |

Usually I read 1 book a week and detail that and do a review, but this week I am behind and haven’t gotten to read much, so I decided why not do a review of cooking that I love?? And throw in some simple recipes just because!

First off lets just start by saying I am addicted to salsa.  I have always been a fan of Mexican/Spanish/Southwest food.  Honestly, cook me up an enchilada and that will be better than Thanksgiving Dinner. I am not of that descent – pretty opposite: I’m a German-Italian, mostly American with a father who detests the fiery Spanish/Mexican foods (I believe he can be quoted as once stating that they are the only group of chefs he knows that can ruin a steak). I don’t find this to be true at all – I can’t get enough of it!

There is nothing better on a chilly day (I enjoy it on warm summer days too) than a nice bowl of Chicken Tortilla soup – Delicious!! I haven’t yet mastered a recipe for that – if you have one please throw it my way! But I have on the other hand mastered a delicious and quick salsa, and a super quick (and delicious) southwest stir-fry. These are recipes I have used for years and hope you and yours enjoy them as much as I do (my stomach is started to rumble just thinking of the prospect of these dishes!) Keep in mind that I am by no means anywhere near being a gourmet chef, I say that I cook in the broadest of terms because what I do ‘cook’ is really quick and easy stir ’em together types of dishes, so please don’t expect gourmet.

Quick & Easy Salsa:

8 Ripe Plum Tomatoes : Diced
1/2      Red Onion: Diced
1/2 Green Bell Pepper: Diced
1 Small Jalapeno: Diced
2 Tbsp     Minced Garlic
4 Tbsp Lime Juice
2 Tbsp Salt
3 Tbsp Finely chopped fresh cilantro

The quick & Easy part: Stir up well and let it sit for one hour before devouring. With all of the amounts above just be sure to go by look, taste and smell. Depending on the size of your tomatoes and the amount of juices that enter the salsa through the veggies you may need more or less of the lime juice and garlic. Since you’ll be enjoying it you will be able to see what flavors work best for you in what amounts. Store in fridge

Southwest Stir-Fry
(Can be found on Betty Crocker at http://www.bettycrocker.com/Recipes/Recipe.aspx?recipeId=35289 )

2 tablespoons lime juice
2 teaspoons chili powder
1 pound boneless skinless chicken breast halves, cut into 1/2-inch strips
1       small zucchini
1 small yellow summer squash
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1/3 cup medium Picante Sauce sauce
tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro*** Add as many veggies as you think fit in! I love to add carrots & corn to this as well!

* Mix lime juice & chili powder in medium bowl; stir in chicken. Cover & refrigerate 15 minutes. Cut     zucchini & squash & other veggies to prep them into slices (try to make equal thickness for cooking)

*Heat 12-inch skillet (I use a wok) over high heat. Add 1 tbsp of Oil & coat the pan/skillet

* Add chicken & marinade; stir-fry until chicken is cooked (no pink in center). Remove, keep on side. Add the veggies to the now-empty pan and stir-fry for about 5 minutes, until veggies are crunchy/crisp. Add chicken, picante sauce, and cilantro; cook and stir until hot.

Hopefully I’ll be able to gather up some other good dishes and add them in a future post…

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