Thursday, May 21, 2015

Not as Quick as Mom's Chili but Good in a Different Way

(Recipe mostly from SmittenKitchen -- check out her photos to see how great it looks!)

1 T olive oil
1 medium onion, diced
2-3 peppers, whatever spicy-ness you can handle (I do 2 Bell and 1 jalapeƱo, seeded)
1 t minced garlic
2 T chili powder
2 t cumin
1 1/2 t table salt
1 T unsweetened cocoa
1/2 t oregano
2 15 oz. cans fire-roasted tomatoes
3-4 cans beans, whichever kinds, drained and rinsed
1 pound hamburger

Heat oil in pan; saute onions on med-low about 10 minutes. Add peppers, saute additional 5 minutes. Add garlic, chili powder, cumin, oregano, salt, cocoa, and oregano; cook until browned and just starting to stick to the pan. Throw this mixture and the tomatoes and beans into the crockpot with a cup of water. In the pan you just emptied, brown the hamburger and add to the crockpot. Cook on high for 3-4 hours. Serve with sour cream, shredded cheddar, lime slices, extra diced onion, fresh cilantro, and tortilla chips. Serves 4-6.

Story: Like the moth to a flame, I'm drawn to recipes that meet these criterian: 1. Can be prepped during Zane's nap.  2. Makes a large amount, which can be easily frozen and reheated later.  3. Don't require a ton of dishes.  4. Are just a little unusual.  Hope you try this one! Or, come over -- I'll make it for you! :)

Sunday, May 3, 2015

Sweet & Spicy BBQ Pork

Menu Idea:
Mexican Rice (easy version: Replace half the water with salsa when cooking.)
Shredded lettuce
Sour Cream
BBQ Pork
to fill a warmed tortilla

3 pounds pork (I usually use stew meat or a combo of chicken/pork if that's what's in the freezer)
1 can Rotel (diced tomatoes and green chilies)
1 cup Coke
1 cup brown sugar
1 T chili powder
1/4 t garlic powder
1/4 t crushed red pepper flakes
1/4 t dried oregano
1/2 t paprika
1 1/2 t ground cumin
1/2 t salt

Put the thawed meat in the crockpot with about 4 cups water. Cook on high for around 5 hours. Drain off the liquid and shred the meat. Add the rest of the ingredients, continue to cook on high for about 4 more hours. Finish shredding meat right before serving.

I first tried a recipe similar to this after experiencing Cafe Rio's Sweet Pork, and this is my favorite version yet -- and this is the meal Blair requests more than anything else I make. I like how easy it is, and how versatile the leftovers are -- we eat them in quesadillas, on sandwiches, and over salad.