Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Sun-Dried Tomato Pasta

This recipe is a great food storage recipe.  You can store all the ingredients you need in your food storage.

The recipe uses the Meals in a Bag strategy.  I got the original recipe from the book, "Gluten Free Food Storage, It's in the Bag," which I would recommend!  I adapted this recipe a little.  All of the ingredients you need for the meal is in the bag, with the recipe with it!  When I make this recipe I like to use about 7 frozen chicken tenders that I thaw and cook in the saucepan first, (with some salt & pepper of course) instead of the canned chicken.  If I'm in a huge rush, or I'm having one of my kids make it, then I'll use the canned chicken breast.

8 cups water
16 oz GF pasta
1 (14.5 oz) can Italian diced tomatoes
1 (12 oz) can evaporated milk
1 (13 oz) can chicken meat, including broth, or 1 pint home-canned chicken breast

Resealable bag:
1 teaspoon salt for pasta

Resealable bag:
1 chicken bouillon cube
1 1/2 tablespoons dried basil
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder

In a large pot, bring 8 cups water to boil.  Add pasta and salt to boiling water and stir gently.  Return to boil and cook 14-15 minutes or according to desired pasta tenderness.  Remove from heat and drain.  In a medium sauce pan, combine remaining ingredients.  Cook over medium heat for 5 minutes.  Gently toss pasta with tomato sauce until pasta is thoroughly coated. 

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Cafe Rio Grilled Chicken Salad

We LOVE Cafe Rio and Costa Vida!  I've experimented with and adjusted some knock-off recipes, and I think you're going to love it!  Enjoy!

These are the ingredients for the salad.  Just start with the warmed corn tortillas on the bottom and build your salad from there!

Corn tortillas  - Heated with a little shredded Colby Jack cheese melted on it.
Black Beans
Lime Rice
Grilled Chicken
Green Leaf Lettuce
Pico de Gallo
Tortilla Strips
Tomatillo Dressing
Cotija Cheese
Fresh cilantro for garnish

Grilled Chicken
5 lbs chicken breast, boneless skinless
8 oz bottle Zesty Italian dressing
1 tablespoon chili powder
1 tablespoon cumin
1 garlic clove, minced
salt & pepper

Mix all ingredients together.  Marinate for a few hours.  When you're getting ready to cook them, sprinkle with some salt and pepper.  Grill or bake.  I like to use chicken tenders, because I like the size and easiness of it.  I bake them at 400º for about 20 minutes.  Slice the chicken into thin strips.  Keep warm.

Black Beans
2 cans black beans, rinsed and drained
1 1/3 cup tomato juice
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon ground cumin
2 tablespoons olive oil
 1 1/2 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons fresh chopped cilantro

In a nonstick skillet, cook garlic and cumin in olive oil over medium heat until you can smell it.  Add beans, tomato juice, and salt.  Cook for 10 - 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.  Just before serving stir in the cilantro.

Cilantro Lime Rice
2 cups uncooked rice
2 teaspoons butter
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 teaspoons freshly squeezed lime juice
4 cups water
4 chicken bouillon cubes
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice
4 teaspoons sugar
6 tablespoons fresh chopped cilantro

In a saucepan combine rice, butter, garlic, 2 teaspoons lime juice, water and bouillon cubes.  Bring to a boil.  Cover and cook on low for 20 minutes, or until rice is tender.  Remove from heat.  In a small bowl combine the last 3 ingredients; 2 tablespoons lime juice, sugar and cilantro.  Pour over hot cooked rice and mix in as you fluff the rice.

Pico de Gallo
4 fresh tomatoes, chopped
1 white onion, chopped
1/4 bunch cilantro, chopped
1 - 2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 teaspoon lime juice
1 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper

Combine ingredients together in a medium bowl.

This has become our favorite guacamole!

3 avocados
2 tablespoons red onion, minced
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 bunch cilantro leaves, chopped
1 large ripe garden tomato or 2 smaller tomatoes, diced
juice of 1 lime

Pit avocados and mash in a bowl.  Stir in remaining ingredients until mixed.  (If you like it spicy you can add 1 jalapeno finely chopped and 4-5 shakes green Tabasco sauce)

Tomatillo Dressing
1 package Hidden Valley Ranch Dressing Mix
1 cup buttermilk
1 cup mayonnaise
2 tomatillos, cored
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 bunch cilantro
juice of 1 lime
1/2 jalapeno, seeds removed

Blend ingredients together in a blender.  Add additional mayonnaise if dressing is too thin.  Keep refrigerated.  If it's not spicy enough, add more jalapeno.

Tortilla Strips
6 - 8 corn tortillas
oil for frying

Cut tortillas into strips using a pizza cutter.  Heat oil in a large frying pan.  Place strips into hot oil and fry until they become crispy.  When nice and crispy, removed from oil and place on a paper towel.  Sprinkle with salt after each batch.  These can be made ahead of time and stored in a Ziploc baggie when cooled.
•  You can also bake these in a 400º oven for about 8 minutes!