Cinco de Mayo

Chicken and Bean Nachos with Pico de Gallo

So, there’s this weird thing about Texas. (Take your pick, right?) And it wasn’t something I realized until I was much older. But it has to do with nachos. (That probably wasn’t your first thing that came to your mind.)

During most of high school, we lived on Dad’s Bean & Cheese Nachos – a large baking pan on which chips, salsa, cheese, beans (half whole, half refried), and jalapenos (half with, half with double!) were piled, then baked, then eaten in an all-out messy free-for-all straight from the pan. Those nachos could show up on enchilada night, on any Sunday afternoon during football season, and nearly every weeknight after Mom had gone back to school and Dad was responsible for “cooking” when he got home from work.

And then there was that weird thing I discovered about nachos in Texas. I ordered nachos at a TexMex restaurant and what came to my table was not… well, it wasn’t any nachos I had ever seen.

It was an arranged platter of separate tortilla chips, with each chip individually – annoyingly, pristinely - topped with your standard nacho fixins. The “nachos” were… beautiful. It looked like it came straight out of a magazine. And it was not the messy free-for-all pile of awesome that I thought I had ordered.

It was… dainty.

Chicken and Bean Nachos with Pico de Gallo

It eventually became clear that those individual nacho things were actually a thing. A Texas thing. Everywhere except my parents’ house and any sports stadium ever built. And this Texan? She does not approve of dainty nachos.

HEB Primo Picks

So when my box of H-E-B’s July Primo Picks arrived this month, I spied the perfect fixins for nachos.

We started with the sweet potato-tortilla hybrid chips and layered those with cheese, Barracho Beans (made with Texas-based Shiner and still one of my favorite things ever), spicy Chile Pequin Salsa, and chicken seasoned with an all-purose barbecue rub.

Topped with some pico de gallo and sliced fresh jalapenos (not pickled!) straight out of the oven, every bite was the fabulous, messy, hearty, flavorful free-for-all that nachos were meant to be.

Even in Texas.

Chicken and Bean Nachos with Pico de Gallo

Chicken and Bean Nachos with Pico de Gallo

Sweet potato tortilla chips serve as the base for these easy (and maybe-not-so-Texas-style) chicken & bean nachos.

Ingredients

  • 1 lb chicken breast
  • 1 Tbsp H-E-B Texas-Style BBQ All-Purpose Seasoning Mix
  • 1 bag (12 oz) Central Market Sweet Potato Tortilla Chips
  • 8 oz monterrey jack, shredded
  • 1 can (15 oz) H-E-B Texas-Style Barracho Beans, drained
  • 1/2 cup Central Market Chile Pequin Salsa
  • For the pico de gallo
  • 1 pint grape tomatoes, quartered
  • 1/3 cup chopped red onion
  • 1 small handful cilantro, chopped
  • 2 jalapenos, sliced
  • Juice from 1/2 lime
  • Salt
  • Pepper

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 425.
  2. Pound chicken breasts to even thickness and sprinkle both sides with the BBQ seasoning.
  3. Place on a large sheet of foil and fold the foil pouch-style
  4. Place the pouch on a baking pan and cook for ~20 minutes, until the chicken is cooked through.
  5. Let cool for ~10 minutes and then shred.
  6. Spread the tortilla chips out in an even layer on a large baking pan.
  7. Top with half of the cheese, beans, chicken, the salsa, and remainder of the cheese.
  8. Bake for 10-12 minutes until the cheese has melted.
  9. In the mean time, stir the tomatoes, red onion, lime juice, salt, cilantro, pepper, and jalapenos together in a bowl and set aside.
  10. Top the nachos with the pico and serve immediately. Straight from the pan in a messy free-for-all recommended.

Notes

Yields: 6-8 servings

Source: Confections of a Foodie Bride

Estimated time: 50 minutes

This recipe was developed in conjunction with H-E-B and I was provided ingredients as well as compensated for my time. Messy fingers, stretchy-waisted pants, and opinions are all mine. You can find H-E-B on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest. And if you’re as lucky as we are, 3 locations within a 5 mile radius.

{ 16 comments }

Margarita-glazed Fish Tacos

I get the best dinner ideas when I don’t have the ability to write them down. Like sitting at dinner with a fork in my hand. Or pushing The Little through HEB in one of those soul-killing plastic car-cart monstrosities.

Or playing Candy Crush :oops:

Then 2 nights later, I’m looking at a random collection of ingredients trying to remember what I was supposed to do with them.

That’s why I found myself heavy a pound of white fish and a single orange last week. Since they’re usually for margaritas, I never just buy one orange. It had to be one of those “all I need is X and Y because I have everything else” ideas.

I never did figure it out.

Instead, I whipped up a quick margarita-esque marinade, let the fish sit a bit, and then reduced the marinade down to a boozy, citrusy glaze while the fish cooked and I finished the rest of dinner.

Drizzled over the fish tacos before serving, the glaze really adds a bright punch of flavor to the tacos.

So let this be a lesson: When in Doubt, Margarita.

Margarita-Glazed Fish Tacos

Smokey, grilled fish tacos get a summery, flavorful punch from a margarita glaze.

Ingredients

  • For the fish:
  • 1/4 cup tequila
  • 1 tsp lime zest
  • 1/4 cup lime juice (2-3 limes)
  • 1/4 cup orange juice (1 small orange)
  • 1 lbs white fish (cod, tilapia, etc)
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • 6 small tortillas
  • For the pico de gallo
  • 2 roma tomatoes, seeded and chopped
  • 1/4 cup chopped red onion
  • 1 jalapeno, seeded and chopped
  • Small handful of cilantro, chopped
  • Juice of 1/2 lime
  • Salt

Instructions

  1. Add the tequila, lime juice, zest, orange juice, and fish to a large zip-top bag and let sit for no longer than 30 minutes (less if your fish is delicate; tilapia and cod tend to hold up well).
  2. Heat your grill to medium-high.
  3. Stir together the ingredients for the pico de gallo and set aside.
  4. Grill the fish 4-5 minutes each side, until the center is just opaque.
  5. While the fish is grilling, pour the marinade into a large sauce pan over high heat and bring to a boil, reducing to ~1/4 cup.
  6. Season the fish with salt and pepper and flake into large chunks.
  7. Serve the fish on tortillas topped with pico de gallo and a drizzle of the tequila reduction.

Notes

Yields: 6 servings

Source: Confections of a Foodie Bride

Estimated time: 45 minutes

{ 14 comments }

Tangelo Margarita

It’s probably no surprise to any of you, but when I see a new fruit come in season – or priced low enough that I can’t resist hoarding – the first thing that comes to my mind is:

I have tequila at home, right?

Because, really now – what fruit doesn’t make a good margarita? (Besides kiwi. I’ve pretty much given up wasting tequila on that one.)

But tangelos were on fire-sale again so I decided it was time to officially make this one margarita recipe number Twenty…. 22! And just in time for Cinco de Mayo.

Tangelos are a cross between tangerines & pomelos, both of which have been immortalized in margarita form here already. Taste-wise, they’re far closer to tangerines so that’s the route I took.

Tangelo Margarita

And speaking of the holy Spring holiday that’s coming this weekend, our Taquitos & Tequila pool party is on Sunday! We’re serving:
Brie & Brisket Quesadillas
Creamy Jalapeno Ranch Chicken Taquitos
Guacamole
Pineapple salsa
Classic Lime Margaritas*
Grapefruit Margaritas*
Blue Margaritas*
Guanabana Margaritas*
Dulce de Leche ice cream

*the skinny versions

And guests have claimed some fabulously delicious dishes like queso and jalapeno poppers. So I’m headed off to do work. I have 100 limes to juice. And a floor to mop.

And if I have time, like 3 walls to de-crayon. But if I hand out margaritas when guests walk through the door, I think I can get away with leaving The Little’s art work up, right?

Tangelo Margaritas

A beautiful orange margarita using fresh lime and tangelo juice.

Ingredients

Instructions

  1. Stir margarita mix, tangerine juice, and tequila together in an oversized glass or small pitcher.
  2. Run a lime or tangerine wedge around the outside of 2 glasses and dip in salt.
  3. Fill glasses with ice and pour margaritas over.
  4. Rinse and repeat.

Notes

Yields: 2 servings

Source: Confections of a Foodie Bride

Estimated time: 10 minutes

{ 9 comments }

Beer-Glazed Fish Tacos with Kiwi-Mango Salsa

Dinner tonight was supposed to look a little different. But when it was go-time, I found myself faced with a real sketchy looking mango that I couldn’t remember buying and 3 wrinkly kiwi that I could remember buying because it was the source of The Little’s real public tantrum during the busiest grocery shopping hour of the busiest grocery shopping day.

So the kiwi, I bought. And the kiwi, she did not eat. Because they’re “real spicy.”

The person who coined the phrase “The Terrible Twos” most certainly didn’t survive one of those epic public meltdowns to realize that the Threes are worse than the Twos.

Way worse.

And at the end of the day, I just really wanted a real beer and a real fish taco. With a real tortilla. So one, I had. In the form of beer-glazed fish tacos topped with a kiwi-mango salsa.

The beer glaze was simple – I marinated the fish in a brew from of my favorite local guys: No Label Brewery‘s Don Jalapeno Ale.

Don Jalapeno is brewed with – wait for it – jalapenos. You get good muted char/roasty flavors from the roasted jalapenos and just a little heat on the back end from the fresh peppers. It’s one of those beers that’s awesome for a flight, to share, and to cook/bake with… but I find it a leetle difficult to finish the entire bottle on my own.

And that’s why I got married. No unfinished beer left behind.

I reduced the marinade to concentrate the flavors, drizzling the glaze over the tacos before eating. And Mother of Saint Arnold, was it fantastic.

Beer-Glazed Fish Tacos with Kiwi-Mango Salsa

Grilled cod tacos are topped with kiwi-mango salsa and a beer glaze.

Ingredients

  • For the marinade:
  • 1/2 cup beer (go for something middle of the road, not light or overly bitter)
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • Juice of 1/2 small orange
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 lb cod or other white fish
  • For the salsa:
  • 2 kiwi, peeled and diced
  • 1 mango, peeled and diced
  • 1/4 cup diced red onion
  • 1 jalapeno, diced (and seeded, if desired)
  • Small handful of cilantro, chopped
  • For serving
  • 4-6 Small flour tortillas

Instructions

  1. Heat grill to medium-high.
  2. Place marinade ingredients in a large zippered bag, add fish, and let sit in the fridge for 20-30 minutes.
  3. Combine the salsa ingredients in a bowl and set aside.
  4. Put the marinade in a medium sauce pan or pot over high heat, bring to a boil, and let reduce to ~1/4 cup.
  5. Grill the fish ~4-5 minutes per side, until it's opaque in the center and flakes easily.
  6. To serve, top tortillas with flaked fish, a scoop of salsa, and a drizzle of the beer reduction.

Notes

Yields: 4-6 servings

Source: Confections of a Foodie Bride

Estimated time: 45 minutes

{ 17 comments }