Veggies & Starches

Cheesy Chipotle Chicken and Rice Casserole

There’s also some broccoli in there, too. All the food groups represent: cheese, carbs, leftover protein, and green stuff. If that doesn’t scream balance, then I do not know if there’s help for you.

Cheesy Chipotle Chicken and Rice Casserole

With the coldest night since April on tap for us tonight – 44F, BRRRRR! – I wanted something warm and not-chili for dinner. I took the house – and Thanksgiving favorite – Cheesy Broccoli and Quinoa Casserole and grabbed a can of chipotles and that leftover shredded chicken in the fridge that needed to be eaten, like, yesterday.

Cheesy Chipotle Chicken and Rice Casserole

It’s still all the things you love about the traditional broccoli, cheese, and rice casserole: one baking dish, cheesy, gooey, not-very-pretty comfort food. But this version, it gets a little added kick from stirring a few tablespoons of minced chipotle peppers in adobo sauce into the cheese sauce.

Cheesy Chipotle Chicken and Rice Casserole

It’s a little spicy. It’s still super cheesy. And insanely comforting.

Cheesy Chipotle Chicken and Rice Casserole

The cheesy comfort food favorite gets a spicy kick from chipotle peppers.

Ingredients

  • 1.5 cups uncooked white rice (or enough to yield 3 cups cooked, check your package instructions)
  • 16 oz frozen chopped broccoli
  • 3 Tbsp butter
  • 3 Tbsp all-purpose flour
  • 1 small yellow onion, diced
  • 2 cups milk
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3 Tbsp minced chipotles in adobo sauce*
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 8 oz. sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
  • 1 1/2 cups leftover shredded chicken
  • *I put the entire can into a mini-chopper and mince and then save the leftovers in the fridge. Or freezer.

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 400.
  2. In a medium sauce pan, cook the rice in water with a generous pinch of salt, according to package, directions and then set aside.
  3. In a large pot over medium heat, melt the butter.
  4. Whisk in the flour, onion, garlic, 2-3 tablespoons of minced chipotles (if you're sensitive to heat, start with 2), a generous pinch of salt and black pepper.
  5. Let cook 1-2 minutes and then slowly add the milk, whisking until the sauce is smooth.
  6. Let the sauce simmer, reducing the heat if necessary, about 5 minutes until thickened and bubbling.
  7. Remove from heat, whisk in the cheddar a handful at a time until completely melted.
  8. Taste for spice/seasoning and add additional chipotles, salt, and pepper to taste.
  9. Add broccoli, rice, and chicken to the pot and mix well.
  10. Transfer mixture to a casserole dish and bake ~35 minutes, until the top is nicely browned.

Notes

Yields: 8-12 servings

Adapted from Cheesy Broccoli Quinoa

Estimated time: 1 hour

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Hatch Chile Borracho Beans

The onset of hatch chile season means that the pot of beans I make for the 2-3 TexMex nights that are always on the menu get a green chile makeover.

Hatch Chile Borracho Beans

Where I come from, you usually have three options for beans on taco night: refried beans, charro beans, and borracho beans.

Refried beans are easy, especially when your two-ingredient recipe calls for a can opener and a can. Charro beans take a little bit of planning and a whole lot of bacon.

Borracho beans? They also need a little bit of planning. But most of all? They need beer.

Hatch Chile Borracho Beans

In addition to being spiked with beer, these beans are also spiked with green chile salsa verde and a hatch chile pico de gallo.

Hatch Chile Borracho Beans

Here in Texas, Shiner has always been the popular choice for borracho beans. There are very few rules, but there is one thing to remember: Pick out an amber-or-darker brew from your fridge because, just like in all other aspects of real life, light beer won’t do much for you.

Hatch Chile Borracho Beans

Your favorite taco night side infused with green chiles and beer.

Ingredients

  • For the beans:
  • 1 lb dry pinto beans, rinsed and soaked*
  • 12 oz beer (medium/amber is best; I used a locally brewed jalapeno ale this time)
  • 2 Tbsp brown sugar
  • 1/2 small red onion
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tsp salt
  • Black pepper
  • 1 tsp chile powder (I used a New Mexican blend)
  • 1/2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/2 cup green chile salsa verde
  • For the hatch chile pico de gallo:
  • 3 large roma tomatoes, seeded and diced
  • 1/2 small red onion, diced
  • 2 hatch chiles roasted, seeded, and chopped*
  • Juice of 1/2 lime
  • Small handful of cilantro, chopped
  • *Either soak overnight or do the quick-soak method: bring beans to a boil, turn off heat, and let stand 1 hour; drain and proceed with recipe.

Instructions

  1. Place the pre-soaked beans, beer, brown sugar, onion, garlic, salt, pepper, chile powder, cumin, and salsa verde in a large pot.
  2. Cover with 3-4 inches of water and bring to a boil.
  3. Reduce heat to a simmer and cook with the lid ajar for ~90 minutes, until the beans are tender.
  4. Mix the ingredients for the pico de gallo and add half of the mixture to the beans.
  5. Cover and let stand for 15 minutes; stir and adjust seasoning as desired.
  6. Serve beans garnished with the remaining pico de gallo.

Notes

Yields: 8-10 servings

Source: Confections of a Foodie Bride

Estimated time: 3 hours

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If you’ve spent any time poking around the blog at any point over the last 8 (!) years in late summer, you know you can guarantee three things:
1) Somewhere, I’m bitching about the oppressive Texas heat and humidity.
2) I’m hoarding stocking up on hatch chiles.
3) I’m planning my next margarita, usually with the current margarita in hand.

Never change, Shawnda.

So while your grocery store is boasting $.67/lb fresh hatch chiles, make sure you get in on the action. You need no special equipment – a pan, some foil, an oven, and something to protect your hands.

My seafood counter guy will gladly hand over a free pair of the food-service gloves that they use behind the counter. But when I forget to ask, or assume I had an extra pair when I actually didn’t, I can MacGyver some freezer bags and rubber bands into a clunky – but effective, considering the alternative – substitute.

Hatch Green Chile & Chicken Enchiladas

Once your peppers are roasted, put them on anything and everything that doesn’t move. But I’m getting just a little ahead of myself so let’s get started.

How to Roast Hatch Green Chiles

How to Roast Hatch Green Chiles, step by step.

Ingredients

  • Hatch chiles (any pepper, really)
  • Large baking pan
  • 2 lengths of foil, slightly longer than your baking pan
  • Gloves/Protection for your hands when peeling the cooled peppers (see above)
  • Sandwich- or snack-sized baggies

Instructions

  1. Turn on broiler and put your oven rack in the top 1/4th of the oven.
  2. Line a large baking pan with one sheet of foil.
  3. Place washed chiles on the pan in a single layer.
  4. Roast under the broiler for 6-8 minutes, until blistered.
  5. Flip, repeat (the second side usually takes less time).
  6. Make the pepper is mostly blistered (larger sections of unblistered pepper will be hard to peel).
  7. Remove from the oven, condense the peppers into the center of the pan and cover with the second sheet of foil (it won't be air-tight but it will hold the steam and heat in that makes it possible to peel the peppers easily).
  8. Allow peppers to cool to room temp.
  9. Peel each pepper, remove the stem, and slice open.
  10. Use your knife to scrape out the seeds.
  11. Dice peppers, transfer to a bowl for use within 7 days, and then proceed to put peppers in and on everything that doesn't move.
  12. For longer storage, place in freezer bags (I use 1 cup portions) and freeze.

Notes

Yields: Servings vary

Source: Confections of a Foodie Bride

Estimated time: 35 minutes

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Avocado and Grilled Pineapple Eggrolls

Before we start talking about the insanity of what almost amounts to deep-fried guacamole, let’s talk about safety.

Because there are some things you shouldn’t do on a school night. Like drinking most of a bottle of wine all by yourself.

And then come the things that you shouldn’t do after drinking most of a bottle of wine yourself on a school night. Like getting anywhere near an open flame and hot, splattering oil.

But there is one thing that you should totally do with hot, splattering oil when you have all of your fine motor skills about you so you probably won’t burn yourself 4 times in 10 minutes (how am I even still alive?): Make these Grilled Pineapple & Avocado Eggrolls.

Avocado and Grilled Pineapple Eggrolls

Several years back, I made a clone of the Cheesecake Factory Eggroll recipe. It was… work. There was cream cheese and sundried tomatoes in the filling with the avocado and I’ve always found that kind of an odd combo. Although I will totally dominate a plate without complaint and call it dinner once a year.

And then the sauce had a couple new-to-me ingredients that were pricey and ended up going to waste because what else was I supposed to do with the rest of a $12 jar of tamarind paste? You know, besides not buy it in the first place.

But the one thing that recipe did get right? Wrapping chunky avocado in a thin, crispy fried shell. It’s basically fried guacamole. And it’s not at all hard to accomplish.

Avocado and Grilled Pineapple Eggrolls

I basically made an extra chunky version of my very favorite guacamole, which is loaded with sweet and smokey cubes of grilled pineapple, wrapped that up in an eggroll wrapper, and fried for ~1 minute on each side. The dipping sauce was a crudely-measured, raid-the-pantry combination of soy sauce, honey, garlic, red pepper, and cilantro. Sweet, salty, savory, and slightly spicy all in a single bite.

And my poor burned fingertips (WHY DIDN’T I USE TONGS) have nearly completely healed.

Grilled Pineapple and Avocado Eggrolls

Avocado and juicy grilled pineapple are served inside crispy eggrolls.

Ingredients

  • For the eggrolls:
  • Oil for cooking (enough to be ~1-inch deep in your pan)
  • 4 small avocados, diced
  • 2 rings grilled pineapple, diced*
  • 1/2 cup chopped red onion
  • 1 jalapeno pepper, diced
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • Salt
  • 1 pkg (16 count) eggroll wrappers
  • Small bowl of water
  • For the sauce:
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 2 Tbsp orange juice
  • 2 Tbsp honey
  • Generous pinch of red pepper flakes
  • 1 minced clove garlic
  • 1 Tbsp minced cilantro

Instructions

  1. *If you aren't working with leftover pineapple, remove the husk, slice into ~1/2-inch thick rings, and place on a preheated grill.
  2. Cook ~4-5 minutes each side until nicely caramelized.
  3. Pour cooking oil into a pan and heat over medium high.
  4. In a large bowl, toss the avocado, pineapple. salt, lime juice, red onion, and pepper together.
  5. Lay a single wrapper on your work surface, dip your fingers in the water, and lightly moisten all four the edges of the wrapper.
  6. Place ~3 Tbsp of filling onto your eggroll wrapper and roll (I didn't get photos buy you can see the step by step here.
  7. Working with 3-4 eggrolls at a time, place them in the heated oil (it should sizzle with a drop of water) and fry ~1 minutes each side, until golden brown.
  8. Remove to a paper-towel lined plate and serve hot.
  9. To make the dipping sauce, whisk all ingredients together.

Notes

Yields: 16 servings

Source: Confections of a Foodie Bride

Estimated time: 40 minutes

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