Mexican Smothered Chicken Thighs with Spanish Rice

Dillon’s had a nice sale on Chicken Thighs recently.  Usually we grill any “on the bone” chicken I buy, but let’s be realistic, it’s NOT really grill season! BRRR! (By the way, that is a “He-We”. I do not grill, that is a Dale-only job.)  What?  You’ve never heard of a He-we before?  Hmm, well, an example of a “She-We” would be: We need to bake those pies today. Get it?  That’s a job I would typically do alone, even though I said “we”. 

Except when Dale and I talk to each we tease: “Is that a YOU-we or a ME-we?” 

  Anywho, I came across this chicken recipe in one of the many recipe magazines that reside in my home and I had to give her a go.  This photo is SUPER ugly, but trust me, the meal was SUPER delish!  For those who are anti-meat with bone, don’t worry, the chicken falls right off the bone, it is so tender. Plus, think how much money you will save your family by being brave and getting this “budget” kind of chicken!  Bone-in is typically cheaper, sale or no.

Mexican Smothered Chicken Thighs with Spanish Rice

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  • 2 cups Flour
  • 2 Tablespoons Season Salt
  • 2 teaspoons Salt
  • 2 teaspoons Pepper
  • 1-½ cup Milk
  • 10 whole Bone In Chicken Thighs, Skin Removed
  • Olive Oil For Pan Searing
  • 1 whole Onion, Chopped
  • 2 whole Jalapeno Peppers (seeded And Chopped)
  • 16 ounces, fluid Tomato Sauce
  • 1 cup Water
  • ½ teaspoons Chili Powder
  • 2 teaspoons Garlic Powder
  • 2 teaspoons Cumin

Remove skin from chicken. In a bowl, combine flour and seasonings. Pour milk in a separate, shallow bowl. Press chicken into first flour mixture, then milk, then flour mixture again. Set aside. Heat up several tablespoons of olive oil in a large skillet and pan sear each chicken thigh until flour is starting to turn golden brown. Transfer to a sprayed 9 x 13 casserole dish.
In the same skillet, sautee onion and jalapenos until tender. Add tomato sauce, water and spices. Bring to a boil then reduce heat and simmer, uncovered for 5 minutes or until thickened. Pour over chicken.
COVER and bake at 350* for 35 minutes or until chicken juices run clear.
Serve chicken and sauce over Mexican rice.

Ole’!

~T

Be sure to head over to Post 2 for today to see our photos from Christmas! 🙂

Mexican Dip Dinner

Dip for DINNER?!  Yup! And boy were my kids excited about this one.

Mexican Dip Dinner

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Ingredients

  • 2 pounds Ground Beef
  • 1 whole Medium Onion, Chopped
  • 6 cups Liquid (use Drained Tomato Juice Then Water Or Chicken Broth)
  • 1 cup Uncooked Brown Rice
  • 2 teaspoons Chili Powder
  • 2 teaspoons Salt
  • 4 cloves Garlic, Pressed
  • 15 ounces, fluid Tomato Sauce
  • 15 oz. diced tomatoes, drained. Save juice!
  • 2 cans (6 Oz Each) Tomato Paste
  • 15 ounces, weight Can Of Pinto Beans, Rinsed And Drained

In a large pot, brown the beef with onion and garlic. Cook until the meat is no longer pink and the onions are translucent. Drain grease. Add water, rice, *seasonings, tomato sauce, tomato paste and beans. Bring the mixture to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer UNCOVERED for 60-70 minutes.(less if using white rice) Stir occasionally to prevent rice from sticking to the bottom of the pot. The mixture will seem very watery at first, but after simmering, it will thicken to perfection as the rice absorbs and all the ingredients meld together.
Serve warm with tortillas chips for dipping and other taco garnishes of your choice, as well as Gringo Queso Dip (recipe below).
YUM!
This dish freezes well.

*Another option would be to skip the seasonings and do a Taco Seasoning Packet instead, I’m planning to try this next time around!

Gringo Queso Dip

Recipe from Tasty Kitchen.

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  • 1 block Velveeta Pepper Jack Cheese (16oz)
  • 1-½ cup Whole Milk
  • 1 cup Prepared Pico De Gallo
  • ¼ cups Parmesan Cheese
  • 9 ounces, weight Frozen Creamed Spinach, Chopped
  • ¼ teaspoons Cayenne Pepper (more Or Less, Depending On Preference)

Cube the Velveeta into crock pot set on low until fully melted. Then stir in milk, (only a bit at a time, you may not use it all, ours got too runny!) pico de gallo, parmesan, spinach, and cayenne. Cook another hour or until creamy and heated through. Serve with tortilla chips.

Enjoy!

DIP, it’s what’s for dinner!

Y-U-M!

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~T

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Baked Chicken Taquitos w/Creamy Lime-Cilantro Sauce

  You are gonna want to try this one, oh my goodness…we loved this!  I am a dipper though, so I was smitten from the get-go!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  Baked Chicken Taquitos
with Creamy Lime-Cilantro Sauce

from Brandy’s Baking

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  • FOR THE TAQUITOS:
  • 4 ounces, weight Cream Cheese
  • ½ cups Green Salsa Called Salsa Verde
  • 1 Tablespoon Lime Juice
  • ½ teaspoons Cumin
  • ½ teaspoons Chili Powder
  • ½ teaspoons Onion Powder
  • ½ teaspoons Garlic Powder
  • 3 Tablespoons Chopped Cilantro
  • ½ cups Sliced Green Onions
  • 2 cups Mexican Cheese
  • 2 cups Shredded, Cooked Chicken
  • 12 whole Wheat Tortillas
  • Kosher Salt
  • Cooking Spray
  • FOR THE SAUCE:
  • 1 ounce, weight Packet Hidden Valley Ranch Dressing Mix (do Not Follow Directions On Packet)
  • 1 cup Mayonnaise
  • 1 whole Lime, Juiced
  • 2 cloves Garlic, Pressed
  • ½ cups Chopped Cilantro
  • ¼ cups Green Salsa (Salsa Verde)

Heat oven to 425*.  To make sauce: combine Ranch packet with mayo, lime, garlic, cilantro and green salsa. Refrigerate until supper time.

  Heat cream cheese so it’s soft and easy to stir. Add green salsa, lime juice, cumin, chili powder, onion powder and garlic powder. Stir to combine and then add cilantro and green onions. Add chicken and cheese and combine well. (You can prepare up to this step ahead of time. Just keep the mixture in the fridge until supper prep.)

  Spoon 2-3 Tbsp of chicken mixture on the lower third of a tortilla, keeping it about 1/2 inch from the edges, then roll it up as tight as you can. I was able to get 12 taquitos from this.

  Place seam side down on the baking sheet, making sure to not touch another taquito. Spray the tops lightly with cooking spray and sprinkle some kosher salt on top.

Place pan in oven and bake for 15-20 minutes or until crisp and the ends start to get golden brown.

Serve with the oh-so AMAZING Creamy Lime Cilantro Sauce. YUM!

~T

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Bajio Chile Chicken Wraps

My easiest “Go To” supper is the Taco chicken you do in the crock pot:

6 frozen chicken breasts
3/4 cup water
1 packet of taco seasoning 

Cook on low 5 hours, shred chicken and cook on high lid off until liquid is absorbed. Serve on nachos, quesadillas, burritos, tacos, in a mexican casserole…you name it! 

  I thought these Bajio Chile Chicken Wraps sounded  like a fun change from that one, plus I was intrigued at the use of soda in it!  Check it out!!  009

  BTW, we added roasted corn and sautéed red peppers to this dish and really vamped up the flavor!  I highly recommend it!

BAJIO CHILE CHICKEN WRAPS

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  • 4 whole Large Boneless, Skinless Chicken Breasts
  • ½ cups Salsa
  • ½ cups Brown Sugar (we’ll Do Less Next Time, Plenty Sweet)
  • 4 ounces, weight Can Green Chiles
  • ½ can Of Sprite Or 7Up
  • Fixin’s Of Your Choice: Roasted Corn, Peppers, Tomatoes, Black Beans, Mexican Rice, Guacamole, Pico, Salsa

Combine all ingredients in a crock pot. Cook on low for 5-6 hours. Shred chicken with 2 forks, allow to cook 1 more hour. Juices should cook into the meat, but if they don’t, thicken with a little cornstarch mixed in water.

Here is how we did the roasted corn and red peppers, so simple but changes the flavor SO much:

Drain a can of corn, thinly slice some red pepper and saute them in olive oil until golden brown…Season with kosher salt.  

We served this on whole wheat tortillas with lettuce, cheese, the above mentioned roasted corn & red peppers, cilantro, guacamole, and southwest sour cream.  You really can add whatever you want!
If you want it spicier rather than sweeter add a hotter salsa and more green chilies.
 Easy peasy!  On to Brownies.  Well, Brownie POINTS that is…..

Look what the dashing Mr. Ferguson just brought in from out back. 

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What a sweetie pie!

Mmm, did someone say pie?!

~T

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Made It On Monday

 

Southwest Cream Cheese Stuffed Red Peppers

  I don’t know about you, but my garden is NOT doing well this year.

Sad tomato plants:

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Even more sad green bean plants:

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  We are barely getting any tomatoes and got only 1 batch of green beans before the plants fried in the hot sun. 

  It was 112* almost everyday we were gone to Florida and with Kansas being behind 10 inches of rain, things are very brown and dead here.  😦  Praise the Lord we did get some rain recently, but not before farmers lost cattle and crops.  In comparison, this seems minor, but I’m still mourning the loss of Blackberry cobbler and a freezer full of blackberries to get us through the winter….all our blackberries shriveled up before plumping up for the first time in 9 years.  Yes, it was THAT hot!

  Right now we are getting carrots, red peppers and jalapenos from the garden, for those we are thankful! 

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We love to grill out jalapeno poppers.  Just halve and seed the jalapenos, fill with seasoned cream cheese (we like to use Southwest Seasoning), wrap in bacon, secure with toothpick and grill.  DEEELICIOUS!  What do you mean do I have a photo?  Noooo, that would’ve required me to think before Dale and I gobbled them all up pigishly.

{Oink oink}

  With our Red Peppers I made this for supper:

Southwest Cream Cheese Stuffed Red Peppers049

  • 2 Tablespoons Southwest Seasoning (from Pampered Chef, it’s AMAZING! But you can use cumin, chili powder…anything you deem Mexican flavors, instead.)
  • 4 ounces, weight Spreadable Cream Cheese (I Believe Its Called Whipped And Is Found In The Bagel Section)
  • 8 whole Large Red Peppers
  • 2 cups Cooked Meat Of Your Choice: Shredded Pork, Taco Meat, Or Shredded Chicken.
  • 2 cups Shredded Cheese, More Or Less As Desired
  • Optional Garnishes: Sour Cream, Guacamole
  • FOR THE MEXICAN RICE:
  • 1 cup Uncooked Brown Rice
  • 2 Tablespoons Cooking Oil
  • 1 whole Small Onion Chopped
  • 1 whole Garlic Clove, Pressed
  • ½ teaspoons Salt
  • 2 whole Large Tomatoes, Chopped
  • 2 cups Chicken Broth

Preparation Instructions

First, make your Southwest Cream Cheese by adding 2 tablespoons of Southwest seasoning (or cumin, garlic and chili powder) to 4 ounces of spreadable cream cheese. Refrigerate until ready to make supper, pulling it out of the refrigerator 20 minutes ahead of time to soften up a bit.

Make Mexican rice: In a large skillet over medium heat, saute rice in hot oil until slightly browned. Add the onion, garlic and salt. Cook over low heat until onion is tender. Add tomatoes, cook over medium heat until softened. Add broth; cover and simmer until water is absorbed.

Cut each red pepper in half vertically (from the stem straight down). Remove seeds and pop off the green top. Place in a large pot of salted water, bring to a boil and allow peppers to cook for 5-7 minutes or until starting to soften. Then remove them from the water, drain and cool.

Meanwhile, prepare meat of your choice or grab whatever is leftover in the fridge.

Spread each pepper with 1 Tablespoon (or more to taste) of seasoned cream cheese. Add shredded meat, Mexican rice and top with cheese, filling pepper just to the brim.

Place peppers on a baking sheet and bake at 350F for 15 minutes or until cheese is melted.

Serve hot with sour cream or guacamole on top.

This is SO versatile!  You could use black beans, corn, cilantro, anything you deem “Mexican-ish” in this. Don’t have time to make Mexican rice? Then get one of those Knorr packets of Mexican rice for even faster prep time.

They were delicious, and despite my children’s first reaction: “But I don’t like red peppers!”, they ate them and even asked for seconds.

This is PRECISELY why “No Thank You Bites” are required at our house!

So, how does your garden grow?

~T

Sweet Pulled Pork Tacos with Avocado Cream Sauce

Sweet Pulled Pork Tacos with Avocado Cream Sauce

Recipe adapted from Laughter and Latte’s

Original Recipe Credit: The Meal Planner

If you like the fresh taste of cilantro, this is the dinner for you! Fresh, easy and oh-so delicious!

Ingredients

Sweet Pulled Pork:

  • 3 pounds Pork Shoulder Roast (or Loin Roast Is Fine, Just Pricer)
  • 2 cups Of Your Favorite Salsa (you Decide The Heat)
  • 4 ounces, weight Canned Green Chilies
  • ¼ cups Packed Brown Sugar
  • 15 ounces, weight Black Beans, Rinsed And Drained

Avocado Cream Sauce:

  • 4 whole Green Onions, Sliced
  • 2 whole Avocados
  • 2 Tablespoons Sour Cream
  • 4 Tablespoons Lime Juice
  • ¼ cups Snipped Cilantro
  • 4 cloves Minced Garlic
  • 1 teaspoon Kosher Salt

TOPPINGS:

  • Shredded Lettuce
  • 4 whole Green Onions, Sliced
  • Stand And Stuff Taco Shells

Preparation Instructions

In the bottom of a large crock pot, mix salsa, green chilies, brown sugar and black beans. Add the pork roasted (salted with Kosher salt) and cook on low for 6-8 ours or high for 4-6. Take the meat out of the crockpot and shred with 2 forks. Return to pot and mix with sauce and beans. Leave lid off as you continue making supper to cook away some of the juices.
To make the avocado cream sauce, slice green onions, mash 2 avocado, add lime, sour cream, snipped cilantro, garlic and salt.
To serve:
Scoop sweet pork into baked hard shell. Top with a dollop of avocado cream sauce and shredded lettuce and green onions.
Serve with cherry tomatoes on the side.
Dig in to these fresh, easy, DELICIOUS tacos! YUM!004

*My only complaint was that if I made 2 tacos at the same time, my second got the shell soggy while it waited. Just an FYI, not a deal breaker!

Your gonna want to make this one!!!!!

~T

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Gooseberry Patch Recipe Round Up

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Tasty Tuesday

Wonka Wednesday

This Chick Cooks

Miz Helen’s Country Cottage

Pillow Wars & Mexican Chicken Salad w/Chili Lime Dressing

  Dale and the kids were having pillow fights the other night before bed.  Isn’t it just like a daddy to come up with a totally wild, loud game right before bed?  Oh well, they were having fun!  I was watching them play around and I totally flashed back to when Chad and I were kids, and we played this great game called “Stick Your Head and Arms in Your Pillow And Crash Into Each Other”. 

Ok, maybe that wasn’t the name of it, but that’s what we used to do.

  So, I shared my ingenious idea with my children who responded with “YEAH!” And “Cool!”  

  These photos aren’t great, but you’ll get the general idea of what occurred.

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A Couple of Notes: 

1)  Avery’s pillow covers her entire body. hee hee Smile 

2)  Destiny’s pillow is NOT far enough down, she kept cheating and using her arms.  NO ARMS ALLOWED!

3)  Obviously the fluffy side of the pillow should be in front of the face, not behind, before you crash into your sibling. Ouch.  And obviously, be careful so that your children can breathe. 

Thank you, this has been a service announcement……

Let the games begin!

Destiny cheating again…..

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She takes down Avery in a single swipe. Poor Avery crumples to the floor in shock and horror at such a game and declares she is NOT playing anymore!

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Ok, restart…..NO ARMS!  Line up, and…..GO!

“RUNNNNNN!”  

{Crash} 

Giggling ensues…..

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Dale decides they need some “assistance”…..012

Sometimes Daddy’s forgot their own strength……

“Let me help you, Destiny!”  {SHOVE}

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CRASH!!!!!!!  (This is the sound of Tylan falling backwards on his head.)

“WAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAH! My head!”

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“Sorry, buddy!”  Daddy makes it all better with an ice pack.  It’s BEDTIME!

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  Ok, on to the salad portion of this post:

This is a FANTASTIC Mexican salad with a killer homemade Chili Lime dressing and colorful pico de gallo that will make you say “Mmmmm” with each and EVERY bite. 

Oh my stinkin’ word, #1 best salad EVERRRRRR!!!!!

  Now, it looks like a lot of ingredients, but don’t be alarmed, it comes together easily and you can do everything in advance if that helps!  Trust me, it is WORTH it!  Did I already say, MMMMMMMMMMM?

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Mexican Chicken Salad with Chili Lime Dressing

  • FOR THE CHILI-LIME DRESSING:
  • 2 Tablespoons Fresh Lime Juice (about 2 Small Limes)
  • 1 teaspoon Grated Lime Zest
  • 1 teaspoon Chopped Garlic
  • ½ teaspoons Chili Powder
  • ½ teaspoons Salt
  • ¼ teaspoons Ground Pepper
  • ¼ teaspoons Cumin
  • ⅓ cups Olive Oil
  • _____
  • FOR THE PICO DE GALLO:050
  • 1 whole Red Pepper, Diced
  • 1 whole Yellow Pepper, Diced
  • ½ whole Red Onion, Diced
  • ⅓ cups Fresh Cilantro, Snipped
  • 1 can Corn, Drained (15 Ounce Can)
  • 1 can Black Beans, Drained And Rinsed (15 Ounce Can)
  • 1 whole Large Tomato, Diced
  • _____
  • FOR THE SALAD:
  • 8 cups Mixed Greens Of Your Choice
  • 4 whole Grilled Seasoned Chicken Breasts, Cubed
  • 1 whole Hass Avocado, Mashed
  • 1 Tablespoon Lime Juice
  • Mexican Cheese To Taste
  • Your Favorite Ranch Dressing
  • Crunchy Tortilla Strips (found Them By The Croutons)

Preparation Instructions

Combine all of the dressing ingredients and mix well.

048Combine all of the pico de gallo ingredients and mix well.

To assemble salad: place mixed greens on each plate, add a generous helping of pico, some grilled chicken cubes and cheese. Add a dollop of mashed avocado (mix the avocado with the lime juice and some salt, to taste) to the top of each salad.

Drizzle with mostly ranch dressing and a small amount of the lime dressing. Top with tortilla strips.

Enjoy! Its SO delicious I betcha you’ll say MMMMM with every bite too!

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Ole’!  And Happy Monday!

~T  🙂

This post linked to Lark’s Country Heart.

And Angie’s Big Love of Food.

And EVERYDAY SISTERS.

Tasty Tuesday.

This Chick Cooks

Miz Helen’s Country Cottage

 

Smothered Mexican Chicken Roll ups, Baked Brown Spanish Rice & Butterfinger Cake

  It’s not very often I try to tackle 3 new recipes all in one meal, and it’s REALLY rare for us to love all 3 of them!!!!  But it happened!

  So, without further ado, I give you the Mexican supper of your dreams……Ole’!  And yum!  🙂

Smothered Mexican Chicken Roll Ups

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  • 12 Chicken strips, pounded thin
  • 4 ounces Cream Cheese, softened
  • 16 oz. Salsa Verde (Green salsa made with tomatillas), divided
  • 1/2 bunch Cilantro, snipped
  • 1 teaspoon Cumin
  • ½ teaspoons Garlic Powder
  • 3 ounces Fresh Spinach
  • 3 ounces Pepper Jack Cheese, Shredded
  • 6 ounces shredded Mexican cheese
  • 6 ounces Tortilla Chips, Crushed

Flatten out the chicken to about 1/4″ thickness.

001Blend together the cream cheese, half the salsa, cilantro, cumin and garlic powder to form a sauce.

Spread sauce across each breast. 002

Top with both cheeses and a single layer of spinach.

004

Roll closed and place in a 9×13 baking dish, seam side down.  Repeat until all 12 chicken roll ups are in place.  Pour remaining half jar of Salsa verde over the chicken and cover in crushed tortilla chips.

Bake at 350ºF covered for 1 hour or until chicken is cooked through.

  YUM!

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Baked Brown Spanish Rice

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2 1/4 cups brown basamati rice

2 cans chicken broth

1 can rotel tomatoes with chilies, drained (you decide how hot you want, we did original)

1 tsp. chili powder (less if you don’t like heat)

1 tsp. cumin

Preheat oven to 350*.  Combine all ingredients in a 2 Qt. oven safe baking dish.  Stir well.  Cover with foil and bake for 80 minutes until the liquid is absorbed and the rice is tender.  Let sit for 10 minutes out of the oven.  Salt and pepper to taste.  Fluff with a fork and serve with Smothered Chicken Roll Ups.

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Time for dessert!  You have probably heard of Health Bar Cake that uses German chocolate cake mix, gooey stuff and of course, crushed Heath bars.  Mmmm, one of our favorites!  This is the Butterfinger version, just as yummy and so easy too!

Butterfinger Cake

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Yellow, white or french vanilla cake mix

1 can sweetened condensed milk

1 jar caramel topping

4 whole Butterfinger candy bars

Small cool whip

Bake the cake mix according to the package direction.  While hot, poke holes all over the cake.  Pour can of sweetened condensed milk and caramel over hot cake.  Crush up 3 Butterfingers and spread on top of gooey layer.  Allow to cool and refrigerate.  Once cooled completely, top with cool whip and last Butterfinger, crushed.  Serve cold. 

Eat within 3 days as it gets soggy otherwise!

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  I still can’t believe we were 3 for 3 with new recipe “Keepers”! My odds aren’t usually that good.

Try ‘em and let me know what your family thinks……..

Happy Cooking & Baking!

~T