Thursday, July 14, 2011

Turkey Enchiladas

Here's another one of the recipes I cut out of Taste of Home and have been meaning to try. This dish turned out pretty well, however, the creamy sauce that goes on top of the enchiladas was a little sweet for my tastes. If I were to re-make these, I would definitely add some tomatillos or lime juice to that component to combat the sweetness. Other than that, it was great!

As usual, I adapted for my personal preferences and those adaptations are in parentheses.

On a side note...can I just say that I'm quite distraught about the final Harry Potter film coming out?!?!? I'm a fanatic of the books, and while the films are a tad disappointing when you know the detail and depth of the stories in the novels, there's something final and sad about the LAST movie. It's almost like a true I just have to remind myself that I will always have the books to re-visit and re-read over and over and over and over... You get the point. On to the food.

I served these enchiladas with a spicy southwestern slaw that I got from Cara...what a perfect combo!

Terrific Turkey Enchiladas Recipe
(Once again, not my own pic! All credit to Taste of Home.)

Terrific Turkey Enchiladas


1-1/4 cups frozen corn, thawed
1 can (4 ounces) chopped green chilies
1 cup fresh cilantro leaves
1/3 cup heavy whipping cream (I used fat-free half & half)
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
(If you like a spicier enchilada, I would maybe add some fresh or pickled jalapenos to this sauce.)


3/4 pound ground turkey
1/3 cup chopped onion
1 garlic clove, minced (I used WAY more...I love garlic!)
1 tablespoon olive oil
3/4 cup salsa
1 tablespoon cornmeal
2 teaspoons chili powder
1-1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon pepper
6 flour tortillas (8 inches), warmed (I used whole wheat)
1-1/4 cups shredded Mexican cheese blend, divided (I used 2% shredded cheddar)
1/4 cup sliced ripe olives


Place the first six ingredients in a food processor; cover and pulse until blended.

In a large skillet, cook the turkey, onion and garlic in oil over medium heat until meat is no longer pink. Remove from the heat; stir in the salsa, cornmeal and seasonings.

Spoon 1/3 cup turkey mixture down the center of each tortilla; top with 2 tablespoons cheese. Roll up and place seam side down in a greased 11-in. x 7-in. baking dish. Spoon corn mixture over the top; sprinkle with olives and remaining cheese.

Cover and bake at 350° for 30 minutes. Uncover; bake 5-10 minutes longer or until heated through. Yield: 3 servings.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Cheese Enchiladas and Made-Up Salad

I assume at some point in time I will return to taking my own pictures instead of relying on pictures from other sources. However, if it's available and looks WAY better than what I made, why not???

In trying to keep with my summertime promise to myself of trying new recipes, I made these cheese enchiladas I saw in Taste of Home awhile back. I LOVE cheese enchiladas, but I've never made them myself. I served these with what I call Made-Up Salad, because that's exactly what I did. I just made it up! So while I don't have a picture of it, I will try to include what I remember of how I concocted it.

The verdict on this meal: definitely a repeat! And even better as leftovers!

One note on this, however. The recipe says to make your own sauce, but I'm a fan of the canned enchilada sauce; I love the flavor and the ease! Just open a can and you're ready to go! I made half a recipe of these enchiladas, so I bought 1 28-oz. can of enchilada sauce and had PLENTY leftover.

Cheese Enchiladas Recipe
Photo courtesy Taste of Home

Cheese Enchiladas


2 cans (15 ounces each) tomato sauce
1-1/3 cups water
2 tablespoons chili powder
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
16 flour tortillas (8 inches), warmed (I used whole wheat)
4 cups (16 ounces) shredded Monterey Jack cheese
2-1/2 cups (10 ounces) shredded cheddar cheese, divided (used lowfat)
2 medium onions, finely chopped
1 cup (8 ounces) sour cream (used lowfat)
1/4 cup minced fresh parsley (omitted, accidentally!)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
Shredded lettuce, sliced ripe olives and additional sour cream, optional


In a large saucepan, combine the first six ingredients. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer, uncovered, for 4-5 minutes or until thickened, stirring occasionally. Spoon 2 tablespoons sauce over each tortilla.

In a large bowl, combine the Monterey Jack, 2 cups cheddar cheese, onions, sour cream, parsley, salt and pepper (I added a little extra cumin and chili powder to the cheese mixture for extra depth of flavor). Place about 1/3 cup down the center of each tortilla. Roll up and place seam side down in two greased 13-in. x 9-in. baking dishes. Pour remaining sauce over top.

Bake, uncovered, at 350° for 20 minutes. Sprinkle with remaining cheddar cheese. Bake 4-5 minutes longer or until cheese is melted. Garnish with lettuce, olives and sour cream if desired. Yield: 16 enchiladas.

Made-Up Salad
1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
1 can corn, rinsed and drained
1 poblano pepper, chopped, seeds & ribs removed
1 jalapeno pepper, chopped, seeds & ribs removed
15 baby carrots (approximately), chopped
2 T. fresh cilantro, chopped
1/4 c. canola or olive oil
3 T. red wine vinegar
1/2 t. sugar
1/2 t. cumin
1 t. chili powder
1/2 t. dried oregano
Salt & pepper to taste
Combine first 6 ingredients in a large bowl. Mix remaining ingredients in a liquid measurer until well combined. Pour wet ingredients over vegetables and stir until coated. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes before serving.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Enchilada Lasagna

Summer's here!!!!! One of the things I've decided to do with my new-found plethora of free time is to cook only recipes I've never tried before. So far, it looks like this is going to consist a lot of my collection of Taste of Home recipes I've been wanting to try, and this one was up first.

I adapted it alot from how it was originally printed in the current issue of Taste of Home. Below is the original recipe with my adaptations in parentheses.

We both really loved this dish. Matt is a huge lasagna fan anyway, and I rarely make it, except for his birthday. This lasagna has my favorite Mexican flavors but still the saucy, cheesy, layered goodness of a traditional lasagna.

(Recipe and picture from Taste of Home)
Enchilada Lasagna Recipe 

1-1/2 pounds ground beef (used 93/7 lean ground chicken)
1 medium onion, chopped
1 garlic clove, minced (used 4 :)
1 can (14-1/2 ounces) stewed tomatoes, undrained
1 can (10 ounces) enchilada sauce
1 to 2 teaspoons ground cumin (used 3 t; also added 2 T. chili powder, a sprinkle of red chili flakes, and about 1/2 t. dried oregano to add to the heat factor and Mexican flavors)
1 egg, beaten (used 2 egg whites)
(3 T. chopped fresh cilantro, divided)
1-1/2 cups (12 ounces) 4% cottage cheese (used lowfat)
3 cups (12 ounces) shredded Mexican cheese blend 
8 flour tortillas (8 inches), cut in half (used whole wheat)
1 cup (4 ounces) shredded cheddar cheese
(For the cheeses, I just used 4 c. low-fat cheddar)


In a large skillet, cook the beef, onion and garlic over medium heat until meat is no longer pink; drain. Stir in the tomatoes, enchilada sauce and cumin (I added my other seasonings in here). Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer, uncovered, for 20 minutes.

In a small bowl, combine egg and cottage cheese; set aside (I added salt, pepper, and 2 T. cilantro). Spread a third of the meat sauce into a greased 13-in. x 9-in. baking dish. Layer with half of the cheese blend, tortillas, cottage cheese mixture and remaining meat sauce. Repeat layers. Sprinkle with cheddar cheese.

Cover and bake at 350° for 20 minutes. Uncover; bake 10 minutes longer or until bubbly. Let stand for 15 minutes before cutting. Yield: 12 servings.

(Nutrition facts are calculated based on original recipe ingredients.)
Nutrition Facts: 1 piece equals 387 calories, 21 g fat (11 g saturated fat), 87 mg cholesterol, 771 mg sodium, 25 g carbohydrate, 1 g fiber, 25 g protein.

Monday, May 9, 2011

I'm such a blog loser!

Regardless of however much I intend to write on this stupid blog, I always become neglectful, making my blog the loser that it is. So with summer quickly approaching I have a new and surprising goal...write more!!! Ok, not really surprising, but I really mean it this time. Really!!!

We shall see...

As this school year comes to a close, I'm taking into account all the changes I've gone through since last summer. Matt's job change, my job change, our move away from both our families, adjusting to a new life in a smaller community, making new friendships, learning to work with new types of students, and unfortunately not cooking as much! As I reflect on this past few months, so much good has come from it. We've made some fabulous new friends at the college where Matt works. I've learned that 1) 8th graders are 8th graders no matter what their socio-economic status or family background; 2) a 2 hour and 40 minute drive back "home" really isn't that bad; 3) living in a Lustron home is nothing like living in a metal shed; 4) not having a mortgage is GREAT; and finally 5) change is good.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Pioneer Woman

After watching Throwdown with Bobby Flay last night, I had to look up Ree Drummond.

And I'm so glad I did... Her blog is one to envy, and she writes so well that even a post I'm not interested in is a great read. Needless to say, I'm trying two of her recipes this week. First, tonight is beef enchiladas which will serve as great leftovers for tomorrow's dinner as well. Then Tuesday will be her meatloaf recipe.

I'm sad to report that I still have not located the other part to my camera charger, so there will be none of my own photos to post of these two recipes, so I'll try to borrow some to make this look a little nicer than a plain old photo-less post.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Birthday Lasagna

Every year for Matt's birthday, in addition to whatever present I buy him, I also make him anything he wants for dinner. He always requests lasagna for what I assume are these 2 reasons: 1) it's his favorite, and 2) there's no other time of the year I would actually choose to make it.

I don't know where I got this recipe, but I imagine it's one of those that I kind of created based off of several recipes. Currently the meat sauce is simmering on my stove-top and the water is boiling for the lasagna noodles. I'm posting exactly what I used and the method I used. And thanks to a key component to my camera charger missing, this post will unfortunately be sans pictures. Use your imagination. :)

Birthday Lasagna


1 lb. lean ground turkey
1 medium onion, chopped
4 garlic cloves, chopped
1 28-oz. can whole tomatoes
1 16-oz. can tomato sauce
2 T. balsamic vinegar
2 T. dried parsley
1 t. dried basil
16 oz. 1% cottage cheese
9 whole wheat lasagna noodles
1/4 grated parmesan + more for topping
3-4 c. shredded mozzarella cheese
Salt & Pepper, to taste


Brown turkey in a non-stick skillet over medium-high heat until cooked through. I believe I added a little S&P and some Italian seasoning during this part. Remove turkey from pan and set aside. Add a little oil to the skillet and saute the garlic and onion together with the basil. I think I also added in some red pepper flake during this process because we like our lasagna with a little kick. ;o)

When onion and garlic are becoming transluscent, add the tomatoes and tomato sauce. Stir in the balsamic vinegar and some S&P to taste. Bring sauce up to bubbling then add in the cooked ground turkey. Stir, cover, and reduce heat to low-ish. Simmer for about an hour (or however long you have to let the flavors develop).

Meanwhile, boil a pot of water and cook noodles according to package directions.

In a smallish bowl, combine cottage cheese, dried parsely, 1/4 c. grated parmesan, and some S&P to taste.

To assemble:
Set aside 1/2 c. of sauce mixture. Layer 1/3 sauce, a couple handfuls of mozzarella, 1/3 of the ricotta mixture, and 3 noodles. Repeat layers until all ingredients are used up. Top with reserved sauce and sprinkle with extra mozzarella and parmesan cheese. Bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes. Allow lasagna to stand for 15 minutes before serving.

Will be accompanied by salad and garlic bread tonight. Happy birthday, husband!

Wednesday, August 18, 2010


to school, to posting, to feeling so busy I don't know what to do!

Since our move, my days have been filled with new staff meetings and workshops. Tonight was the first meal I've made at the new house that I felt was post-worthy, even though there were good ones before we left our old house in Topeka. One of which was a great set of recipes I got from Cara that she got from Bonnie, but I believe those are stashed in my recipe box, and I'm too lazy to go get them out. One was an interesting mole, one was a southwestern take on a gratin, and the other was a salad. All very good, but I did a little doctoring. When I feel motivated and have more time, I'll post those and my alterations. I would definitely make them all again!

Tonight was short, sweet and to the point.

Entree was Shrimp with Cilantro Pesto from Melissa D'Arabian, then my own batch of rice w/ chili & lemon juice (because I ran out of lime juice!), and a broccoli slaw with a chili lime dressing from Cara. All three went perfectly together! And it came together so photos because I was hungry and lazy.

Here are the recipes, my edits and alterations are in parentheses.

Shrimp with Cilantro Pesto


1 lime
1 1/2 cups fresh cilantro leaves
2 green onions, chopped
2 tablespoons toasted chopped pecans
1 clove garlic, chopped  (I used more because I love garlic!)
1 teaspoon sugar
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
(I added a little water to thin it out a bit)


3/4 pound raw medium-size shrimp, peeled and deveined (I used frozen cooked & it worked great!)
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
Kosher salt


Pesto: Grate 1 teaspoon zest from the lime and juice the entire lime for about 2 tablespoons of juice. Combine the zest and juice with the cilantro, green onions, chopped pecans, chopped garlic, sugar, vegetable oil, and extra-virgin olive oil in the bowl of a food processor. Pulse the mixture until well-combined, but still slightly chunky. Season the pesto with salt, and pepper, to taste.

Shrimp: In a bowl, toss the shrimp with 1 tablespoon of the pesto. Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Saute the shrimp until just opaque and pink, about 3 minutes. Put a generous spoonful of pesto into a serving bowl. Add the shrimp and toss to coat. Serve the remaining pesto on the side or freeze for another use.
(My method differs quite a bit here: I thawed the shrimp under cold running water, meanwhile heating the pesto & 1 T. of olive oil in a skillet. Once the shrimp were thawed and drained, I added them to the pesto to warm through.)

My Rice:

2 c. instant brown rice
1 3/4 c. water or chicken broth
2 T. olive oil
Seasonings you like (in this case I used chili powder, salt, pepper and a splash of lemon juice)

Heat oil in skillet, add rice and brown gently, stirring frequently. Add seasonings and water and bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover and simmer for 5 minutes. Remove from heat, fluff with a fork, and return lid to pan for 5 more minutes or until water evaporates. Serve under a healthy serving of shrimp & cilantro pesto!

Chili-Lime Broccoli Slaw

1 bag broccoli slaw
about 15 baby carrots
1/4 c. chopped cilantro leaves
1 jalapeno, chopped (ribs & seeds removed for less heat)
2 green onions, chopped
1/2 c. sour cream (I used reduced fat)
1 lime, juiced
1 t. apple cider vinegar
1 t. chili powder
Salt & pepper to taste

Combine all veggies in a large bowl. In a small bowl, mix dressing ingredients. Taste and adjust seasonings to your liking. Combine dressing with veggies and refrigerate for at least an hour before serving.