Sunday, August 28, 2011

Enchilada Lasagna

When I share recipes, I typically go through a fairly in depth process.  I first have to decide what I want to make, cook it, take pictures, write the recipe down so I don't forget what in the heck I did.  Then of course take more pictures.  Rarely do I just blog what I made for a last minute dinner.  But this creation turned out so tasty, I had to at least tease you with the pictures.  It was truly easy, quick and filling.

Now, let me see if I can remember how I did this....

scootch of canola oil
1 1/3 lb Lean Ground Beef
1 14.5 oz can enchilada sauce (I like the spicy kind)
1 8oz can tomato sauce
2 cloves garlic
1/2 green pepper chopped
2 small packets Sazon
1 14.5 oz can refried beans
1 small onion diced
12-14 Corn tortillas
Sour Cream


Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees.

Heat oil over medium heat, add green pepper and saute for 4-5 minutes until soft.  Add ground beef and brown.  Drain off any remaining fat after browned.  Add Enchilada Sauce and tomato sauce (or rotel with chilis, depending on your desired heat level). Add chopped garlic cloves and both packets of Sazon.  Continue to cook on medium low for 5 minutes.

Meanwhile, heat refried beans over low heat.  Once beans are heated through remove those and the meat from the heat and begin layering:
Spoon a bit of the meat mixture in the bottom of a 9X9 casserole dish.  Add 4 Corn tortillas, tearing to fit. (I used about 3 1/2 for each layer).  Spoon more of of the meat mixture over the first layer of tortillas, followed by a layer of refried beans, a handful of chopped onions, sour cream and cheddar cheese.  Repeat four times.  The top layer should just be meat mixture and cheese.  
Bake lasagna for 25 minutes until cheese is melted.  Remove from oven and let sit for another 15 minutes.
Serve with favorite toppings, tomatoes, avocado, jalapeno peppers.... 

ENJOY!!  Remember, to make these recipes your own and if you ever have any questions or suggestions, just leave a comment.  I look forward to hearing from you. 

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Pan Fried Trout with Tomato Basil Sauce

If there is ever a reason I won't win "Next Food Network Star" it's because I can't skin a stupid fish.  Now, that doesn't mean I won't BE the next Food Network Star (just to clear up any confusion) I just won't win a competition.  Anyway, my husband...oh, my sweet husband, brings home more fish than I can keep up with.  That's what you do here in Panama City Beach, at least that's what he does.  So, when I saw this recipe in Cooking Light Magazine, I knew I had scored.  Plus..most of the ingredients I have in my garden!!  Double SCORE

And just to make sure I give credit where credit is due, the providers of my fleshy fish are my husband, Eric and my daughter, Sidda. 

From Cooking Light Magazine:







  • 2 ounces chopped pancetta
  • 2 cups cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, divided
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt, divided
  • 1/4 cup small basil leaves
  • 1 tablespoon canola oil, divided
  • 4 (6-ounce) trout fillets, divided
  • 4 lemon wedges


  • 1. Heat pancetta in a medium skillet over low heat. Cook 4 minutes or just until pancetta begins to brown. Add cherry tomatoes, garlic, 1/2 teaspoon pepper, and 1/8 teaspoon salt; cook for 3 minutes or until tomatoes begin to soften. Remove from heat, and stir in basil leaves.
  • 2. Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add 1 1/2 teaspoons oil to pan; swirl to coat. Sprinkle fish evenly with remaining 1/2 teaspoon pepper and remaining 3/8 teaspoon salt. Add 2 fillets to pan; cook 2 minutes on each side or until fish flakes easily when tested with a fork. Remove fish from pan; keep warm. Repeat procedure with remaining 1 1/2 teaspoons oil and remaining 2 fillets. Top fish with tomato mixture. Serve fish with lemon wedges.
*** it's really hot here in florida, my pan was so thirsty..sooo i gave it a dash of white wine after browning the pancetta.***

The tomato basil sauce would be great over angel hair pasta as well. The sky's the limit.  Keep it fresh and easy :)

I served this with a quick sautee of spinach: oil, onions, garlic, crushed red pepper and fresh spinach.  Then finished it off with feta cheese and pine nuts.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

One Butt, Two least

One of my favorite, most favorite comfort foods is slow cooked meat.  I'm sure I've mentioned that before.  I know I've had that dialogue many times with myself anyway.  So the other day, I pick up an 8lb Boston Butt.  Not exactly sure what I wanted to do with it, besides throw it in the oven and roast it low and slow for a few hours.  After about hour two, I started devising a plan to create a garlic shmeared Boston Butt scented candle so I could smell the aroma any time.  But then realized there would be no reward at the end. After about the fourth hour, I saved my butt from the gentle 325 degree heat of my "comfort food generator".

We let it rest and cool a bit, then we attacked the butt.  Can you tell I'm enjoying using that word? Anyway,   my sous Chef, Sidda, and I cut and trimmed the meat, ate a little, trimmed some more, ate a little more, ruined our dinner and threw it in the fridge until I decided what to do.  Of course the next day, the kids and I continued to snack on the pork, straight from the fridge.

I still have a small baggie full of butt in my fridge but so far we've made Cuban sandwiches with sriracha mayo (accompanied by broccoli cheese dipping soup). And later that evening, we cleaned out the fridge and made Pork Lo Mien.

Cuban Sandwiches with sriracha Mayo:


1/4 cup mayo
srirachi sauce to taste
1 tsp of lemon juiceLarge Loaf of Cuban bread
Olive oil to brush on bread before pressing
Roasted pork (or pork deli meat)
Thinly sliced deli ham
Swiss Cheese
Dill pickles, sandwich sliced
Yellow mustard

1. Combing first three ingredients adding srirachi to taste. 
2. Heat Grill pan or panini press
3. Spread mayo on one side of bread and mustard on the other
4. Assemble rest of ingredients onto the bread.
5. Brush both top and bottom of sandwich with olive oil and place on panini press or grill pan
6. If using grill pan, place a heavy bottom pan on top to press sandwich. Press until flattened and cheese is melted.
 Remember this?  My panini press :)



"Clean out the Fridge, Pork Lo Mien"


1 Cup of your favorite teriyaki marinade ( I love soy van products)
1 tbs rice wine vinegar
1/2 cup water
pinch of red chili flakes to taste
2 tbs chopped fresh cilantro

Lo Mien:
Oil to coat pan
1/2 medium onion chopped
One Carrot shredded
1/2 red pepper julienned
1/2 cup shredded cabbage
1/4 cup chicken broth to deglaze pan
1 Cup pork
1 box soba noodles or thin spaghetti noodles
Scallions and/or cilantro to garnish

1. Mix all ingredients for sauce and set aside. 
2. Cook noodles according to package directions to al dente
3. Head oil in saute pan over medium heat
4. Add onions and cabbage and cook until cabbage is a bit wilted, maybe about 3 minutes
5. Add pork and saute until a little crispy and heated through
6. Splash a bit of chicken broth in the pan to scrape up the delicious pork bits
7. Add red peppers and carrots right before you add the noodles to help keep their crunch
8. When noodles are al dente, drain and add to veggie/pork mixture and toss to combine
9. Add your sauce and quickly toss to heat everything together
10. Garnish with chopped scallions and or reserved cilantro
11. Divide into separate bowls, add chopsticks and enjoy the chopstick/noodle entertainment.