Tag Archives: quick

Quick and Easy Guacamole


Quick and easy guacamole

If it takes more than 5 minutes, you did it wrong.

Avocados are the best.  According to an Applebee’s commercial I  heard a few hours ago, avocados are a “superfood.”

Guacamole is a quick and easy topping for a lot of Mexican dishes, and it’s also darn good as a simple dip.

I wanted to drop this little recipe nugget in with the Chipotle Nachos post, but that one was getting a little long-winded already.  So, here it is: Casey’s patented 3 minute Guacamole (makes enough for immediate consumption by 2-3 people).

Here’s what you need:

  • 1 avocado
  • 1/2 lime
  • 1 tablespoon diced cilantro
  • 3-5 shakes of salt
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/8 cup finely diced tomato (optional)

Here’s what to do:

Step 1) Cut the avocado in half.  Remove the pit and the outer shell.  Then cut the avocado into small chunks and put in a bowl.

Step 2) Take a fork or potato masher and mash the avocado until it turns into a chunky paste.

Step 3) Add in the juice from half of a small lime, the salt, cilantro (yum!), olive oil.  Using the fork, mix it all together.

Step 4) Add in the tomatoes, if desired.

guacamole on nachos

See how nicely it finishes the nachos?

A quick note on avocados and guacamole.  They go brown real quick, so make this right before you are ready to eat.  If you have to refrigerate for a while, take a piece of plastic wrap and push it right down over top of the guacamole in the bowl, so that there is no air between the guac and the plastic wrap.  If you just cover the bowl, your guacamole will look like mud in about an hour.


Chipotle Nachos with Beans


chipotle nachos

Perfect football game food

I really like Chipotle (the restaurant).  I know, I know, the burritos ain’t good for ya.  Over 1,000 calories, lots of sodium, fat and cholesterol, and I never feel good after eating a whole one.  But I feel great while I’m eating it.  Delicious.

As a restaurant chain, they also get brownie points for being conscious of dietary restrictions.  Everything but the meat and pinto beans are vegetarian (no rennet used in the cheese), everything but the taco shells are gluten free and they do a good job of buying local and from sustainable farmers.  They claim to buy a larger percentage of naturally raised meat than any other restaurant chain in the county, and I don’t doubt that.

Don’t listen to those who say it’s far worse than a Big Mac.  As they say, haters gonna hate.

But until a few weeks ago, I never really thought about what an actual chipotle chile is.  Turns out, it’s a jalapeno.

Apparently (and this is from Wikipedia, so if I’m wrong, it’s not my fault), jalapeno farmers pick and sell unripe green peppers early in the season and we buy those at grocery stores and produce stands and pickled in jars.  Then, later in the season, the peppers turn bright red and are picked and sold as fresh peppers in the US and Mexico.  At the end of the season, the peppers that are left usually begin to turn brown and shrivel.

Those are the chipotle peppers.  They are picked and then smoked, and you can buy them dry or canned.

chipotle pepper

Dried and smoked chipotle pepper | Photo from Wikipedia

I’ve cooked with ’em twice.  Once for this recipe and another time, where I famously (to my wife, at least) misread “add one canned chipotle pepper” for “add one can chipotle peppers.”  I added the whole can to a soup.  The whole can.  Tasted like lava.

But it’s an easy mistake to make.  It was a can of chipotle peppers in adobo sauce, which smells sort of barbeque-y, not spicy.  So keep that in mind if you try out this recipe.  You need one PEPPER, not one CAN.

Here’s what you need:

  • Tortilla chips
  • 1 cup shredded cheese (your call on the type)
  • 1 can of pinto beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 red bell pepper
  • 1 small onion
  • 1 chipotle pepper in adobo sauce
  • 7 oz (or half a 14 oz can) diced tomatoes with basil and garlic
  • 1 tomato (diced)
  • Shredded lettuce (optional)
  • Sour cream (optional)
  • Guacamole (bought or homemade)

Here’s what to do:

Step 1) Add diced onion and red peppers to a pan with a little olive oil.  Simmer until the onions become translucent (about 5 minutes).

Preppin' the onions

Step 2) Add in one finely diced chipotle pepper in adobo sauce, plus another spoonful or two of the adobo sauce.  Add in the drained/rinsed pinto beans.  Add in the diced tomatoes.  Let it mingle for a few minutes, until everything is blended and hot and the mixture has reduced.

Step 3) Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Step 4) Spread chips on a cookie sheet and top first with cheese and then with the onion/pepper/bean/chipotle mixture.

Step 5) Bake for 5-10 minutes, or until cheese is melted.

Step 6) Remove and top with diced tomato and lettuce, sour cream and guacamole.


Puppy Chow


Puppy Chow Recipe

Chocolately, Peanut Buttery Puppy Chow | Photo by HealthyandLazy

Every once and a while, you’ll see one of those recipes that combines a strange collection of ingredients into a harmonious, delicious creation.  Foreign food groups will mingle and the flavors will bounce off one another with zeal.

This isn’t one of those recipes.

As good as it is, anything covered in chocolate, peanut butter and sugar isn’t really groundbreaking.  But this is worth making, nonetheless.

It’s called Puppy Chow, and it’s not my invention.  It a side-of-the-cereal-box type of recipe, but it fits the theme of this blog nicely.  It really is healthy and lazy. Continue reading


Easy Black Bean Burgers


Black Bean Burger
Easy, delicious black bean burger

 

Black Bean Burgers are a great alternative to hamburgers.  Having a cookout but unsure of what to prepare for the vegetarians in attendance?  Throw down some of these simple, delicious bean patties – even the omnivores might give them a try.  They can be served with all the regular burger accoutrement (Buns, Ketchup, Mustard, Lettuce, Tomato…).  And, even better, they can be cooked on the grill, stove top, or oven.  Flexible and healthy, like yoga.  Oh, and they make dynamite leftovers, and they freeze well – not that there will be any left over.  Looking for a side dish?  Try our simple sweet potato fries.

This recipe makes roughly 6-8 medium-ish burgers.

Continue reading


Simple Sweet Potato Fries


Sweet Potato Fries

Sweet Potato Fries

Sweet potatoes are the best.  There’s really no two ways about it.  They’re packed with vitamins A and C, protein, fiber, iron, calcium, etc.  And, better still, it doesn’t take much work to prepare them.  Before we get there, though, let’s talk about…

Pesticides.

Sorry, the recipe is short, so it’s coming with a shameless plug for your neighborhood farmers’ market.  Potatoes are root vegetables, which means (simply) they grow underground.  They draw their nutrients from the soils around them, soaking up the good stuff they need, as well as the bad stuff we dump on them.  There is overwhelming scientific evidence to show that these pesticides have negative effects on the human body.  One way to avoid this problem?  Buy your fruits and veggies, especially ones with edible skins (root vegetables, grapes, apples, etc), from your local farmer’s market.  Most market vendors are organic, and they are usually at the market to field your questions.  Most times, prices are comparable to your big box grocer, but the food will be fresher and healthier, and you’ll be supporting a local business in the process.  Granted, talking about pesticides before cooking is unconventional, but these choices matter – both on a personal level and a global one.

So, you’ve got your potatoes from the farmers’ market and you’re ready to cook.  Let’s go… Continue reading


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