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Fiesta Week Part 3 – Cabbage Slaw and Refried Beans

Now that you have some good taco recipes from chorizo tacos and chicken tacos, you need to have some good ides to go along with the tacos. Of course guacamole and salsa are always good choices and are pretty easy to make on your own at home. There are also a number of quality store-bought salsas and guacamole if there are some that you  like in particular and don’t have the time or energy to make them yourself. Personally, I always like the homemade better since you have more control over the ingredients and can make it just how you and your family like it the best. Anyway, I wanted to make a few different side dishes that could go well either right on the tacos themselves or right along side of them. Of course, I needed to have a classic refried beans recipe and I decided to use this one that I found on Food Network’s website from Ellie Krieger. It is very simple and can be done in minutes.

Refried Beans

1 tablespoon olive oil

1/2 medium onion, diced

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 teaspoon chili powder

1 (15-ounce) can pinto beans, drained and rinsed

2/3 cup chicken broth, plus more if needed

Salt and pepper

2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro leaves

Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and cook until the onions are tender, about 3 minutes. Stir in the garlic and the chili powder and cook for 1 minute. Stir in the beans and the chicken broth and cook until the beans are warmed through, about 5 minutes. Mash the beans coarsely with the back of a wooden spoon or potato masher, adding more chicken broth to moisten the beans if necessary. Season the beans with salt and pepper, to taste. Stir in the cilantro leaves and serve.

The beans are very tasty and take no time at all to make. You could really do this with any type of beans that you like the best. I think black beans would be great for this well. The beans added great texture to the tacos overall and make a good side dish not just for tacos or other Mexican meals, but for things like chicken or pork entrees as well.

I also wanted to make a quick slaw to go along with the tacos, but I did not want a typical creamy coleslaw that I often make. I needed something lighter and simpler that people could put on their tacos or right on the side of their meals. This simple vegetable slaw from Bon Appetit fit the bill perfectly and only took a few minutes to make for the meal.

Black Bean and Cabbage Slaw

1 15-ounce can black beans, drained and rinsed

1/2 teaspoon cumin

2 teaspoons olive oil

1 tablespoon fresh lime juice

2 cups coleslaw mix

2 green onions, chopped

1/3 cup chopped fresh cilantro

Place the black beans and the cumin in a small bowl and partially mash the beans. Mix the olive oil and the lime juice together in a medium bowl. Add the coleslaw mix, green onions and cilantro to the oil mixture and toss them well to coat them evenly. Add the beans to the coleslaw and toss to coat. Season the slaw with salt and pepper to taste.

Again, it is a very simple recipe that has a great fresh taste and flavor. This slaw could even be used as a taco filling all on its own if you wanted to go with something as more of a vegetarian option for tacos. All you need to do is heat dome tortillas, spoon the mixture onto the tortillas, add a little cheese and any other toppings you like, and you are good to go. I have actually been eating the slaw with my lunch the rest of the week and have added it into some salad that I made for lunch yesterday for an even better variation on regular salad.

That’s all I have for today. Check back next time for another recipe. until then, enjoy the rest of your day and enjoy your meal!

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Posted by on May 8, 2014 in Cooking, Holidays, Salad, Side Dishes

 

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Simple Southern Sides, Part 2 – Jamie Deen’s Homemade Baked Beans

Continuing along with some of the southern side dish recipes I have tried recently, I wanted to try something new with some baked beans so I was on the lookout for another recipe. I have tried good ones in the past but I did not want one that I had to put in the slow cooker and I wanted one that I could put in the oven with the other items I was cooking so I could have the stove top free for other things. I came across this recipe on Food Network from Jamie Deen, one of Paula Deen’s sons. I always like his recipes as he tries to keep things simple and a bit healthier when he can, so when I saw this recipe out there I knew I was going to give it a try.

Homemade Baked Beans

1 pound dried pinto beans
8 slices bacon, chopped
3 cloves garlic, chopped
1/2 large Vidalia onion, chopped
Pinch salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 teaspoons chili powder
4 cups chicken stock
1 cup ketchup
1/2 cup molasses
1/4 cup packed light brown sugar
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon yellow mustard
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce

Sort through the beans and pick out any dried-up beans or small pebbles and discard them. Rinse the beans well in a colander, then add them to a large Dutch oven and cover the beans with 3 inches of water. Bring the beans to a boil for 2 minutes. Cover and let the beans sit on the stove for 1 hour. Drain the beans and rinse them again. Alternatively, you could soak the beans in water overnight to achieve the same results.

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F.

Add the bacon to the same Dutch oven and cook it over medium heat, while stirring, until the bacon has rendered some of its fat, about 3 minutes. Turn the heat up to medium-high, add the garlic and onions and saute until the bacon is almost crisp and the garlic and onions are softened, about 5 minutes. Season the bacon with a good pinch of salt and pepper and then stir in the chili powder, sautéing for 1 minute to toast the spice and until it is fragrant. Stir in 4 cups of water, the chicken stock, ketchup, molasses, brown sugar, balsamic vinegar, yellow mustard and Worcestershire sauce. Stir in the pinto beans, bring the mixture to a simmer, cover the Dutch oven with a lid and place it in the oven for 5 hours. Check the beans every few hours to give them a stir. Add some water to the pot, only if needed, if the beans are looking dry and to prevent them from burning. The beans are ready when they are tender and the sauce is thick.

I thought this recipe was great because it makes use of the dried beans instead of canned, which I find have a lot more flavor to them. There are not many ingredients in this one and once it is under way I was pretty much able to leave it alone and let it cook since I was making these with the spare ribs I made last week, so both were in the oven and are on their own all day while I could do other things and then have dinner ready all at once. The beans had a nice flavor from the mixture of the chili powder, ketchup, molasses and sugar and we all loved them. This recipe does make a lot of beans (the website says it makes 10 servings) so you will have lots leftover to use for other meals or you could freeze some to have on hand for another time.

That’s all I have for today. Check back next time for another recipe as there is always plenty of cooking going on around here and I am always finding new recipes to try. until then, enjoy the rest of your day and enjoy your meal!

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Posted by on March 13, 2014 in Cooking, Rice, Side Dishes

 

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Jennifer Probst

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Laissez Faire

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