Queso Fundido Mac & Cheese

fundito Fundido means molten or melted and that certain is the case here. The Internet is besieged with fundido recipes it seems, and so you should consider it molten in more than one way.

In other words, play with it and make it your own.

This plays with the concept of mac and cheese and takes it to an all-time high with chiles and chorizo and tons of cheese and crema.

It should be considered comfort food.

It should be considered in your next meal-planning session.

Trust me.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 5 ounces Mexican chorizo
  • 2 large poblano pepper
  • 1/2 diced onion
  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 4 tablespoons flour
  • 2 cups milk
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1½ tablespoons Dijon mustard
  • ¼ teaspoon nutmeg
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon white pepper
  • 3 C  extra sharp cheese, shredded or a combination of Jack, cheddar, Queso Fresco etc.
  • 1½ cups Mexican crema
  • 8 ounces small pasta shells
  • ½ cup crushed, taco chips
  • ½ cup panko bread crumbs
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • Canola or olive oil spray

INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. Blacken your chiles, peel, seed and chop and set aside.
  2. Brown your chorizo and 1/2 diced onion in a skillet and set aside.
  3. In a saucepan, melt the butter, add the flour, stir to a roux and cook for 1 minute.
  4. Add the milk and cream and heat until it starts to simmer and thicken. Add the mustard and nutmeg.
  5. Add the cheese, and stir until melted. Add a bit of pepper.
  6. Cook the pasta until al dente.
  7. Drain and place in an oiled or buttered 10 x 14 baking dish
  8. Add the cooked chorizo, onions, and chiles.
  9. Pour the cheese sauce over the top and spread evenly.
  10. Cover with the panko/taco chips.
  11. Bake uncovered at 375° for about 30 minutes.
  12. Set to cool for about 15 minutes before serving.

SERVES: 8 generously

NOTES: as always, substitute any peppers or add more. I added one chopped Serrano to the cheese sauce. Also you could use ground pork or ground beef if you don’t like chorizo, but you will lose a lot of flavor. If you do so, add a tbsp of chile powder and a tsp of cumin to the cheese sauce.  If you leave out the pasta, make in a cast iron skillet and put under the broiler to brown and serve with chips.

SOURCE: Hispanic Kitchen

Taquitos Supreme

toquitosOh Taquitos. Tired of the usual wings and nachos? Well, this is a great finger food or main dish depending on how you structure it. But it is perfect for grazing during football season.

You can make these so many ways that I’ll just give you the basics. They all work.

So avoid those frozen things and make your own. It takes little time, and the taste will convince you that they should be a staple in your snack or dinner repertoire.

INGREDIENTS:

  • A couple of dozen corn tortillas, 6″ ones are best.
  • 1 lb of ground beef
  • 1/2 medium onion, chopped
  • 1 Hatch or Anaheim or Poblano chile, roasted, peeled, seeded and chopped
  • 1 jalapeño or Serrano minced
  • 1 tbsp chile powder (heat up to you)
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp granulated garlic
  • 1 tsp oregano (Mexican if you can get it)
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 -2 c shredded cheese of your choice, Cotija, Monterey Jack, Cheddar or a mix)
  • oil for frying

INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. Saute the ground beef in a saute pan with the onions, roasted and other chiles, and seasonings, until meat is done.
  2. Stack the tortillas and cover with a damp cloth and place in microwave for 30 seconds to warm up and make pliable.
  3. Heat oil (1 cup or more) in a separate skillet to 350°.
  4. Place a tablespoon of the meat mixture across the tortilla, a bit off center, add a bit of cheese and roll as tightly as you can, securing with a toothpick.
  5. Place in the heated oil for about 3 minutes a side until crispy.
  6. Drain on rack lined with paper toweling.

SERVES: 4

NOTES: You can do just about anything with these. Substitute shredded cooked chicken or pork, or shredded beef as the meat, or use shrimp or fish. Make vegetarian ones made with beans.  Use any cheese you prefer. Serve with guacamole, sour cream, salsa, pico de gallo, or my Chile Tomato sauce (last post before this one) for dipping. Serve as finger food or by a plate with 3-4 taquitos apiece napped with sauce and additional cheese with sides of rice and beans.

SOURCE: Sherry Peyton

Stack of Quesadillas Casserole

quesa1This is a delightful little recipe that combines all my favorite things into one casserole dish. It’s not a lot of work and is perfect for putting together at the last minute.

You can make this as spicy as you wish, or tone it down for children as needed.

Hope you give it a try.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1/2 lb each ground beef and ground pork
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 1  red or yellow sweet pepper diced
  • 3-4 Anaheim, poblano, jalapeño, chiles, sear the skins, remove and then chop. You can put them together in whatever manner you wish. A Serrano could be added but this bumps up the heat a bit.
  • About three tablespoons of a “taco seasoning” or Mexican blend of spices.
  • 3 cups of a blend of  shredded cheeses (pepper jack, cheddar, queso fresco or any other you wish)
  • 1  1/2 c salsa ( homemade pico de gallo can be whirred up in the blender)
  • 1/4 c fresh cilantro chopped
  • 6 or so corn or flour tortillas

INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. Brown the meats along with the onion, and peppers.
  2. Once browned, add the spices and mix thoroughly.
  3. Oil a casserole dish (3 qt is fine, round if you have it).
  4. Place a tortilla on the bottom, spoon some of the meat mixture on, then some salsa  then some cheese. Sprinkle with a bit of cilantro. Continue in this fashion until you have about 6 layers, ending with cheese on the top.
  5. Bake in a 350° oven for 30 minutes or so, until cheese has melted and all is bubbly.

SERVES: 6

NOTES: This is very versatile since you can make it as hot or not as you wish, and also play to your own favorites in cheese. This rewarms quite nicely for leftovers.

SOURCE: Sherry Peyton

Bring It On Burrito Pie!

tortialla pieThere are a million of these recipes, and so don’t hold me to anything seriously authentic, except for the ingredients. I have adapted this one from one from All Recipes, but I adapted it so much, it’s really my own.

It’s just a really nice, filling, and satisfying meal all around.

It rewarms very well, and actually would freeze well too.

You can vary it as you wish to, but I’m giving you the basics.

As always, you can make this simpler by using a lot of prepackaged stuff, or make it much better and full of love with a bit more time and attention.

It serves well with some nice Spanish rice and the usual chopped lettuce and tomato side.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 1/2 lbs ground round
  • 1 lg onion, diced
  • 2 cloves of garlic, microplaned
  • 1 4 oz can of black olives, drained and sliced if whole
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tbsp chile powder
  • salt and pepper
  • 2-3 ancho, Anaheim, Hatch, or other similar chiles, roasted, peeled, seeded and chopped.
  • 1 c of diced tomato, seeded
  • 1 1/2 c salsa (make pico de gallo and whirr up in a blender or food processor until it’s fairly smooth. (can substitute jarred salsa)
  • 2 cans pinto beans, drained, rinsed, and then mashed with a potato masher until lumpy but broken down.
  • 8 or so flour tortillas ( depending on their size and the size of your baking dish)
  • 1 c corn (fresh, canned or frozen)
  • 10-12 oz of cheddar, Monterey Jack, or Mexican cheese of your choice.

INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. Brown the meat, onion and garlic until the meat is done. Break up the meat so that it is loose.
  2. Add the olives, roasted chiles, tomato, salsa, and beans, and mix together. Add the corn.
  3. Add the spices and herbs.
  4. Simmer for 15 minutes or so, just to work the flavors together.
  5. Oil the baking dish (9 x 13 is good, but deeper pans are suggested–a large springform pan is excellent but cover the bottom with foil in to keep it from leaking and place on a rimmed baking sheet)
  6. Layer a thin layer of the meat mixture in the bottom of the pan.
  7. Cover with a layer of the tortillas.
  8. Then a layer of the meat, and cover with cheese.
  9. Another layer of tortillas, meat and cheese,
  10. A third of you have room.
  11. Bake at 350° for about 30 minutes, or until bubbly.

SERVES: 6 easily

NOTES: Serve with sour cream, pico de gallo, guacamole, and or green chile salsa.

Patty Melt With a Southwestern Flair

patty-melt-01Sometimes you need a burger plus. Something like a burger, but not quite a burger.

So kick off the bun, and add some rye bread. And well, the recipe follows. ‘

Take your classic patty melt and send it down here to New Mexico and we will put our own spice to it. You won’t be disappointed if you try this one.

This is a user-friendly recipe, and even the kids will pretty much like this I think.

Makes for a great little Saturday light dinner with some homemade fries and some homemade coleslaw.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 lb of ground round
  • 1 med-lg onion, sliced
  • 2 Anaheim chiles or Hatch if you can get them
  • slices of Monterey Jack cheese
  • slices of rye bread
  • mustard of your choice

INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. Slice the onions and place in a saute pan with about 3 tbsp of butter, and cook slowly until nicely caramelized–about 30-45 minutes. Set aside.
  2. Place your chiles on an open flame or under a broiler and char the skins thoroughly. Scrap off the skins, cut off the tops and remove the seeds. Chop into a nice dice. Set aside.
  3. Take the ground meat and place between two sheets of wax paper.  Shape into a rectangle. Using a rolling-pin, roll until it’s evenly distributed and can be cut into six pieces of the same approximate size. (rye bread if used is long and you will use two pieces of patty for each sandwich.)
  4. Cook the meat until done to your preference.
  5. Remove meat to a plate and place two slices of bread in the pan and brown evenly. Place the 2 pieces of meat on each slice, then scatter some chiles over the meat. Add some onions. Then add three slices of the cheese on top.
  6. Place the top slices of bread on each and with care, turn over and saute until the bottom slices are browned.
  7. Serve it up with mustards of your choice.

Serves: 3 generous sandwiches

 

 

Cheeky Chimichangas

 

 

I just love to eat chimichangas.

Making them? Well they are a bit labor intensive.

But there is an upside. A pound of ground round will make you about 20 of the babies, and they freeze nicely. So it’s like instant great meal in the freezer time!

Serve it up with some green chile salsa, guacamole, and sour cream and you are just gonna moan with delight. I promise.

And I don’t deep fry because it wastes entirely too much oil. An inch in a cast iron skillet is more than enough. So you have no excuses. Go ahead and make some!

 

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 lb ground beef (or equivalent shredded cooked chicken)
  • 1 15 oz can of refried beans (make you own if you desire)
  • 2 chiles of your choice–poblano, Anaheim, Hatch, etc, blistered and peeled, seeded and chopped
  • 2 Tbsp of my Mexican seasoning (taco seasoning basically but I like my own)
  • 3 c (approx) shredded or crumbled cheese of your choice (Monterey Jack, cheddar, queso fresca, etc)
  • Oil for frying
  • 20 or so 6″ flour tortillas

INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. Brown the beef, adding the taco seasonings.
  2. Add the chiles and  cook until beef is cooked and chiles are softened.
  3. Take a tortilla and spread a tablespoon or so of the refried beans upon it.
  4. Spoon 1-2 tbsp of the beef mixture into the center.
  5. Add a tbsp or so of the shredded cheese.
  6. Fold in the sides, and fold and roll into a cylinder (secure with a toothpick)
  7. Place in hot oil at a temperature of around 375°. Cook until tortilla is starting to brown and bit and is crunchy. Turn and do the other side.
  8. Remove and place on some paper towelling to absorb the oil. Continue cooking in batches until all the beef mixture is used up.

Serves: About 18 or so.

NOTE: Serve with shredded lettuce, salsa of your choice, guacamole, and sour cream.
Freeze by letting the chimichangas cook to room temperature and then placing them in a freezer bag. Remove as many as you wish and simply lay on a cookie sheet and place in a 375° until defrosted and heated through.

 

Beefy-Corn-Noodle Bake and Scarf It UP!

It’s a mean old world out there.

So we need lots of pure comfort food to help us navigate.

This is another of those. You just sit and eat until you can’t eat any more.

And you feel satisfied.

And you go back on the diet tomorrow.

And it violates all my rules because it has 2 cans of canned soup in it.

I feel soooo decadent!

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 lb ground beef
  • 1 med onion diced
  • 1 med red pepper, diced
  • 1 tsp pepper
  • 1 1/2 c corn, fresh, frozen or canned
  • 8-10 oz egg noodles, cooked (other pasta will work too
  • 1 can each  cream of mushroom and cream of celery
  • 2 cups shredded cheese of any kind (optional)
  • 1 1/2 c scrunched up potato chips or other crackers of your choice

INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. Brown the meat and add the onion and red pepper and cook until nearly done.
  2. Add the pepper and corn and mix.
  3. Add the soups and mix thoroughly.
  4. Add the cooked noodles.
  5. Mix and turn into a 9 x 13 casserole baking dish. Add the cheese if using and the chip topping.
  6. Cover with foil and place in a 375° for 30 minutes. Remove and uncover and put back in oven for another 15 minutes.

Serves: 6

Note: You can make this up in the morning sans the chip topping and put in fridge for later. Add about 15 minutes of reheat time if you do. Just put on the chips before you pop in the oven.