You may ask: is this meal healthy, even in a relative sense?
You might ask: is this actual cooking, or did you just throw everything in your pantry together and call it a meal?
In fact, you could ask lots of things.
(The answers, by the way, in respective order: no, sort of, and yes, absolutely. I don’t feel badly about that.)
Inspired by my very first cookbook…wait for it…the Complete Idiot’s Guide to 20 Minute Meals. That bad boy has been around so long it’s missing pages and a spine. But it was a backbone to my college experience, and I’m never getting rid of it.
(Things That Are in My Pantry) Enchiladas
1 15 oz can corn, drained and rinsed
1 15 oz can black beans, drained and rinsed
about 4 oz cream cheese
about 6 oz shredded cheddar or monterey jack cheese
dash of the following spices: cumin, chili powder, taco or adobo seasoning, crushed reds
1 jar salsa, any kind you like – or your own homemade, if you’ve got the ingredients + time
1/2 onion, sliced thinly
1 poblano pepper, sliced thinly
salt & pepper
4-6 large flour tortillas
optional/topping: limes, cilantro, green onion, sour cream, hot sauce, more cheese, etc.
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. In an oven safe pan, thoroughly mix together the corn, black beans, cream cheese and shredded cheese, spices, and about 2/3 of the jar of salsa. Bake for about 10 minutes.
In a saute pan, heat some olive oil. Cook the onion and peppers down, about 5-7 minutes, and season with a little bit of salt and pepper.
Pull the corn mixture from the oven and spread a bit down the middle of a tortilla. Top with a bit of onions/peppers, then roll it up and put in another oven safe pan. Repeat, placing the enchiladas in neat, tight little rolls, until the filling is all used up. Or, use the rest of it to make nachos! Top with a little bit of cheese and salsa and put back in the oven for another 10 minutes.
Serve with your choice of accoutrement – a squeeze of lime juice as they come out of the oven, a little bit of sour cream, anything your decadent little heart desires.
No one is winning any Michelin stars for this meal. BUT this requires very little effort on your part, makes tons of leftovers, and can be tweaked in about 1001 ways to suit what you have in your pantry, so you, too, can eat un-healthfully and without guilt. It’s pretttttttty tasty, to boot.
One of the nicest things about living where we live is that we walk to and fro work. (I won’t lie: during the week, I get to feeling pretty self-righteous about the numbers on my Jawbone. Of course, those numbers take a swan dive off a very high cliff on weekends, when I prioritize catching up on all my Hart of Dixie.)
Sometimes, I walk home with my friend and co-worker, K. We spend most of the walk talking food. Tonight, K suggested making these – inspired by Smitten Kitchen.
Broccoli & Cauliflower Quesadillas
1 bag mixed broccoli & cauliflower florets
salt, pepper, chili powder
1/2 large onion or 1 medium onion, sliced
1 poblano pepper, seeded and roughly chopped
1 jalapeno, seeded and roughly chopped
juice from 1/2 lime
3-4 scallions, chopped
about 2 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese
optional: sour cream, cilantro, avocado
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Scatter the broccoli and cauliflower florets in a large baking pan, coat with a bit of olive oil, and toss with salt, pepper, and a dash of chili powder. Roast for about 20 minutes.
As the florets roast, heat olive oil in a saute pan, add the onions and cook over medium heat for a few minutes, until translucent. Add the jalapeno and poblano peppers and cook another 5-6 minutes.
When the florets are done roasting, add to a food processor and roughly pulse them just a few times – you don’t want them turning them to mush. Add the lime juice and give a quick stir with a fork.
Build your quesadilla: spread the broccoli/cauliflower mixture over one tortilla, add the onion and peppers over it, top with cheese and a couple of scallions. Cover with one more tortilla on top. Heat a large grill pan over medium heat and cook the quesadilla for about 3 minutes before flipping – very carefully – to the other side, and cooking another 2-3 minutes.
Cut into wedges and serve with a bit of sour cream (I gussied mine up with a little lime juice and cumin), cilantro, and avocado.
Did I use one too many pans to make…quesadillas? While we’re on the subject, does anyone need to use a food processor to make…quesadillas? Yes, and absolutely not, respectively. Still, these were delicious (although honestly, how could they not be, between veggies, cheese and carbs?!). I think the Husband will be mighty pleased to find these in his lunch bag tomorrow.