Tastes change. It’s sad, but true. A couple weeks ago I remembered an old recipe that I had made, and loved, years ago. I was longing for it— chicken, simmered in tomatoes, onions, and peas. Warm, comforting, easy to prepare and as I recall, very good. It was one of the first meals I made when I was out on my own and newly married and I made it often. I could not erase the cravings and knew I had to make it again.
The tattered and stained recipe confirmed that it was the one, yet I was stumped. Something was very wrong. This recipe was so plain. Where were the seasonings? Surely this was not THAT recipe. I had made it in my dreams so many times last week—and it was thick and rich and packed with flavor. Cruel trick! Not all recipes withstand the test of time.
I was still craving chicken in tomatoes. So, out with the old – and in with the new. This version is the comforting, easy dish I was longing for. It is a recipe that you can easily adapt to your own tastes. I love baked dishes, because it seems I always have things to do while dinner bakes. I love recipes that I can add more zip and flavor to—when I am longing for spiciness. I love dishes that I can add peas to—just because I love peas.
This time, I split the whole chicken—which is surprising easy to do and makes for a fun presentation—but the dish would be really good with any of your favorite, bone-in chicken pieces. I served it on rice, but next time, I just may serve it with mashed potatoes, cooked pasta or just, as is. I will have to see what I am longing for that night.
So, here is my new version of that chicken recipe. Give it a try, as it just might be the perfect dish for your family tonight.
It is like we have been held hostage in the hottest summer for over 25 years. Too hot to cook took on a new meaning—but suddenly my inspiring business partner, Roxanne, suggested I use that trusty slow cooker! Of course! I should have thought of that. One of my favorite slow cooker recipes is one I shared with you before, but I have a new twist on it.
Now, since my daughters grew up, I can take some of those old, family favorites and tweak them to more adult tastes. Chicken and Spinach Quesadillas with fresh Tomato Pico De Gallo is one of those. I used summer-ripe tomatoes, fresh spinach and kept the kitchen cool. What a winner! Don’t despair, for those that want the classic chicken con queso, you will find in the recipe archive. But if you want a summer twist on that favorite recipe, read more now and give it a try. [Read more…]
Chicken Con Queso
1 ½ to 2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breast halves
1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and diced
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1 cup chicken broth
1 can (4 ounces) chopped green chilies, drained
1 cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese
1/2 cup chunky salsa
1/4 cup sour cream
2 tablespoons minced cilantro
Place chicken breasts, jalapeno pepper and garlic in a slow cooker. Season with cumin, salt and pepper. Pour chicken broth over chicken. Cover and cook on low 4 to 5 hours, or until chicken is tender and fully – cooked. Remove chicken and drain. Shred chicken and return to slow cooker. Add green chilies, cheese, salsa, sour cream and cilantro; stir well. Cover and cook on low 30 minutes.
Makes 6 servings
Quesadilla: Lightly brush a flour tortilla with melted butter. Place tortilla, buttered side down, on preheated contact grill. Spoon about 1/4 cup chicken mixture over tortilla. Top with a second tortilla, buttered side up. Grill 1 to 2 minutes or until golden. Repeat with 5 other quesadillas.
Enchiladas: Warm 6 flour tortillas, about 8 inches in diameter. Spoon about 2 tablespoons chicken con queso into center of each tortilla. Fold tortilla over filling, then arrange in a 12 x 8-inch baking dish sprayed with nonstick vegetable coating. Spoon any remaining chicken con queso over center of tortillas. Sprinkle with additional cheese, if desired. Cover and bake at 350 degrees 20 to 30 minutes or until hot and bubbly.