Sunday, June 17, 2012

Enchilada Casserole

I have been looking at this recipe for a few weeks now and I should have taken a picture of this when my sister pulled it out of the oven. It was the best one we have made so far. Sometimes it takes practice. I think we have it down now so I thought you might like it for your family. You can make it hot or mild and it is really good warmed up too.
Enchilada Casserole   350 oven
1 lb. Ground Beef
1 large Onion, chopped
2 Garlic Cloves, chopped
1/3 Cup bottled Picante Sauce [Mild or Med.]
1 [10 ounce] can Rotel [original, mild or hot, drained]
1 [16 ounce] can Refried beans
1 [10 ounce] can Enchilada Sauce
1 C Corn [if frozen cook]
1/2 Cup chopped Black Olives [optional]
Crushed Tortilla Chips, Recommend **Grande Tortilla Chips
3 C grated Mexican Cheese
1 Small container Sour Cream
Method:  Preheat oven to 350. Spray a 9 x 13 pan.
In a wide deep frying pan on medium heat, brown the ground beef with the onion and garlic until beef is cooked through. Drain. 
I have a large bowl in which I put a large sieve over. [Not a colander because the meat will fall through the holes]  Then I put the meat into the sieve and push the grease out. Wipe out skillet with paper towel to be sure there is no grease left.
Now, lower the heat and return the drained Beef, and add the Picante, Rotel, and Beans, Enchilada sauce, olives, corn and salt. Stir and cook until well combined and heated through. Remove from heat.
Place a scant 1 Cup of crushed Tortilla Chips in bottom of sprayed 9 x 13 pan. Put half the beef mixture over it carefully. Top with 1 ½ C Cheese. Put another layer of chips, then the rest of the beef mixture. Top with the rest of the cheese or more. Enough to to have plenty to cover the top completely.  Caution; Do not make the layers of chips too thick. The casserole will be dry if you do. Be sure and cover with foil to keep the cheese from burning.
Bake for 30 to 40 minutes or until bubbly. Test it with a small spoonful in the center. Serve with Sour Cream and extra Chips
** I recommended that brand of chips because they are thick and seem to hold the filling better and they don’t soak up the liquid. We have tried several brands of chips and we liked them the best. You can top it with Salsa, Chopped Green Onions, and a dollop of Sour Cream. This makes an attractive dish and as my sister is fond of saying “The eye eats first”.   

Friday, June 8, 2012

Gayle's Chicken Fried Rice
Haven't blogged in a while because this computer makes me want to hit it with a hammer more times than not and especially when I'm trying to type anything I want to be seen by others. I go, and I do have friends praying for me and this dratted computer, so there is hope.
This recipe I began making about 30 years ago from a Chinese girl who lived across the street from me. I've been making it ever since and it is quite easy [of course] and good. I don't know what a lot of children eat these days besides "Happy Meals" and ice cream but hopefully they like vegetables as this is chock full of them. 
2 Chicken Breasts, slice them, then make large bite size pieces.
1 C Raw Rice, NOT Minute Rice, or Uncles either
Kikkoman Soy Sauce
1 or 2 Eggs
1 Green Pepper
1 or 2 White or Yellow Onions
4 Carrots, peeled
4 Ribs of Celery, peel these a little
2 cloves of Garlic [optional]
Method for the Rice
2 C very hot water, some salt [not a ton because the soy sauce is salty]
1 C Raw Rice
Bring water to a boil and add the rice. Turn the burner down to the lowest heat, cover and let simmer till all the water is gone. This could take 30 minutes or so. I sometimes add a couple of Tablespoons of butter or Smart Balance to the water and then the rice. [I love rice]Do the rice first because it's going to take you some time to cut up the vegetables.
Get all your Vegetables cut up into large bite size pieces and set aside. Next beat the eggs and pour into a buttered small non-stick skillet. Don't scramble, you want the eggs done hard like a flat pancake. When they are done on the bottom flip them and cook until completely cooked. Not to high a heat or you will burn them and burned eggs stink and aren't worth eating.
Cut the egg into bite size pieces too. Set aside.
Now the rice should be done & hot. Now my friend always said to use left over rice in this dish but I always use any left over rice for breakfast with sugar, cinnamon and milk.
ANYWAY...... put a small amount of Canola oil in the large skillet, Dutch Oven or whatever you can saute in.
I think about a scant 1/4th cup. Just enough to cover the bottom. Get the skillet hot [not smoking] but hot and add the chicken pieces. I work them around until they are no longer pink but white on both sides. Takes a couple of minutes. Then add the vegetables, shaking the pan and turning the Veg's. and Chicken a few times. Then add the egg and rice. Now this is a lot of rice and you will need to turn down the burner and then mix the rice in as best you can until they get the idea that they are going to be cooked together. Takes a few minutes. If you feel that the rice is sticking add a dab more of the Canola oil. Now is the time for the Kikkoman. Start shaking it over the whole thing until the rice is brown. Taste and see if you have enough. If not add a few more shakes.  Now you can get Kikkoman with less salt. I did that but I gave it away because I thought it needed SALT!  Put the lid on your pan and let it cook on a very low heat for a few minutes, just until the veggies are starting to get soft. Spoon it up into bowls and you have a real balanced meal. Serve a little fruit for desert and there you have it.