Grilled Shrimp Tacos

>> Friday, December 30, 2011

My sweet mother-in-law bought me five (5!) new cookbooks for Christmas this year and I've had such fun pouring through them ogling all the wonderful new recipes I have at my fingertips. My sweet mother (and father) bought me the new Amazon Kindle Fire for Christmas and I have been downloading new books like crazy, but I know that I'll never trade in my cookbooks. When it comes to cookbooks, I want the tangible copy versus its online companion. Besides, I hate when I'm cooking from an online recipe and my computer (or Kindle) goes to sleep and I have to 'wake' it back up to see the next steps of the recipe. Nothing like raw meat juice sluiced across the keyboard...

Anyway, this next recipe is from one of my new cookbooks that Ruthie gave me - The Best of America's Test Kitchen 2012. This cookbook is excellent! If you're unfamiliar with ATK, the chefs set out to master a recipe, making it in a multitude of different ways until they find the very best recipe. I love that they're doing all the hard work for me! And I have to say that this recipe for shrimp tacos was awesome! After dining out so much and eating all the rich holiday food, Andrew and I were ready for some lighter and healthier fare. The grilled shrimp tacos, paired with chips and queso, made for great football munchies to eat while we watched the Holiday Bowl. Go Horns!

This recipe came together fairly quickly, but if you're looking for a shortcut, make sure to buy already peeled and deveined shrimp from the seafood counter to save time. Also, if you can't find jicama in your grocery store, I think you could substitute a peeled tart green apple. While it wouldn't have the same taste, it would give the salsa a nice crunch and compliment the sweetness of the pineapple.

Grilled Shrimp Tacos with Pineapple-Jicama Salsa
adapted from The Best of America's Test Kitchen 2012

Good quality store-bought (or homemade) guacamole
3 tablespoons lime juice (2 limes)
10 oz jicama, peeled and cut into 1/4-inch pieces
2 cups pineapple, measured and then cut into 1/4-inch pieces
2 tablespoons minced fresh cilantro
1 jalapeno, stemmed, seeded and minced
1 small shallot, minced
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 teaspoons chile powder
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 lb. small to medium shrimp, peeled, deveined and tails removed
12 (6-inch) corn tortillas

Combine 2 tablespoons more lime juice, jicama, pineapple, cilantro, jalapeno and shallot in a bowl. Season with salt to taste. Cover and refrigerate until ready to serve.

Heat oil in 8-inch skillet over medium heat. Add garlic, chili powder, coriander, cumin and cayenne and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute. Transfer to medium bowl and let cool to room temperature, then stir in remaining 1 tablespoon lime juice and 1/2 teaspoon salt.

Add your shrimp to spice mixture and toss to coat. Refrigerate, covered, covered for 15 minutes. Don't marinate shrimp for longer than 15 minutes because the citric acid will start to 'cook' the shrimp and turn them rubbery!

Meanwhile, heat an indoor grill pan to medium-high heat. Place tortillas on grill pan, flipping once, to heat through. Remove them to a plate and cover with foil to keep warm. Place shrimp on grill pan and cook, flipping once, until they turn opaque, about 2-4 minutes. Transfer shrimp to a platter and cover with foil to keep warm until all shrimp are cooked.

To serve, place 4-5 shrimp in each tortilla, top with a dollop of guacamole mixture and a dollop of pineapple salsa.


The Best Artichoke Dip

>> Thursday, December 29, 2011

I absolutely adore artichokes in all forms. I'm pretty sure I've never met an artichoke that I didn't immediately stuff into my mouth. Usually I steam my artichokes, but I saw this pretty picture of an artichoke dip on Pinterest and thought that the corresponding recipe for sounded pretty darn tasty. Plus I had all the ingredients (except for the canned artichokes) already in my kitchen. Sweet!

When I made this dip (and I've made it twice in the last two weeks), I use canned artichoke bottoms rather than artichoke hearts. I've found that the artichoke leaves that are attached to the hearts don't have nearly as good of flavor or texture as the bottom does - so why bring along excess baggage when you can just eat the good stuff?

Two quick notes: the recipe as written doesn't serve more than 8, so if you're serving a crowd, you'll want to double or triple the recipe. Also, you can prepare the dip ahead of time, refrigerate it and then bake it just before serving.

The Best Artichoke Dip
adapted from Picky Cook

1/2 cup freshly grated parmesan
1/4 cup mayonnaise (you can use low fat)
1/4 cup sour cream (you can use low fat)
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon onion powder
1/2 teaspoon paprika, divided
kosher salt and pepper, to taste
1 14-oz can artichoke bottoms, drained and finely chopped
3/4 cup shredded Italian cheese blend
crackers or baguette slices, for serving

In a small mixing bowl, whisk together parmesan cheese, mayo, sour cream, garlic powder, onion powder, 1/4 teaspoon paprika, salt and pepper. Add artichoke and gently stir to combine. Transfer to a 3-cup ramekin or other small baking dish. Sprinkle shredded Italian cheese over the artichoke mixture. Sprinkle on the remaining 1/4 teaspoon paprika.

Bake at 350 for 25 minutes (35 minutes if it has been refrigerated). Turn on broiler and broil for 1-2 minutes or until cheese is browned and bubbly. Let cool for 5 minutes before serving with crackers and/or toasted baguette slices.


Tomato Basil Soup with Grilled Cheese Croutons

>> Wednesday, December 28, 2011

I've seen this recipe floating around on Pinterest and decided to make it for dinner one night. Since it's supposed to be just like La Madeleine's soup, I served it with a Caesar salad - which is the classic combo I always order whenever I go to LM. Just for fun, I sprinkled grilled cheese croutons on top of the soup.

Usually when I make a meatless dinner, it's met with some resistance from the hubby and from the baby. (Seriously, the kid LOVES meat - she asks for meat as a snack!) But much to my surprise, I didn't hear one complaint and every plate was licked clean.

Tomato Basil Soup with Grilled Cheese Croutons
adapted from GirlTalk

2 24-oz jars of tomato puree
1/3 cup fresh basil leaves, measured and then finely minced
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1 cup heavy cream (I think next time I will use less - maybe 1/2 cup)
1 stick unsalted butter
salt and pepper to taste

6 slices good quality bread
6 slices Muenster cheese
3 slices sharp cheddar cheese

For the soup, heat tomato puree, basil, garlic powder, salt and pepper over medium-low heat. Add cream and butter and stir mixture until butter is melted. Taste and adjust seasonings, if necessary.

Meanwhile, assemble sandwiches by placing 2 slices of Muenster and 1 slice of cheddar between 2 slices of bread. Repeat to make 3 sandwiches. In a saute pan over medium heat, melt a small pat of butter and cook sandwiches, flipping halfway through, until both sides are golden brown and cheese is melted. Remove sandwiches to a cutting board. Slice sandwiches into small squares.

Ladle soup into bowls and top with a handful of grilled cheese croutons.


Barefoot Contessa's Steak Sandwich

>> Monday, December 19, 2011

All morning I delayed going to the grocery store because I didn't feel inspired to make our weekly menu. I think I spent so much time planning our Christmas menu that I hadn't given any thought to what we'd eat the rest of the week. I knew I had to go to the grocery store today (we were down to only 4 diapers!), so I turned on Food Network so see if anything sounded good. And oh boy, did it ever!

Barefoot Contessa made a steak sandwich that looked divine and I jotted down the ingredients I lacked. Because it can be thrown together pretty quickly, and because I couldn't get my mind off of it, I made it for dinner tonight. This sandwich was restaurant quality, in my opinion. Good, crusty bread married with tender steak, caramelized onions, peppery arugula and this wonderful mustard-mayo sauce. Delicious! The mustard-mayo sauce is really simple to make but it adds just the right creamy tang to the sandwich - so don't think of skipping it! Andrew gave it two thumbs up and asked for it to be added into the regular dinner rotation.

As with any steak recipe, you can cook your steak to your desired doneness. While Andrew is a fan of rare steak, I tend to like mine on the more well-done side, so I cooked it ours a happy medium (pun intended).

Barefoot Contessa's Steak Sandwich
recipe via Food Network

1 (12-oz) 1-inch think NY strip steak
kosher salt & freshly ground black pepper
olive oil
1-2 onions, sliced into rings
1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
2 mini ciabatta rolls, sliced in half
1/2 cup arugula leaves

Mustard-Mayo Sauce
1/4 cup good quality mayonnaise
1 1/2 teaspoons whole-grain mustard
1 1/2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
1 tablespoon sour cream
pinch of kosher salt

Season the steak liberally with salt and pepper on both sides. Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a cast iron skillet over medium-high heat until it's almost smoking, then sear the steak on each side for about 1-2 minutes. Reduce heat to low and cook steak for about 7-14 minutes, turning once, until steak is cooked to desired doneness. Remove to a plate, cover with foil and set aside.

In the same skillet, heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion and thyme and saute for 10-15 minutes, until onions are browned and caramelized, stirring frequently. (I got distracted at this point so my onions were a little too brown. Oops!) After the onions are finished cooking, thinly slice steak into strips.

Meanwhile, in a small bowl, whisk together the mayonnaise, the two mustards, sour cream and salt.

To assemble the sandwiches, liberally spread some of the Mustard-Mayo Sauce on the top half of each roll. Place a generous layer of the steak strips on the bottom half of the roll. Top steak with onions and arugula. Cover the sandwiches with the top half of the bun.


My Christmas Menu

Andrew, Finley and I are hosting our parents for Christmas again this year. I love to entertain and it's so convenient for us to host so that Finley can go down for her nap easily. So it works out well for us! I decided to post my (tentative) menu here because it is an easy way for me to keep track of my recipes...and hopefully maybe it will give you all some ideas too :-)

I'm planning on making the turnovers, scones, ham glaze, grits, haricot verts and salad dressing the day before and reheat before serving. Fun times ahead!

Breakfast/Snacking while we open presents:



Chicken Salsa Verde with Cornmeal-Cilantro Dumplings

>> Tuesday, December 13, 2011

This was a wonderful Southwestern spin on the classic chicken 'n dumplings. And it is the perfect kind of dinner to serve when it's cold and dreary outside. The recipe came together quickly, especially if you have your chicken, green onions and cilantro chopped ahead of time. While it baked, I was able to get the kitchen cleaned too. Nothing is more relaxing than sitting down to a hearty and delicious dinner with a glass of white wine and a clean kitchen to boot!

A quick word of warning: Depending on what brand of salsa you buy and it's level of spiciness, you may need/want to add more or less salsa to the chicken mixture. I used half of a jar of green salsa that was labeled 'medium heat' and it was still pretty spicy. Andrew and I liked it that way, but it was too spicy for Finley to eat.

Chicken Salsa Verde with Cornmeal-Cilantro Dumplings
as seen on Savory Sweet Life, recipe adapted from Pam Anderson's Perfect One-Dish Dinners

for the chicken
4 tablespoon salted butter
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1 (14.5-oz) can chicken broth
1/2 (15-oz) jar of salsa verge (about 1 cup)
1 (5-oz) can evaporated milk
1 large rotisserie chicken, meat picked off and left in large chunks
1 cup corn (fresh or frozen)

for the dumplings
1 cup whole milk
3 tablespoons salted butter
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup yellow cornmeal
1 tablespoon baking powder
3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 cup green onions, thinly sliced
1/4 cup fresh cilantro, minced
1/3 cup Monterey pepper jack cheese, shredded

For the chicken, heat butter over medium-heat in a large, deep oven-proof skillet or Dutch oven. Whisk in flour to make a paste. Mix broth, salsa verde and evaporated milk in a bowl. Add flour mixture to paste all at once. Whisk, vigorously at first, until mixture simmers and thickens to sauce consistency. Stir in chicken and corn and heat through. Lower heat to low and cover to keep warm. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

For the dumplings, heat milk and butter in a small saucepan until steamy. Mix flour, cornmeal, baking powder, salt, scallions, cilantro and cheese in a medium bowl with a fork. Stir in milk mixture to form a firm, sticky dough. With your fingers, pinch off large ping-pong ball sized pieces of dough and drop onto chicken mixture. Return chicken to a simmer over medium-high heat. Cover and transfer pan to oven and bake until dumplings are cooked through, about 15 to 20 minutes.


Weekly Meal Plan - December 11th thru December 16th

>> Sunday, December 11, 2011

Chicken Salsa Verde with Cornmeal Dumplings, Green Salad

Tomato Basil Soup with Grilled Cheese Croutons, Caesar Salad

and just for fun - S'Mores Bars


S'mores Bars

>> Friday, December 9, 2011

I saw this idea on a friend's blog and I thought it sounded great. This recipe is really a rice-krispy-treats-meets-s'mores, and rice krispy treats and s'mores are two of my simple favorites!

Originally I made these to these to my friend, Lora, who was in the hospital after having her baby girl. Before I left for the hospital, I sampled one to make sure they were as tasty as I thought they should be and then sent all the other bars to Lora. Afterwards, I kept thinking about how good they were and wondering why I hadn't saved at least a couple for our house. So I did what anyone else would have done - I ran to the store and made another batch! And I'm not the only one who loved them. Another friend visited Lora in the hospital and emailed me for the recipe as soon as she got home! Yes, they are that good!

S'mores bars
as seen on Tiny Tidbits and recipe adapted from Two Peas & Their Pod

4 1/2 tablespoons butter
1 (10.5-oz) bag of mini marshmallows, divided
8 cups Golden Grahams cereal
6 Hershey's chocolate bars

In a large pot over medium heat, melt butter and add 2/3 bag of marshmallows. Stir frequently until marshmallows are melted. Take pot off heat and stir in cereal, coating cereal completely. Pour cereal into a greased 9-inch-x-13-inch pan and push down slightly on the cereal to compact it in the pan.

Preheat broiler. Place Hershey's bars on top of cereal. You may need to break them to get even coverage. Sprinkle the remaining marshmallows on top. Pop pan under the broiler, watching closely. Broil until the marshmallows are slightly charred on top.

Let cool completely and cut into bars.


Sloppy Cubano Sandwiches

>> Wednesday, December 7, 2011

I'm not sure why I am so enamored by Sloppy Joes, but I am! While I love the original, I also like to spice things up a bit. This recipe popped up on my blog feed this weekend, and I immediately knew I had to try it. I've already professed my love for Sloppy Joes, but I also love a good Cuban sandwich - pork, ham, cheese, mustard and pickles sandwiched between some good, crusty bread. Yum! This recipe is a happy marriage between two great sandwich staples and I could not have been happier with how this turned out. A delicious revision to the Sloppy Joe!

I altered the recipe to have the slow cooker do most of the work for me. With a two-year-old, I always try to do as much work ahead of time (usually while Finley is in preschool or taking her nap) so that I don't have to be slaving over dinner when she's awake and wanting to play. But if you'd like make the recipe on the stovetop, then be sure and look at the original recipes here and here.

Sloppy Cubano Sandwiches
adapted from Taste and Tell and Rachael Ray

6 oz chorizo, casings removed and finely chopped
1 lb ground pork
1/2 white onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon ground coriander
2 teaspoons paprika
1 teaspoon allspice
salt and pepper
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1 lime, juice and zest
1 cup chicken broth
1 8-oz can tomato sauce
2-3 tablespoons tomato paste
4 rolls or buns, split in half
4 slices Swiss cheese
dill pickle slices
yellow mustard

In a large saute pan over medium heat, cook chorizo until lightly browned, about 2 minutes. Add the pork and onions and continue to cook another 4-6 minutes or until browned. If there is a lot of grease, drain the fat. (Mine didn't render much fat so I skipped this step.)

Meanwhile, in the pot of your slow cooker, stir together garlic, paprika, ground coriander, allspice, brown sugar, Worcestershire sauce, lime juice, lime zest, chicken broth, tomato sauce and salt and pepper (to taste). Add the meat and onion mixture and stir to combine. Cook on low 3-4 hours. Stir in tomato paste just before serving.

When you're ready to eat, preheat your oven's broiler. Toast the split buns. Divide the meat mixture between the buns and place a slice of cheese on each. Broil until the cheese melts, about 30 seconds. Top with lots of pickles, spread a liberal dollop of mustard on the top half of the bun and enjoy!


Maple-Bacon Biscuit Bake

>> Tuesday, December 6, 2011

I absolutely love sweet and salty combinations, but alas the Hubby Bubby isn't the fan that I am. Usually I try to sneak them in at dinner time but I always feel guilty making dishes that Andrew may not like. But when I saw this recipe, I knew I had a winner. Andrew loves sweet breakfasts (cinnamon rolls are a fave around here) so I knew he'd be game for a glorified monkey bread with some bacon thrown in for good measure.

I fiddled with the recipe just a bit to make it easier for me. I substituted store-bought biscuit dough for homemade and I assembled the maple-bacon syrup the night before to cut down on my cooking time in the morning. This was a delicious treat to wake up to! But really what's not to love - maple syrup, bacon and biscuit dough baked into sticky, gooey, caramel-y perfection!

Maple-Bacon Biscuit Bake
adapted from Pink Parsley who adapted it from King Arthur Flour

8 oz hickory smoked bacon, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
1/3 cup maple syrup (don't use the fake stuff!)
3 tablespoons reserved bacon fat
1 tube refrigerated buttermilk biscuit dough

The night before, cook the bacon in a skillet over medium heat until it is browned and crispy. Using a slotted spoon, transfer bacon to a paper towel-lined plate to drain. Reserve 3 tablespoons of the bacon fat and discard the rest.

In a small mixing bowl, whisk together brown sugar, flour, syrup and bacon fat. Stir in the bacon. Liberally spray a 9-inch deep-dish pie plate with nonstick spray. Pour the bacon mixture into the bottom of the pan. Allow to cool and then refrigerate overnight.

The next morning, preheat the oven to 450 degrees. Cut each biscuit into quarters. Nestle the biscuit pieces atop the maple-bacon mixture. Bake for 10-12 minutes. Turn off the oven and leave the pan in the oven for an additional 5-10 minutes, or until the biscuits are golden brown.
Remove from oven and immediately invert the dish onto the serving plate. Lift off the pie plate and serve!


Smoky Sweet Potato Soup

>> Monday, December 5, 2011

This amazing soup made an appearance on our Thanksgiving table (courtesy of my mother!) and I think it earned a place on our annual menu. The soup has a wonderful depth of flavor from the apple, leeks and the chipotle pepper and I loved the little bit of crunch that the pepitas add. Another thing to love about this warm and hearty soup is that it gets it's creamy texture from the veggies - not heavy cream or whole milk! Overall, this is a great simple soup for the fall and perfect for a holiday menu!

Smoky Sweet Potato Soup
recipe from Martha Stewart

3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
3 cloves of garlic, minced
1 small leek, white and light green parts only, thinly sliced and rinsed well
1 Granny Smith apple, peeled, cored and cut into 1-inch cubes
1 celery stalk, thinly sliced
1 teaspoon finely grated fresh ginger
2 lbs sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1-inch cubes
6 cups chicken broth
1 medium chipotle chile in adobo sauce
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup salted pepitas

Heat oil in a large pot over medium heat. Cook garlic and leek until translucent, about 4 minutes. Add apple, celery and ginger and cook another 3 minutes. Add sweet potatoes and stock and cook until potatoes are tender, about 15 minutes. Add chipotle chile.

Using an immersion blender (or working in batches, use a blender*) to puree the soup until smooth. Season with salt and pepper. Sprinkle with pepitas before serving.

*For your safety, if using a blender, remove cap from hole in lid and cover with a dish towel to prevent splattering.


Fauxstess Cupcakes

>> Sunday, December 4, 2011

I've been following Annie's Eats for a long while and I always love her recipes. Often she convinces me to branch out and attempt new recipes when I read her reviews and see her beautiful pictures. When I think of Annie's Eats, I always think of cupcakes. She has so many wonderful and fun cupcake recipes! Recently I made her Butterfinger Cupcakes and they were delicious - I remember being so surprised at how closely the frosting tasted like a Butterfinger! But I digress...

While I don't know Annie in reality, I feel like I do. She has invited me into her kitchen and her life just by reading her blog. Every morning, I look forward to drinking my cup of coffee and reading my cooking blogs, especially hers. But on Thanksgiving, Annie posted that her father died unexpectedly and that she would be taking a break from blogging to mourn and cope with the loss. She offered a gentle reminder to be extra thankful for the ones you love because you never know how long you'll have them. I can't tell you how many times since then that I have squeezed my daughter or my husband tight, consciously being thankful that they are here with me.

I didn't realize how much I would miss Annie's posts until there weren't any new ones popping up in my blogger feed each morning. To fulfill my needed dose of Annie's Eats, I combed through her archives, and of course found tons of great looking cupcake recipes. Inspired by an earlier blog movement, Peanut Butter Pie for Mikey, I decided to whip up a batch of cupcakes in honor of Annie's dad. I was stumped about which recipe to choose since I don't actually know Annie or her family, so I finally decided just to pick one that looked good to me. Hopefully her dad would have liked it too!

Fauxstess Cupcakes
recipe from Annie's Eats

for the cupcakes
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons cake flour
1/3 cup cocoa powder
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/8 teaspoon salt
2 large eggs, separated and at room temp
1/3 cup canola oil
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
2 tablespoons water

for the filling
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
3/4 cup marshmallow fluff (store-bought or homemade)
1 1/2 tablespoons heavy cream

for the frosting
1/4 cup heavy cream
4 oz bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped
1 tablespoon unsalted butter, softened

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly coat wells of a muffin tin.

In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Set aside..

In another bowl, beat together egg yolks, canola oil, 1/2 cup sugar and water until well combined. Add the dry ingredients and mix until just combined. Set aside.

In the bowl of a mixer, beat egg whites at high speed until soft peaks form. Slowly add remaining 2 tablespoons of sugar and continue to beat until stiff and glossy. Add 1/4 of the egg white mixture into the batter and mix to combine. Add remaining egg white mixture and gently fold together until no streaks remain.

Evenly divide the mixture into 8 or 9 cupcake wells. Bake until the cupcakes spring back (i.e. do not leave an indention) when lightly touched in the center, about 13-16 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to cool completely on a wire rack.

Meanwhile, make the filling. In a medium bowl, beat together the butter, powdered sugar, marshmallow fluff and heavy cream. Reserve 1/2 cup of the filling and transfer the rest to a pastry bag fitted with a 1/4-inch round tip.

Gently insert the tip of the pastry bag about 1/2-inch deep into the top of each cupcake and lightly squeeze in some filling.

For the frosting, heat cream over medium heat in a small saucepan until steaming (not boiling!), stirring constantly. Remove from heat and add chopped chocolate. Let stand for 5 minutes. Add butter and stir until smooth. Transfer to a small bowl and dip the top of each cupcake in the frosting to thoroughly coat. Spoon reserved filling into a pastry bag fitted with a very small plain tip and pipe curlicues across the center of each cupcake. Refrigerate the cupcakes for 10 minutes to set the frosting.

And then share them with the ones you love!

Big Bite!


Weekly Meal Plan - December 4th thru December 10th

Here is the menu that I have planned for the week!

Creamy Lemon Tortellini Bake with Spinach, Roasted Broccoli, Garlic Bread

Chicken Enchilada Soup, Guacamole, Tortilla Chips

Sloppy Cubano Sandwiches, Sweet Potato Fries, Fresh Fruit

Chicken Stuffed with Goat Cheese, Arugula, Artichoke Hearts & Lemon, Red Wine Spaghetti


Creamy Chicken Taquitos

>> Thursday, December 1, 2011

Originally I had planned to make these taquitos and make a few changes to the recipe. But the more I thought about it, I realized how ambivalent I was feeling about them. While I love bacon, I was a little on the fence about whether or not I wanted bacon in my taquitos...So I decided to use the taquito recipe that I've used several times in the past and always enjoyed. Why mess with a good thing, right?

These taquitos are nothing like the fried-minuscule-virtually-tasteless-things-that-more-closely-resemble-cardboard-than-food you can find in the frozen foods section of your grocery store. These are creamy, crunchy, tasty bites of deliciousness that everyone - including Finley - loves!

It's also important to note that unbaked these freeze really well!

Creamy Chicken Taquitos
adapted from Our Best Bites

3 oz cream cheese, softened
4 oz sharp cheddar cheese, freshly grated
4 oz sour cream
1/4 cup chipotle salsa (feel free to substitute your favorite salsa)
1/4 cup cilantro leaves, chopped
2 green onions, sliced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon onion powder
1/2 teaspoon Mexican oregano
1 teaspoon chili powder
2 large chicken breasts, cooked and shredded
12 flour tortillas
cooking spray

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a large bowl, mix together cream cheese, cheddar cheese, sour cream, salsa, cilantro, green onions, garlic,cumin, onion powder, oregano and chili powder. Stir until well combined and then stir in chicken.

Spoon 2-3 tablespoons of the chicken mixture on each tortilla and roll up as tightly as you can. Place seam side down on a cookie sheet and repeat with remaining tortillas. Lightly spray each tortilla with nonstick cooking spray. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until the ends of the tortillas turn golden brown.

Serve with extra salsa, guacamole or this dipping sauce. (I made a simple sauce of equal parts guacamole and sour cream plus a squeeze of lime juice, a dash of chili powder, and a dash of cumin.)


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