May 26, 2020
Hi there Tuesday, and last one in May to say the least. Hope you had a fabulous Memorial Day weekend! Did you do anything fun? Anything different from the previous weekend? I, actually, headed to our family's beach house in Jersey for a few days. Weather was blah but the change of scenery was a nice break. There is something about that salt air - oh, and the weather was downright nippy at times - that can be very soothing! Now, I am chilling at home for the next week because they instilled the fear of quarantine in you if a non-resident. I am simply taking it one day at a time...but I am OVER IT!
With it being the last Tuesday of the month, today marks the last day of my "Taco & Tequila" series. Boo! I hope you have enjoyed! I know I have loved finding some super FUN recipes that are quick, convenient, and as healthy as possible (no, I am not advocating alcohol is healthy BUT I am trying to take the sugar/junk out of the equation).
I am going to be, totally, upfront here. The food porn pictures were less than desirable. I was working with not bougie cookware at my beach house and, well, yeah, it was just bad. Come on Janine, get your act together. I will be remaking this SOON for a prettier picture but, for now, it shall just remain the recipe!
The cocktail is a different story since I was able to craft this beauty in my own kitchen. So, let's start with that FIRST! Plus, it is smokin' and I think it deserves the spotlight this week, especially since I placed it in a super cute coupe glass in lieu of on the rocks with rimmed salt! People, I just needed to feel fancy in what was a really gloomy Memorial Day weekend.
Back to the cocktail. The jury is still out as to whether or not I am a fan of agave. Yes, it adds a little sweetness but, for someone who does not dig sweet, I think I just use it because I don't want to f-up the recipe. My verdict? If you need the touch of sweetness, add it. If you are cool with the taste of tequila, the smokiness of Mezcal (yes, this is what makes it smokin'), and the bitter, tartness of the lime, then no agave needed. And, as for the glass, I chose straight up. If you are like "hell no, that is too aggressive," rim a glass with salt (if your thing), add some ice, and pour in shaken ingredients (per the recipe instructions). See, customizable!
Courtesy of Percy Rodriguez of the Vine in New York City
2 oz Avion Blanco
.5 oz Buenbicho Mezcal
.75 oz lime juice
.5 oz agave nectar
Combine all ingredients over ice, shake, and strain over fresh ice in rocks glass that has been rimmed with salt. You can always go rogue like I did and serve it straight up, in a fancy coupe glass, with a larger than life lime!
Now for the main course! I did adapt this based on what I could get at the grocery store, and what I had on hand too. The Jersey grocery stores are not as robust and option-packed as I am used to at home! Would it be any surprise to you if I shared that this recipe was adapted from none other than the fabulous Siete Foods? Yes, I may be a bit obsessed.
Seriously, I had a handful of their tortillas I had brought with me, as well as some avocado and cheese that I wanted to use. Food picture(s) coming SOON! Did I mention I did just receive a white box before I left to help with all of my food photography? I know, a project while I am self-isolating for the 100th day! Ugh. Anywho, here you go! Super yummy, easy, and, of course, completely versatile too!
Chicken "Enchilada Casserole
Adapted by Siete Foods (and minus the enchilada, ha)
2 cups Shredded Chicken
1 Red Bell Pepper, diced
1 can (15 oz) of Black Beans
2 cans (12 oz) of Diced Tomatoes & Green Chilis
2 cups Shredded Cheese
5-6 Siete Foods Cassava Flour Tortillas
2-3 Avocados, sliced (for garnish)
Preheat oven to 325F.
In an oven-safe shallow dish layer diced tomatoes & green chilis (as base); then tortillas, red pepper, black beans, chicken, cheese, tortillas, chicken, and cheese.
Cover with aluminum foil and bake at 325F for 25-30 minutes.
Garnish with avocado!
Again, this is what I had on hand, and did not want to purchase a lot more items to bring home. Feel free to garnish with anything that strikes your fancy - more tomatoes, cilantro, olives, green onion WHATEVER! It was super yummy and it goes a LONG WAY!
Happy Tuesday! Once again, I hope you enjoyed my "Taco & Tequila" series. I know it helped fill a void with not being able to hang at some of my FAVORITE local Mexican restaurants! And, just in case you have missed the last few weeks, you can reference all of them below!