Cornbread

I don’t think there’s anything that goes better with chili than fresh cornbread. Sure you can buy a boxed mix or muffins but it’s so easy to make from scratch why bother with either of those? 

Husband and I had planned to go out and watch Sunday football this past weekend but were unable to due to unforseen circumstances. So we decided to make it a fun day inside instead. I served this bread with Sunday Aftenoon Chili.

Here’s an easy recipe that delivers a tall bread perfect for dipping or sopping up or just enjoying plain. It’s got that slightly sweet cornbread taste, isn’t gritty, and is delicious hot but also very tasty cold for left overs. The crust is beautifully crisp. It contains corn kernels which adds a nice texture and taste but you could just as easily leave them out or replace with something else-scallions, bacon pieces or anything else that you’d like. See those yummy kernels in there?

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Cornbread

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup cornmeal
  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted and cooled
  • 1/2 cup corn kernels

Instructions:

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 350.  Spray a 9×9 pyrex or similar baking dish with non-stick baking spray and set aside.
  2. In a large bowl whisk ingredients cornmeal through and including salt.
  3. In another bowl beat together the eggs, buttermilk and butter. When combined add the corn.
  4. Add the wet mixture to the dry and fold until just combined.
  5. Pour the batter into the prepared baking dish and bake for 30 minutes until a toothpick stuck into the center comes out clean.
  6. Remove the dish from the oven and let the cornbread rest for 5 minutes before serving.

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Recipe from Brother Jimmy’s BBQ cookbook.

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Red Bell Pepper & Sweet Corn Saute

Sweet yellow summer corn, crunchy red bell pepper, tangy onion and savory garlic all sautéed in a touch of butter and rounded out with just the tiniest hint of soy sauce.   This might just be one of the tastiest sides I’ve ever eaten. It’s so easy that someone who’s never cooked before could master it on the first try. It’s tasty enough to serve alongside with anything at the fanciest of restaurants or the most casual of tables—and it’s just really pretty to boot.

Note: the original recipe called for frozen corn but since delicious sweet corn is still available at the market I used that instead. Feel free to sub the frozen corn when fresh is not available.

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Red Bell Pepper & Sweet Corn Saute

Ingredients:

  • 1&1/2 tsp butter
  • 1/2 cup onion chopped small
  • 1 red bell pepper chopped small
  • 2 garlic cloves, smashed to a pulp
  • 3 ears fresh sweet corn, husked and kernels removed from cob
  • 1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tsp low-sodium soy sauce

Instructions:

  1. In a large non-stick skillet over medium-high heat melt the butter. Add the onion, red bell pepper and garlic and saute about 4 minutes. Add the corn and pepper and saute until the corn is cooked through and starting to soften.
  2. Remove from heat, add the soy sauce and stir to incorporate. Serve immediately.

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Adapted from Bell Pepper and Corn Saute Cooking Light October 2013.

Flash Chicken Fried Rice

So last week my Wednesday night went a bit like this: home from work at 5:40, walk dog, make a dinner in 20 minutes and get to a meeting by 6:30 that ended up lasting until 11:00.  Yeah it was that kind of day.  And night.  I had to think of something that I couldn’t mess up, something that I could make in a flash (snicker snicker), and that had a bunch of good stuff in it and that was tasty too.  Thankfully Husband made up 3 cups of rice for me the day before so it was all ready in the fridge.  The rest of the recipe is a mish-mosh of stuff that I had in the fridge and freezer. And it was perfect! It was delicious, filling but not FILLING, and had a nice balance of tastes and textures.   It’s more of a stir fry than a fried rice really-but who cares-it’s good and FAR better for you than stopping for take out.

Next time you’re going to run short on time give this recipe a try.  It took me about 18 minutes from chopping the onion to when it was in the container ready to go.

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Flash Chicken Fried Rice

 Ingredients:

  • 3 cups cooked day-old rice (I used white-feel free to use any other kind you’d like)*
  • 1 large chicken breast, trimmed of fat, boneless and skinless cut into small bite sized pieces
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 small yellow onion, cut into very thin strips
  • 2 cups frozen edamame
  • 2 cups frozen corn
  • 4 tbsp sesame oil
  • splash of fish sauce
  • a few tbsp low sodium soy sauce (to taste)
  • splash of hoisin sauce

Instructions:

  1. In one skillet over medium high heat warm 1 tbsp sesame oil. When hot add the chicken and cook until nicely browned and cooked  thoroughly. When cooked set aside. 
  2. While the chicken is cooking and in another pan over medium-high heat put 1 tbsp sesame oil. When hot add the onions and stir for a minute or two and then add the edamame and corn and cook until no longer frozen.  Add the fish sauce and stir for a minute or two. 
  3. In a 3rd and large pan (that can hold everything and be stirred) over high heat put the remaining sesame oil and, when hot, add the rice and stir to heat through.  Add the edamame mixture and cook until the rice and veggies are all mixed and the rice has a nice browned outside. 
  4. In the same pan used to cook the edimame mixture, over medium heat, crack the eggs, add a spoonful of the rice mixture and mix quickly to cook completely.  Add the egg mixture to the rice then add the chicken to the rice, stir to combine and remove from heat. Add the soy and hoisin sauces and stir to combine. Serve.

I admit I used a bunch of pans while throwing this together. I’m sure if I had more time I could’ve figured out how to use less–but my purpose was to make a great dish fast, not avoid dirtying dishes. 

This recipe makes quite a bit. I took one container with me to the meeting, had some for lunch the next day and still had a bit left over. I’d say about 4.5-5 cups total.

I think that this would also be great with some bell pepper strips, some snow peas etc…add at will-veggies are good for you!

*if you don’t have pre-made rice it will take that much longer to make this dish.

Santa Fe Soup

Winner winner chicken dinner!! Not only is this chili-like soup very delicious it’s a SNAP to make!! The ingredients are similar to chili but the liquid is much thinner.  Feel free to switch other beans in or use turkey. This makes  4 quarts so, in my house, enough for 2 frozen containers and 3 containers for the next few days for lunch or dinner.  I think this would also be excellent with crushed tortilla chips on top or used to scoop out the soup. So versatile!! I will be making this all fall and winter!!

Santa Fe Soup

Ingredients:

  • 2 lbs. ground beef or turkey
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 1 oz package ranch-stype dressing mix
  • 2 1&1/4 oz packages taco seasoning mix
  • 1 16oz can black beans, undrained
  • 1 16oz can kidney beans, undrained
  • 1 16oz can pinto beans, undrained
  • 1 15 oz can crushed tomatoes, undrained
  • 1 small can green chilis
  • 2 16oz cans yellow and white corn undrained
  • 2 cups water
  • Garnish: sour cream, grated sharp cheddar (not pre grated as it won’t melt properly), sliced green onions

Instructions: (I said it was really easy didn’t I? 1 step)

  1. Cook meat and onion together in a large stock pot until meat is browned and onion is soft. Stir in ranch dressing mix, taco seasoning into meat and stir to combine. Add remaining ingredients with juices from all. Add water. Simmer for 2 hours.  If mixture is too thick gradually add additional water to desired thickness. Garnish with sour cream and/or cheese and/or sliced green onions.

Makes 4 quarts. Needs to simmer for 2 hours (but it’s worth it I promise!!)

Adapted from Recipies Worth Sharing cookbook. This is a GREAT book-all of the recipies are from various community cookbooks from all over the country. This particular recipe is from the community cookbook Food for Thought from Junior League of Birmingham, Inc.  Burmingham, Alabama.

Corn Salsa with Lime

Wow! This salsa was delicious!! Light, cool and super flavorful!! A little sweet, a little tangy, a little spicy! It’s great on it’s own as a side or in the beef tacos I made with it.

Corn Salsa with Lime

Corn Salsa with Lime

Ingredients:

  • 4 cups (20 oz) cooked sweet yellow corn (either fresh or frozen)
  • 2 vine ripe tomatoes, diced
  • 1/2 red onion, diced
  • 1 scallion, diced
  • 1-2 jalapeños, diced (remove seeds unless you like it really spicy)
  • 2 tbsp chopped cilantro
  • 1 1/2 limes, juice of
  • chipotle chili powder, to taste
  • salt and fresh pepper to taste

Directions:

Combine all the ingredients and refrigerate for about an hour. Makes about 6 cups.

From Gina at Skinnytaste

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