Sunday, July 31, 2011

Puts-Hair-On-Your-Chest Salsa

So a couple of weeks ago, before my tomatoes were ripening in larger quantities, I had loads of peppers. The nice thing about peppers is that you can use them when they are immature (why did that statement make me think of junior high kids?). Anyway! Yes, almost all peppers will turn another color when they are ripe but they are still usable in many different ways. In fact, it is often desirable to use an green pepper as opposed to a fully ripe one.

Take my jalapeños. I prefer them green just as I do my Anaheim peppers, Anaheim peppers are just like the diced, roasted chillies that you buy in the little cans in the Mexican aisle at your grocery store. So coming across a recipe for jalapeño salsa pricked my interest. The bulk of this recipe is using peppers, not tomatoes or tomatillos. Great for when your tomato harvest isn't quite ready yet but you still want some fresh salsa. Here's my variation.

5 Jalapenos, roasted then seeded and chopped
3 Anaheim peppers, roasted then seeded and chopped
1/3 cup diced tomato
1 small red onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 cup chopped cilantro
Juice of one lime
Salt to taste

To roast the peppers, I simply grilled them on the grill over med-high heat, turning them as the blackened. I removed most of the blackened skin, took out the seeds and gave them a rough chop. Then I threw them into a food processor with the onion, garlic, tomato, cilantro, and lime juice. And let it whirl! Then I added salt to taste.

This salsa has the potential to put some hair on your chest (hence the name). But it's not an unbearable heat. And it all really depends on the heat of your peppers. Jalapeños are notorious for not having the same heat level across the board. If it ends up being too spicy, then stir it into some sour cream. Or make a queso dip with some melted cheese. I have the feeling that this would make an excellent base for an enchilada sauce - simply add it to a simple white sauce and poor it over some chicken enchiladas. If you try it, let me know how it turns out for you!

Monday, July 11, 2011

An Abbreviated Menu Plan

Why is this week short? Because we're going to a baseball game Friday night. Our supper will be courtesy of the of Mike's employer via the stadium. Gotta love free food!

So what have we been eating? I've tried some new recipes here and there. One winner was Grilled Honey Lime Chicken that came from one of the cookbooks that Mike gave me for my birthday. I'll be posting it after the menu plan. Another honey chicken grilled dinner that was a winner was: Yummy Honey Chicken Kabobs. While Mike enjoyed that one more than I did, it was still pretty good. Oh, and I made my first Chimichurri sauce this last week. Argentinian in essence, it really goes with a grilled beef steak (which is how we used it). But I can see it used in a numerous ways, including on fish. If you've got herbs out in your garden, give it a whirl! The recipe I used can be found here.

Monday: Zippy Summer Shrimp, Grilled Red Potatoes, & Salad
Tuesday: Crockpot Chicken, Rice Pilaf, and Dilled Peas
Wednesday: Sloppy Joes, Oven Fries, Veggies & Dip
Thursday: Hoisin Pork Stir Fry and Egg Rolls
Friday: Kernels Game!

and here is the recipe for the Honey Lime Chicken
from More Don't Panic Dinner's in the Freezer

4 boneless chicken breasts
1/2 cup fresh lime juice
1/2 cup olive oil
1/4 cup honey
1/4 cup fresh cilantro, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 teaspoons chopped jalapeño pepper

Mix together lime juice, olive oil, honey, cilantro, garlic, and jalapeno pepper. Place chicken breasts in freezer bag. Pour marinade over chicken breasts. Freeze.

On Serving Day. Thaw chicken completely. Grill over medium heat until chicken is tender and juices run clear. Great on salad or in a southwestern wrap!