Tag Archives: Morgan’s

Mexican Chicken Casserole

This stuff is fresh, filling…and healthy! I got this one from Cooking Light (a staple in our house) and it is awesome. While it does require some hands-on time – it is nothing complicated. I am typically one that will pull a Sandra Lee every now and then and go with the store bought version of a certain ingredient (e.g. salsa) vs making it homemade (she calls this “Semi-Homemade”). Anyway, in this recipe, you will make homemade salsa to place in your Mexican “lasagna” – and it is SO worth it. And, if you’re like me and like your food a lil on the spicy side…I’d recommend some additional jalepenos, Cayenne pepper, or…my favorite, Louisiana hot sauce! Enjoy – Morg

The Recipe
Hands on time: 25 minutes
Total time: 1 hour and 10 mins (I think this is a lie or I’m not that good)

Salsa:
8 plum tomatoes, halved and seeded
3 garlic cloves, peeled and crushed (I use the kind out of the jar to make my life a little easier)
1 small onion, peeled and chopped
1 seeded jalepeno pepper, quartered (again, I’d use extra and…if you like lots of heat, you can skip the seeding process)
Cooking spray
1/3 cup chopped fresh cilantro
3 tablespoons fresh lime juice
1/8 teaspoon black pepper

Casserole:
1 cup chopped onion
1 cup fresh or frozen corn kernels
1 cup diced zucchini
1 cup chopped red bell pepper
3 cups shredded cooked chicken breast (I’d make this 4 cups, especially if you’re cooking for a man; Anthony’s big complaint was that there wasn’t enough “meat”)
1 tablespoon minced garlic
2 teaspoons chili powder
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 (10 ounce) can green chili enchilada sauce
1 (4-ounce) can chopped green chiles
12 (6-inch) corn tortillas
1 cup (4 ounces) shredding Monterey Jack cheese
1 cup (4 ounces) crumbled feta cheese

  1. Preheat broiler.
  2. To prepare salsa, combine first 4 ingredients on a baking sheet coated with cooking spray. Broil 20 minutes or until charred, stirring once. Remove from oven; cool slightly. Place tomato mixture in a food processor; add cilantro, lime juice, and pepper. Process until smooth. Set aside.
  3. Preheat oven to 350 degrees (where is the degrees sign on a computer?)
  4. To prepare casserole,  heat a large non-stick skillet over medium high heat. Lightly coat pan with cooking spray. Add 1 cup onion, corn, zucchini, and bell pepperr; saute 6 minutes or until tender. Add chicken and next 5 ingredients (through green chiles); saute 2 minutes or until thoroughly heated. Remove from heat.
  5. Spread 1/2 cup of salsa over the bottom of a 13X9-inch baking dish coated with cooking spray. Arrange half of tortillas over salsa. Spoon 2 cups chicken mixture evenly over toritllas. Top with 3/4 cup salsa. Sprinkle with 1/2 cup of each cheese. Repeat layers, start with remaining tortillas and ending with remaining cheeses. Bake at 250 degrees for 25 minutes until bubbly.

Yields: 8 servings. (330 calories per serving – but who’s counting?)

Note: the longer the salsa is allowed to sit, the more the flavors will meld. Make extra and use to enhance other dishes – or just serve with some warm tortilla chips!

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Filed under Chicken, Main Course, Mexican food

Bacon-Wrapped Jalapeno Bites

I think these are supposed to be called “poppers,” but that invokes visions of Applebee’s (and not in the good we’re-18-year-olds-with-fake-IDs-and-they-have-2-for-1s way). Morg made these for Morganthony’s Christmas party last year and they were so good I turned right around and made them for Sibling Game Night the next week. They are easy. In the good way.

15 jalapenos, sliced in half and deseeded
1 8 oz. container cream cheese
5 strips bacon, cut into thirds or halves (depends how much you want wrapped around each one)

  1. Preheat the oven to 375.
  2. Spoon cream cheese into jalapenos (enough to fill but not overstuffed).
  3. Wrap with bacon and bake for 20 minutes (or until bacon is fully cooked).

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Filed under Appetizers, Party food, Pork, Veggies

Filet Bites

This is another simple but yummy recipe from Morganthony’s Christmas Party 2K9. Morg really went above and beyond last year, probably because Tony’s obsession with Christmas requires we start celebrating early in November. That girl’s gonna make someone an excellent wife some day. April 16 to be exact.

Several filets (or another good cut of meat), cut into 1.5-inch cubes
1/4-1/2 stick of butter
salt and pepper to taste

  1. Brown the butter in a skillet. (If you’ve never made browned butter before, you basically melt it over medium-low heat and whisk until it turns a hazlenut color. If you burn it start over. Burned butter is the only kind of butter that sucks.)
  2. Cook salt-and-peppered steak in butter for a few minutes on each side stirring frequently (until medium-rare).
  3. Serve with toothpicks on the jolliest Christmas tray you can find. I serve these with a mayo-horseradish dipping sauce (2:1 ratio of mayo to horseradish), but these are great naked or with A-1. Sorry, but my inner redneck loves that stuff.

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Filed under Appetizers, Beef, Meat, Party food