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monday meals

If you are responsible of doing the cooking at your house you know there are days when you just don’t feel like expending a lot of effort to make dinner. These days are when you tend to fall back on your standby meals.

I am convinced that every home has a couple of standby meals that they know they can throw together when they don’t want to worry too much about cooking. This is one of those standby recipes in our house. It takes 5 hours but it is a set it and forget it kind of meal. Almost anyone who comes over and eats this one with us ends up adding it to their arsenal.

Ingredients

2-3 FROZEN Chicken Breasts
~28oz Salsa (I use Pace Picante)
1 Can Black Beans (drained)
1 Can Whole Kernel Corn (drained)
8oz Package of Cream Cheese
Cooked Brown Rice

Directions

Mix the salsa, corn, and black beans in a crock pot. Place the chicken breasts in the crock pot and submerge them in the salsa mixture. Set the crock pot on high for 4.5 hours.

After 4.5 hours pull the chicken out and shred it using two forks. Place the shredded chicken back into the crock pot. Cut the cream cheese into cubes and mix it into the crockpot. Cook it for an additional 30 minutes.

Stir the mix together and then serve it over the cooked rice.

Alternative Serving Options

The great thing about this chicken mix is it’s versatility. The once cooked the mix can be used for just about anything. We like to serve it over rice but you can use it for filling burritos, tacos, as a dip, and a nacho topping. Your options are only limited by your imagination.

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Unlike a lot of households out there I do a lot of the cooking in my family. It isn’t that my wife won’t, or can’t, it is just that I truly enjoy cooking. I have even, briefly, considered culinary school and a change of careers. It is just something I enjoy doing, chopping is somehow relaxing to me. I am a very simple cook, nothing complicated and most of the time nothing overly expensive.

Since this blog is supposed to be as much about suburban life as it is money I am going to periodically recipes we use quasi regularly that are cheap, easy, and fun.

Nachos

People don’t usually think about DIY nachos at home but it is crazy easy to make them yourself at home, and fun for you and the kiddos to eat too. After a long day no one wants to slave over the stove for hours, or hell even minutes. This recipe is done as fast as you can brown meat and melt cheese.

Ingredients

  • Tortilla Chips
  • 1 lb ground turkey
  • Taco Seasoning
  • 1 can black beans (drained)
  • Shredded cheese
  • 2-3 Roma Tomatoes (chopped)
  • Shredded lettuce
  • Sour Cream *optional
  • Green Onions (chopped ) *optional

Directions

Brown your turkey in a skillet then season according the directions on your seasoning packet. While the turkey is browning line a cookie sheet with your tortilla chips in a single layer. Chop your tomatoes and set them aside.  Just as the meat is approaching the end of the seasoning simmer time add your can of black beans to the skillet and continue to reduce until most of the liquid is gone. Set you broiler on to LOW.

Sprinkle the meat/bean mixture over your laid out nachos making sure you evenly distribute the yumminess across all of the chips (no one wants to eat a plain chip). Take your cheese and generously sprinkle it across the meat, beans, and chips.  Take the tray and put it in the oven relatively close, but not too close, to the broiler. Keep an eye on it and make sure your cheese is melting and the chips are starting to darken but not burn.

Remove the sheet from the oven, let it stand for a minute and then distribute your lettuce and tomatoes across the chips. If you want to you can also add sour cream and some chopped green onions at this point. Take the whole tray to the table and let everyone dig in.

Readers: Would you be interested in seeing more posts like this, probably not weekly but once or twice a month? There is a lot of tasty stuff stuck in my head.

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