Tag Archives: avocado

Baked Avocado Fries & a kicked up dipping sauce

Let the harvesting begin! This year we tried a couple of new crops in the garden; Eggplant and Brussels Sprouts. I did not realize that eggplants are pretty finicky, they need perfect soil to sun and water ratio. I garden but I am not a gardener. I really don’t have the time or the patience to cater to plants that need coddling. I have pretty good luck with most plants, though this year no zucchini; so sad!!! But you should see my cabbages and I have already canned a dozen jars of pickles from my cucumbers. Today I am going to try, for the first time mind you, to make my own sauerkraut.

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I planted the Brussels sprouts mainly because they look really cool; my guys were not thrilled because they knew if they grew, we would be eating them. I hate wasting food which is why I am making sauerkraut. We planted 6 cabbages and they were all HUGE, I gave a couple away to family but that still leaves more than we can eat in a sitting plus they all came at once. I really should learn how to stagger plantings I guess that would be the non-gardener part of me. Did I also mention that the plants are making a bunch of mini cabbages?

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SO CUTE!!! – that’s my husbands work trailer peaking thru the leaves

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we harvested all the broccoli, new shoots coming back!

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adorable, need to figure out when to harvest these baby’s

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more baby cabbages growing from when we harvested the huge one. See the butternut squash peaking out in the upper left corner, we are going to have a ton of those this fall!

To go along with my hate wasting food mantra I had some very ripe avocados that I needed to use up before they went bad. I didn’t want to make guacamole like I usually do. I had taken fish out and have always wanted to try making avocado fries. Fish and Chips with a healthier chip sounded kind of cool. They were baked not fried and had a little dipping sauce that wasn’t ketchup; we do love trying something a little different.

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The wine is for me!!!

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I put mine on my silpat – if you don’t have one get one!!!! You’ll thank me later…

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Baked Avocado Fries

1 avocado – sliced into fry lengths sized fries

1 cup flour

1 egg beaten

1 cup dried breadcrumbs

2 tbs grated Parmigiano Reggiano cheese

Kosher salt

Fresh cracked black pepper

Preheat oven to 450’

In 3 shallow bowls, I normally use a pie plates but these take out containers were just fine here. Flour in one, egg in another and bread crumbs in the third; season all with salt and pepper! Gently press avocado into the flour shaking off excess, dip into beaten egg and press into the bread crumbs. Place on a baking sheet once all placed, sprinkle with Parmigiano cheese. Bake in a preheated oven until cheese has melted and the fries are golden brown, about 15 minutes.

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Dipping sauce

3 tbs sour cream

2 tbs garlic powder

1 tbs tomatillo salsa – or use what you have on hand – I used salsa I had in the fridge

1 dash Sriracha or similar, or more to your liking

In a small bowl stir all ingredients together mixing thoroughly

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Mexican Pork Stew – easy and delicious

In cooking I truly believe that a recipe is just a place to start; use it more as a guideline than a rule. I have heard many people in my classes that only feel comfortable with following the recipe word for word. I do try to make a new recipe as written but more times than not I end up changing it, a little more of this, less of that, I’m not a mushroom fan so I have been known to grind them up, I probably shouldn’t have confessed that. Sometimes I change it for my families’ tastes; other times it is just a matter of finding what I can at my local grocery store. I would never, not try a recipe that sounded interesting to me just because I couldn’t find one particular ingredient, there are always exceptions to this rule but as far as flavorings go I feel you can use whatever floats your boat.

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Case in point a couple of years ago my sister-in-law was visiting for Christmas and while I was at work she put together her rendition of Mexican Pork Stew. She didn’t have her recipe on hand but had made it many times before so she headed out to our local grocery store.  It recall chuckling while she told me what was supposed to be in it versus what she found to substitute for the ingredients that she couldn’t find. Just recently she photocopied the page in her cookbook with the actual recipe.

Original version                               Adapted version

Canned tomatillos                               Salsa verde

Diced/seeded tomatoes                      Canned Diced tomatoes

Green hot chilies seeded                    Can diced green chilies

Since I had never had the “real” one and the one she made from my store was delicious I have made hers a few times and every time it gets eaten as a snack just heated up in a small bowl, made into a taco, and served over rice or noodle.

I hope you get a little adventurous and don’t shy away from a recipe just because there is something in it you are not a fan of, just substitute it for something you do like. Who knows you could come up with something even better than the original.

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Mexican Pork Stew – My version adapted from Debs’ which was adapted from San Francisco A la Carte cookbook

3 pound boneless pork cut into 2-inch cubes

2 tbs olive oil

1 large onion diced

3 cloves crushed garlic

1 14.5 ounce can diced tomatoes – I had some small tomatoes I needed to use so I seeded, chopped and added them

1 4.5 ounce can of green chilies

1 tsp dried oregano

1 tsp sugar

1 tsp cumin

Salt and Pepper to taste

2 chorizo sausages skinned, sliced browned

1 cup chicken broth

In a saute pan add the oil and brown the pork on all sides small batches at a time; careful not to over crowd, place your crock-pot near the stove and transfer the browned pork into the crock-pot. Brown the chorizo I placed all of these in the pan and watched to get some brown on them, add to the crock. If the pan is dry use a little more oil. Saute the onions for a couple of minutes; add the garlic and cook a little longer; careful not to brown the garlic. Add everything to the crock-pot; cover to about halfway up the pot with chicken stock. Cook on low all day or on high 4-5 hours.

Serve with a sprinkle of cheddar cheese and some sour cream.  Sliced avocado is also wonderful served on top. Great served over rice or pasta or served with mashed potatoes. Also great as a taco, be sure to use a slotted spoon to drain the liquid.  I also just love some in a small bowl with a sprinkle of shredded cheddar cheese and a dollop of sour cream.  endless possibilities.

Soup Season is here – Chicken Tortilla Soup

I am a huge lover of soup; it surprises me when I hear some people are not. I think of soup/chowder and stew as a warm hug in a bowl. There are endless possibilities you can combine to make a yummy pot of soup, you can add milk and/or cream for chowder, clear broth to make a light soup or combine cream and broth to make your light soup a little creamy like creamy tomato soup. I think I will make that today with the tomatoes from my garden.

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After a long day of Christmas shopping on Friday – Yup I said it; it was only for the “typical” PJ’s, socks etc. (I am going to try and spread out the money pain over a few months) items for the fam. While eating my grilled chicken sandwich I overheard the person sitting next to me ordering Chicken Tortilla Soup – So for the rest of the day all I wanted was a bowl Chicken Tortilla Soup.

Guess what I did when I got home; of course after hiding all the loot! It was a huge hit; my guys and I thoroughly enjoyed it. It comes together pretty quick and tastes great straight away; you know how some things taste better the next day; this one is d’lish now and if you happen to have some leftover for the next day I am sure it tastes just a great; we wouldn’t know!

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2 Tbs olive oil

1 medium onion diced

2 Tbs minced garlic

2-4 Jalapeno’s (depending on how spicy you want it) seeded and finely diced

6 cups chicken broth (homemade if you have it)

1 28 oz. can San Marzano peeled tomatoes–while pouring out the tomatoes squeeze them into the pot to help break them up.

1-2 cans black beans – rinsed and drained

2-3 boneless skinless chicken breasts

2 limes juiced

Kosher salt and fresh cracked black pepper

Cilantro leaves

1 flour tortilla grilled and cut into strips or use tortilla chips crumbled

1 avocado, pitted, sliced

1 cup shredded cheddar cheese

Dollop of sour cream

In a large saucepan heat the oil till warm, add the onions until they softened; about 3 minutes. Add garlic and jalapenos cook for another minute. Add broth, tomatoes and beans and bring to a boil. Lower heat to a simmer and add the chicken breast. Cook the chicken for about 20-25 minutes. Once chicken is cooked remove from the pot. When cool enough to handle; shred it and set aside. Add lime juice and the cilantro to the pot.  In a bowl add a mound of chicken. Ladle soup over chicken and with tortilla strips, avocado slices, cheese and sour cream. YUP hug in a bowl!!!