**THE LINK TO THE MARTHA STEWART POST IS NO LONGER ACTIVE, BUT THIS WEBSITE HAS SHARED THE EXACT RECIPES): 5/12/13
I don’t mind being in the kitchen. Good thing, I suppose, considering I spend hours a day there… making meals for my family, loading and unloading the dishwasher, eating, drinking, and even partying. Yes, as a mom, I still manage to have a little fun.
What I appreciate, however, are meals that are relatively simple to prepare, great for entertaining, tolerable for toddlers, and good for leftovers. Oh, and it has to be darn tasty too. Which is why I fell in love with this Tex-Mex menu from Everyday Food Magazine. Although the menu serves 8, plan on dinner for 4-6 and use the leftovers for tasty meals for the rest of the week. We made this on Saturday night and are still enjoying new ways to use the leftover ingredients. I’ll provide the initial recipes in this blog. Tomorrow, I’ll give you a few tips on how to use the leftovers in creative ways.
Oh, and if you’re making this for a dinner party, don’t sweat. It’s super simple to do in advance, with very little last minute prep.
Drinks: Um, margaritas of course!
Appetizer – Keep it simple with chips, store-bought salsa (I like the Chipotle Salsa from Trader Joe’s), and guacamole.
– Smoky Beef Tacos with three toppings (avocado-red onion relish, corn and tomato salsa, and cilantro-lime crema)
– Sauteed Portobella Mushroom strips*
–Cumin Rice and Beans
– Spicy Pineapple Salad (I know this is traitorous, but I used two cans of chunk pineapple in lieu of fresh. I hate dissecting a pineapple!)
Dessert – Mexican Snowballs (Although I’m providing the recipe for this, I’d recommend ditching the snowball effect. Just make the coconut topping and sprinkle over scooped ice cream. Way simpler and tastes the same!)
– Up to two days ahead: Make beef filling for tacos and refrigerate, make pineapple salad and refrigerate, make coconut topping for ice cream and store at room temp.
– One day ahead: Make snowballs (if using), make cilantro crema and corn salsa and refrigerate.
– 30 minutes ahead: Make rice and beans, mushrooms (if using), reheat pineapple salad, reheat beef filling for tacos, make avocado relish
– The menu recommends toasting tortillas just before serving. I just wrapped mine in foil and placed them in the oven at 350 degrees 30 min. ahead of time along with the beef topping and pineapple salad.
*Although not in the original Everyday Food menu, I sauteed some mushrooms for my veggie friends on the night we used this menu for a dinner party. I just sliced up 3 portobello caps, and sauteed them with 2 tb. olive oil, a dash of oregano and salt, and 1/2 tb. of adobo sauce from the chipotle and adobo used for the beef. Mushrooms are done when the liquid evaporates and edges begin to brown.
Check back tomorrow for ways to use the leftovers!