Monday, May 10, 2010

Wednesday: La Bamba Casserole

 This is such an easy meal and has turned into one of our weeknight favorites. We served this Cooking Light casserole to some of our friends for Cinco De Mayo, paired it with a yummy strawberry spinach salad and cornbread muffins! YUM! The kids gobbled it right up. Anybody have a good homemade cornbread recipe? I would love to try it! Leave a comment below this post.

Casserole Recipe
6 servings

  1 (4oz) can whole green chiles, drained (we use the mild kind)

1 lb ground turkey breast

1 cup chopped onion
2 tsp chili powder
1/2 tsp ground cumin
1/4 tsp salt
2 garlic cloves
1 (10oz) can diced tomatoes and green chiles, drained (we use the plain diced tomatoes since they are less spicy)
2 cups frozen or fresh corn kernels, thawed
1 (16oz) fat-free refried beans (we used homemade, check out how below)
1 1/2 cups shredded extra-sharp Cheddar cheese
1 cup chopped tomato (optional)
1/2 cup chopped green onion (optional)

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. 
2. Cut chiles in half lengthwise and arrange on the bottom of a cooking sprayed 8-inch square pan. 
3. Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Coat with cooking spray. Add turkey and next 5 ingredients. Cook for 5 minutes, stirring to crumble. Add diced tomatoes and cook for another 5 minutes. 
4. Spoon turkey mixture over chiles. Add layer of corn. Top with beans, carefully spreading with the back of a wooden spoon. Sprinkle cheese on top. Stick in oven for 30 minutes. Let stand for 5 minutes. Top with tomatoes and green onions if desired.


Plan and Prep Ahead

Here are some helpful techniques to make life a little easier once dinner time hits. These tips will especially help those that work full-time and don't have a lot of time to prepare dinner.

~Make the turkey mixture ahead of time and keep in fridge until time of use.
~Grate cheese and place in fridge. 
~Thaw corn ahead of time and keep in fridge.
~Cut up tomato and green onions if using.


Who likes to CHANGE IT UP?

~Use a different refried bean like black beans instead of pinto.
~Replace monterrey jack cheese with cheddar. 

~Try ground beef or chicken instead of turkey. 
~Try a layer of chopped bell peppers instead of corn. 

Homemade Refried Beans

I talked about making your own beans in previous posts, so if you haven't already done that check it out here:  Homemade Beans
Get out one bag (should have 2 cups of beans in it) of frozen pinto beans from the freezer. Defrost in microwave. In a medium sized pan, mash the beans over medium heat. Add 1/4 cup salsa to pan and mix well. If the mixture is still a little thick, add some water to thin it out, 2 TB at a time. Use in recipe above!

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