Monday, July 26, 2010

Southwestern Hashbrown Bake

Like a lot of people, for the past year or so, we've been observing Meatless Monday. Every Monday night--although we sometimes have to bump it to Tuesday or Wednesday--we have a meatless entree for dinner. At first, I thought it was a "no sweat" kind of thing and that surely we had enough tried and trues that were already meatless. Pasta, pizza, breakfast favorites...but we quickly ran out of ideas and I realized that I was going to have to actually look for meatless recipes. So I'm always on the look-out for a good vegetarian meal. Imagine my surprise when I found one hiding in a weird little free cookbook my mom grabbed at the supermarket! With black beans, cheese, hashbrowns, and eggs, it sounded like something everyone in the family would love. And they did! This was a definite crowd-pleaser, and one that will now be thrown into our regular Meatless Monday rotation.

Southwestern Hashbrown Bake

1 20-oz bag frozen hashbrowns, thawed
1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 can corn, drained
1 can diced green chilis, drained
8 large eggs
1/2 cup milk
2 cups shredded monterey jack cheese
salt and pepper
3 Tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro

Spray a 9x13" pan and preheat the oven to 350. Spread half of the hashbrowns in the bottom of the pan. Top with black beans, corn, green chilis, and 1 cup of cheese. Top with remaining hashbrowns. In a medium bowl, combine milk and eggs, and pour over casserole. Sprinkle generously with salt and pepper. Bake for 45 minutes until top is golden and the center is set. Top with remaining 1 cup of cheese and bake 5 minutes more. Remove from oven and let sit for 5 minutes before slicing. Top with cilantro. Serve with salsa.
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Sunday, July 11, 2010

Sweet Melissa Sundays: Sour Cherry and Almond Biscotti

I have to apologize for my long absence from this space. Our computer has been pretty diseased for several months now, and it finally did the unforgivable a few weeks ago: it would not let us access the internet. So on Wednesday, I finally backed up all of our important files and returned it to its factory settings. Now let's just keep our fingers crossed that it can avoid contracting any deadly viruses the second time around!

I consider myself a soft, chewy cookie devotee; I always prefer underbaked cookies to overbaked ones. But I do enjoy a good, crunchy biscotti dipped in ice-cold milk now and then. Or several times a day for a week straight, as was the case with this delicious recipe from The Sweet Melissa Baking Book. I doubled the deliciousness so that I could share them with friends, but I only gave away 10 and ate the rest pretty much single-handedly! Sure, the kids ate a few, but the rest was all me. And once you try them, you won't blame me. A smooth, pleasant vanilla crunch surrounding tart, ever-so-slightly chewy dried cherries and tasty bits of almonds. Truly addicting!

Thanks to Tracey of Made by Tray Tray for choosing this fantastic recipe, which she has graciously posted on her blog HERE.
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