Cheesy Spinach and Green Chile Enchiladas

Cheesy Spinach and Green Chile Enchiladas

Remember how I hatched a plot to eat greens at every meal?

Yeah…desserts kind of got in the way of that healthy plan. But you know, Rome wasn’t built in a day, and I am still trying to focus on the greenery as much as possible!

So this month for the Secret Recipe Club challenge, I decided to take a recipe for green chile enchiladas—which sounded heavenly—and green them up!

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Shrimp Tostadas

Shrimp TostadaThis is just the kind of quick meal I love to throw together when I’ve been having a busy day and I want to get dinner on the table without a lot of fuss.

A tostada is kind of like a taco salad that you pick up and eat with your hands. It can be gloriously messy, but let’s just call that an eating experience, okay? I love the spiced shrimp with a kick of lime. I love the mountain of veggies and cheese piled on top.

Bring a napkin and a fork, and dig in.

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Homemade Taco Seasoning

Taco Seasoning Mix

Have you ever made your own taco seasoning?

It’s kind of glorious.

Yes, it’s true: I have a penchant for making things from scratch that I could easily have bought in the store…but in this case, I really do think it’s worth it. Not only will you avoid totally unnecessary ingredients, like gums and gluten, but you if you make your own taco seasoning, you can customize the flavors and spice level!

Plus, your friends will be impressed. And isn’t it a beautiful thing when someone compliments your cooking (and you can brag that you even made the taco seasoning yourself)?

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Fish Tacos with Chipotle Mayo and Coleslaw

Fish Tacos with Chipotle Mayo and Coleslaw

I have long been on a quest for the perfect fish taco to make at home: something spicy and tangy and crunchy and earthy that makes me lick my fingers and go back for more. And let me tell you, I have really had some fish taco failures at home—there are so many different recipes to be found, so many marinades and toppings, so many ideas about what makes a good taco! And the truth is that the basic, classic ingredients that make up a fish taco, white fish and coleslaw, can be quite bland.

I am forever ordering fish tacos in restaurants so I can examine them and make mental notes. (Note to self: do not drop an enormous chunk of fried fish inside a tortilla, top it with three shreds of cabbage, and call it a taco. Yuck.)

But Sarah and I were determined to get it right! I think this recipe is a winner, a taco I would make again and again. The coleslaw is sharp and limey, the chipotle mayo adds just the right amount of heat, and the fish is flaky and well seasoned. Taco heaven!

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Slow-Cooker Black Bean Burritos

Black Bean Ragout

Do you know what mothers of newborns need?

(Aside from more sleep, looser clothing, and a cadre of friends who volunteer to bring them food for several weeks—thank you friends!!)

Mothers of newborns need meals that require almost no effort to put on the table. Things that basically cook themselves while we attempt to entertain rambunctious 2-year-olds and nurse our handsy infants for (seemingly) hours, simultaneously.

New moms, meet black bean ragout!

I have been making this simple black bean ragout for years…pretty much ever since the Smitten Kitchen cookbook arrived on my doorstep. It may not be the most beautiful dish (hello, soupy black water), but it is a quick and easy (and inexpensive…) life-saver. (Assuming I have my wits about me around noon or so to dump all the ingredients into the crockpot.)

I absolutely adore this black bean dish. It’s so simple and versatile! Dave and I have decided that our favorite way to eat these black beans is inside of burritos, but we also enjoy them crostini-style on garlicky bread and tossed into scrambled eggs with salsa for some extra protein in the morning! You could even potentially eat this as a soup. The possibilities are nearly endless.

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Squash Blossom Quesadillas

Squash Blossom Quesadillas

A while back, I mentioned that I am growing acorn squash this year! I have a little container vegetable garden on my porch, and almost everything I am growing is thriving.

Except, sadly, for my acorn squash. It all started out brilliantly: I had four plants that were green and leafy and growing like gangbusters. About a month ago, a crazy amount of blossoms started opening up and I got pretty excited for some squash to reveal itself. But…only two of the blossoms on all four of the plants sprouted squashes. After a while of not seeing any more little babies growing, I mentally threw up my hands and decided to start harvesting the blossoms. (Maybe that was my mistake? Who knows.)

Homegrown Acorn Squash BlossomsImmediately after harvesting my first bunch of blossoms, the plants started yellowing. I am not an experienced gardener, people. I was at a loss. Eventually I found that one of the vines was being eaten from within by a worm—and there went one of my two baby acorn squash (augh!). I still can’t figure out what’s wrong with the others.

So. Believe me when I tell you that these quesadillas were a labor of love. With these, I used up the last blossoms my poor, sad acorn squash seem like they are going to produce.

What a tasty way to go out!

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Spinach and Black Bean Enchiladas

Spinach and Black Bean Enchiladas

One of the unexpected perks of being a stay-at-home mom is getting to have near-weekly lunches with my foodie friend Sarah of Well Dined!

Often when we get together, we view it as an opportunity to make something complicated (I think we like to show off for each other), or something our husbands would never eat. But a few weeks ago, we were craving something simple, full of veggies, and…yes, let’s admit it, cheesy.

Sarah tracked down a recipe for veggie enchiladas, and boy am I glad she did! With a few quick alterations (who has patience for a slow cooker at lunch time?), we were on our way to a delicious lunch.

You can make these enchiladas for lunch or dinner. They are super quick to put together and go well with a salad!

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