Recipe—Chile Verde Stuffed Poblano Chiles

Chile Verde Stuffed Poblano Chiles

Trying to squeeze in another Mexican dish before Cinco de Mayo this Sunday. This recipe has got to be one of the best Mexican dishes I have ever made! Mind blowing good! The roasted poblanos have a mild roasted flavor that goes great with the green chile sauce and salty pork. Veggies stuffed with meat of any kind are great if you are watching your carbs or restricted to a gluten free diet. My only regret with making these was that there weren’t more! They were a little bit more work then most of my recipes but completely worth it. Take a break from the ordinary Mexican dish and try this extraordinary one.

Del Real Chile Verde

Note: My recipe calls for Del Real brand chile verde but you can use any shredded meat. I have been using Del Real products for several years because it is so quick, convenient, and affordable. 

INGREDIENTS
4 poblano (pasilla)chiles
16 oz package of Del Real Chile Verde
1 1/2 c pepper jack cheese, shredded
sour cream
3 tbsp fresh cilantro, chopped
2 tbsp red onion, diced
1 tbsp jalapeño, diced

STEPS
Note: If you have never before roasted peppers see this previous post on how to roast peppers for some additional guidance.

  • Prepare the chile verde per package instructions.
  • While the pork is cooking place the poblano chiles on a baking sheet.
  • Broil in the oven and turn every 5–7 minutes until all sides begin to blacken.
  • Remove from the oven and transfer the roasted peppers to a large bowl.
  • Cover the bowl with saran wrap and set aside for 10 minutes.
  • Set the oven to 350º.
  • While the peppers are sitting use a slotted spoon to remove the pork from the green chile sauce and transfer the meat to a cutting board.
  • Use a fork to shred the pork and place it back in the sauce and let it sit.
  • Gently peel the skin off the peppers.
  • Using a sharp knife make a slice down one side and carefully remove the majority of the seeds.
  • Holding the pepper in your hand place a handful of the pork inside the pepper and top off with a handful of the shredded cheese and fold the pepper around the filling.
  • Place the stuffed pepper in a large baking dish open side up and secure with a toothpick or two to help hold it closed.
  • Continue stuffing the remaining peppers.
  • Drizzle the peppers with half of the green chile sauce that the meat was in.
  • Bake the stuffed peppers in the oven for 15–20 minutes or until all the cheese is melted.
  • Place the peppers on a plate and garnish with the sour cream, cilantro, onion, and jalapeño.
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Cinco de Mayo Menu Ideas

CincoDeMayo

Time to bust out your sombrero, and crank up the mariachi music, Cinco de Mayo is just around the corner! If you are looking to throw a fiesta, or even just cook a festive dinner for the fam, I have some awesome Cinco de Mayo menu ideas for you.  I hope you take the day to kick back, relax, enjoy a margarita (or three), and celebrate this Mexican holiday. ¡Feliz Cinco de Mayo!

Refreshing Adult Beverages

Blended Mango Margaritas

Blended Mango Margarita

Grapefruit Margaritas on the Rocks

Grapefruit Margarita on the Rocks

Let’s Get this Fiesta Started!

DivaDiCucina_ShrimpCups

Shrimp Taco Cups With Creamy Cilantro Lime Sauce

DivaDiCocina_MangoSalsa

Mango Salsa

DivaDiCucina_QuesoFundido

Queso Fundido

Chubby Chicken Taquitos

Chubby Chicken Taquitos

Main Courses

DivaDiCucina_ShrimpTacos

Shrimp Tacos

DivaDiCucina_CheesyMexicanChicken

Cheesy Mexican Chicken

Jalapeño Cheddar Chicken Burgers

Jalapeño Cheddar Chicken Burger With Guacamole

DivaDiCucina_ShreddedBeefTacos

Crock-Pot Shredded Beef Tacos

DivaDiCucina_ChickenEnchiladas

Green Chile Chicken Enchiladas

DivaDiCucina_SweetPotatoBurritos

Sweet Potato Burritos

DivaDiCucina_ShrimpEnchiladas

Shrimp Enchiladas with Jalapeño Cream Sauce

Tasty Extras

Mexican Red Rice

Mexican Red Rice (Arroz Rojo)

DivaDiCucina_ChickenEnchiladaSoup

Crock-Pot Chicken Enchilada Soup

Mexican Grilled Corn on the Cob

Mexican Corn on the Cob

DivaDiCucina_JalapenoCornbreadMuffins

Jalapeño Cheddar Corn Bread Muffins

For the Sweet Tooth

DivaDiCucina_PinaColadaPie

Piña Colada Pie With Drunken Rum Sauce

Recipe—Mexican Grilled Corn on the Cob

Mexican Grilled Corn on the Cob

When planning out dinner menus I find it challenging to come up with Mexican side dishes beyond the typical beans and rice. And besides, when I am watching my carbs beans and rice just don’t work for me. I stumbled upon a recipe for Mexican grilled corn on Pinterest a few months back and have been meaning to try it. Boy am I happy I did! It was delicious! And by delicious I mean, the best corn on the cob I have ever eaten. While I normally just cover my ear of corn with butter and salt this was a welcomed change. The sour cream gave the corn a nice creaminess and the flavors of the smoky chili powder and zest of lime really fired up my taste buds. Sour cream has less than a third of the calories that butter does, so this corn not only tasted awesome, but it is also way healthy! Low calorie, low carb, and tastes amazing! Win, win, and win!

Note: If you want to try this recipe but don’t feel like firing up the grill, you can boil the corn. To boil corn, place the shucked corncobs in a large pot of boiling water and cover it. Cook for 4–6 minutes. Remove the corn from the water with tongs and continue seasoning by following the last 3 steps.

INGREDIENTS
4 ears of corn
1/2 c sour cream
chili powder
salt
pepper
4 lime wedges

STEPS

  • Cut of both ends of the corn so that the cob is exposed on one end and most of the stalk cut gone from the other, leaving the husk on.
  • Fill your sink or a large pot with water.
  • Soak the corn in the water for 15 minutes. (This allows some water to get inside so that the corn steams while on the hot grill, and also makes the husks wet so that they don’t catch fire.)
  • While the corn is soaking, preheat the grille to 350º.
  • Remove the corn from the water and shake off most of the moisture.
  • Cook the corn over direct heat for 15–20 minutes, making sure to turn every 5 minutes.
  • Remove the corn from the grille.
  • Carefully shuck the corn, remove all of the husks and corn silk. (I use an oven mitt to grasp one end to keep from burning my hands.)
  • Using your fingers or a butter knife spread a thin layer of sour cream all over the entire cob.
  • Sprinkle the corncob with the chili powder, salt, and pepper.
  • Spritz with fresh squeezed limejuice.
  • Devour!

Recipe adapted from Ezra Pound Cake.

Recipe—Blended Mango Margaritas

Blended Mango Margaritas

It may technically be spring, but this diva is ready for summer (and Cinco de Mayo)! With the warmer months quickly approaching, there is no better way to beat the heat than with a homemade margarita. Until recently, I was a margarita purist. I rarely deviated from the traditional lime margarita, on the rocks, no salt. This week I had a couple of overly ripe mangoes that we never got around to eating. I decided to be adventurous and make my first ever mango margaritas. Oh. My. God. I am officially hooked on mango margaritas! These were the BEST margaritas I have ever had in my life! They were the perfect treat after we got home from a hot hike in the sun. My husband is a beer guy and he happily drank two of these fabulous concoctions. They were the perfect balance of sweet and tangy, intoxicating and perfectly drinkable. The texture from the mangoes makes these super smooth and almost creamy. So go dust off your blender, and give these fabulous mango margaritas a try! Add some island music, giant sunglasses, perhaps a cabana boy, and a batch of these margaritas and you are ready to ring in summer!

Note: Makes four margaritas.

INGREDIENTS
2 c fresh mangoes, chopped (Frozen mangoes may be substituted. See note below.)
1/2 c lime juice
1 c silver tequila
1/2 c orange liquor (I prefer Grand Marnier or Cointreau)
2 tsp sugar
2 c ice

Note: You can substitute frozen mangoes for fresh. However, if you decide to do so, be sure to start with one cup of ice and add more as needed while blending.

GARNISH
4 lime slices (for garnish)
2 tbsp sugar (to put on the rim of the glass)

STEPS

  • In a large blender combine the mango, lime juice, tequila, triple sec, sugar, and ice.
  • Blend until smooth. Add additional ice if needed to reach desired consistency.
  • Use one of the limes to wet the edge of the glasses.
  • Place the 2 tablespoons of sugar on a small plate and dip the rim of the glass into the sugar to coat all the way around.
  • Pour the margaritas into the glasses and store any extra in the freezer until ready to drink.

Looking for more creative margarita recipes? Maybe you will love these!

Grapefruit Margaritas on the RocksGrapefruit Margaritas on the Rocks

Recipe—Oven Roasted Tri Tip with Veggies

Oven Roasted Tri Tip with Veggies

My family eats our share of beef. We almost always have tri tip in the house because it’s affordable, flavorful, low in fat, and it is the most diverse piece of beef around. You can grille it, smoke it, braise it, or in this case, roast it. Every time I have made this recipe the meat comes out really tender, flavorful, and juicy. This is a perfect all in one meal that will save you time and dishes.

Oven Roasted Tri Tip with Veggies

Note: If you have any leftover potatoes and veggies they are spectacular for breakfast! I just throw them in the skillet and fry them up for a few minutes. And if on the rare occasion you have leftover meat, dice that up and put them in a tortilla with scrambled eggs and the potatoes for a killer breakfast burrito.

INGREDIENTS
2 lb tri tip roast
2 tsp dried rosemary
2 tsp garlic, minced
1/2 tsp kosher salt
¼ tsp pepper
2–4 c red potatoes, diced
1 red bell pepper, diced
1 yellow bell pepper, diced
1 sweet onion, chopped into large pieces
5–7 cloves of garlic (optional)
2 tbsp olive oil

STEPS

  • Preheat oven to 425º.
  • In a small bowl combine rosemary, garlic, salt, and pepper.
  • Spread half of the seasoning mixture all over the roast.
  • Place the potatoes, bell peppers, onion, and whole garlic cloves (if you are using them) in a large bowl.
  • Drizzle the vegetables with the olive oil and add in the other half of the seasoning mixture. Toss to coat.
  • Place the roast fat side up in a large baking dish.
  • Arrange the vegetables around the roast.
  • Bake for 35–40 minutes for medium rare.
  • Allow roast to sit for 5–10 minutes and then transfer to a large cutting board. (Allowing your roast to sit helps the juices redistribute.)
  • Slice and serve alongside cooked veggies.

Recipe—Jalapeño Cheddar Chicken Burger with Guacamole

Jalapeño Cheddar Chicken Burgers

This chicken burger is the love child of Mexican and American cuisine. It is delicious. Or should I say was delicious, because my husband and I each devoured ours. The entire thing. This had to be the most flavor packed chicken burger I have ever had. Usually when I think of turkey or chicken burgers I think of dry flavorless patties. Not the case with these bad boys! These jalapeño cheddar chicken burgers were incredibly moist and definitely not short on flavor. If you are looking for a way to spruce up the average burger, or even to cut some calories give these burgers a try. They are definitely unique and unlike any chicken burger you have probably ever had before, the perfect burger to enjoy with a refreshing Corona on a warm summer day. Ahhhhhh yeaaahhhhh. That’s what I’m talking about.

Note: These can definitely be cooked on the barbeque. I used my skillet because ground chicken tends to stick easily due to the low fat content.

INGREDIENTS
1 lb ground chicken
1/2 c yellow onion, finely chopped
1/4 c fresh cilantro, finely chopped
2 tsp garlic, minced
2 tsp jalapeño, chopped
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp paprika
1/2 c shredded cheddar
kosher salt and pepper
2 tbsp olive oil
2–4 buns

FABULOUS TOPPINGS
guacamole
slices of cheddar cheese
lettuce
sliced tomatoes
sliced red onion

STEPS

  • Preheat oven to 350º.
  • Combine ground chicken, onion, cilantro, garlic, jalapeño, cumin, paprika, cheddar, salt, and pepper in a bowl.
  • Using your hands mix everything together.
  • Form the mixture into 2–4 patties depending on the size you want.
  • In a large skillet, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat.
  • Add the patties and cook for 5–7 minutes per side or until cooked through.
  • While the patties are cooking toast the buns in the oven or 4–5 minutes.
  • Place each patty on a bun and garnish with whatever your heart desires. (I would use all the garnishes I recommended if I were you.)

Recipe—Creamy Cucumber Dill Salad

Creamy Cucumber Dill Salad

Cucumbers are one of my all time favorite summer veggies. I just slice them up and eat them plain. There are also lots of other wonderful healthy ways to enjoy the fresh veggie. This is one of my new favorite ways to prepare cucumbers. The dressing makes your taste buds come to life. It is tangy and very refreshing. Perfect for a warm afternoon! This recipe pairs great with pretty much any protein and is a fabulous addition to your summer cookouts. You can whip this salad up super quick and it is incredibly healthy all around. Low cal, low carb, and delicious! What more could you want in a recipe?

INGREDIENTS
2 cucumbers, thinly sliced (peeled is optional)
1 red onion, thinly sliced
2 tbsp lemon juice
1 c plain Greek yogurt
1 tsp fresh dill, chopped
1/2 tsp sugar
salt and pepper to taste

STEPS

  • In a medium bowl combine the cucumbers and onions.
  • In a small bowl mix together the lemon juice, Greek yogurt, dill, sugar, salt, and pepper.
  • Pour the dressing over the cucumbers and toss to coat.
  • For a nice presentation sprinkle with a little extra chopped dill.
  • Place in the fridge and chill until ready to serve.

Recipe—Almond Poppy Seed Bread

Almond Poppy Seed Bread

There are several occasions throughout the year when I am scrambling to put together a brunch menu, Easter, Christmas, etc. One staple item I always have is some sort of breakfast loaf. I love making breakfast loaves because I can have them done the day before, giving me one less thing to worry about the morning I am entertaining. This glazed almond poppy seed loaf is a classic recipe. It is super simple (you literally throw all the ingredients in a bowl and mix) and goes with everything from a simple cup of joe, to a full brunch spread.

Note: This batter works great for almond poppy seed muffins too. Just follow the directions as written but use greased muffin pans instead of bread pans and bake for 18–23 minutes.

BREAD INGREDIENTS
3 c flour
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
3 eggs
1 1/4 c cooking oil
2 1/4 c sugar
1 1/2 c milk
2 tbsp poppy seeds
1 1/2 tsp almond extract
1 1/2 tsp vanilla

GLAZE INGREDIENTS
1/4 c butter, melted
1/2 tsp almond extract
1/2 tsp vanilla
1 tbsp water
1 1/2–2 c powdered sugar
1/2 c sliced almonds (optional)

STEPS

  • Preheat oven to 350º.
  • Mix all of the bread ingredients together.
  • Pour the batter into greased 2 loaf pans.
  • Bake for 50–60 minutes or until a toothpick when inserted comes out almost clean. (I like my bread moist so I pull it out when the toothpick still has a little bit of crumbly residue on it. A totally clean toothpick will mean a dryer loaf.)
  • After removing the loaves from the oven, place the sliced almonds on a baking sheet and roast them for 3 minutes or until they just start to turn a golden color.
  • Allow loaves to sit for 15 minutes after removing from the oven.
  • Gently remove loaves from pans and place on a cutting board or cooling rack to cool.
  • Once the bread has completely cooled, combine the melted butter, almond extract, vanilla, water, and powdered sugar in a bowl and whisk until smooth. (Start with 1 1/2 cups of powdered sugar and add more as needed to get desired consistency. I like mine slightly runny so it drips down the sides when drizzling over the bread.)
  • Drizzle the frosting over the bread and then immediately sprinkle with the roasted sliced almonds.

Happy National Grilled Cheese Day!

There is something truly wonderful about a perfectly toasted grilled cheese sandwich. Eating a grilled cheese takes me back to my childhood days. I have always been a lover of the ooey gooey cheesy sandwich. There is something absolutely perfect about the simplicity of cheese toasted between a couple of slices of buttered bread.

Today is a day to celebrate the all American sandwich enjoyed by people of all ages. Toasted bread with cheese has been around for ages. The classic version we know in the U.S. originated in the 1920s when sliced bread and American cheese was cheap and easily available. It was one of the more popular meals during the Great Depression for this very reason. Until the 1960s it was served as an open faced sandwich, a single slice of bread with cheese melted on top.

Grilled cheese sandwiches have come a long way with gourmet versions growing in popularity over the last several years. You can use a variety of meats, cheeses, and vegetables to make the ordinary grilled cheese, extraordinary.

Here are a couple of grownup versions of the American classic for you to try:

DivaDiCucina_PopperGrilledCheese

Jalapeno Popper Grilled Cheese

DivaDiCucina_FancyMan

Fancy Man Grilled Cheese

Whether you prefer a classic or a modern day version, today is still a day about grilled cheese. Wonderful, fabulous, grilled cheese.

Recipe—Crock-Pot Ranch Pork Chops

Crock-Pot Ranch Pork Chops

I don’t care if you are retired, a stay at home mom, a working individual, or even unemployed; everyone needs a quick, cheap, and easy dinner from time to time. When I find myself in this situation I go to my favorite kitchen appliance, my crock-pot. My crock-pot is freaking amazing. I toss in a couple simple ingredients before I go to work, I come home, and dinner is done. You rock my socks crock-pot! These pork chops come out super tender (practically falling apart) and the sauce is creamy and flavorful. If you are wondering what to serve them with I recommend some mashed potatoes or even white rice. Unfortunately the crock-pot isn’t much a multitasker so with this recipe you are on your own when it comes to side dishes.

Note: I make the sauce the night before and just keep it in the fridge. Then I have one less thing to do when I’m rushing around in the morning.

INGREDIENTS
4 thick cut boneless pork chops
fresh ground pepper
10.75 oz can cream of chicken soup
1 oz envelope dry ranch dressing mix
2 tsp garlic, minced
1/2 c water or chicken broth

STEPS

  • Season the pork chops with fresh ground pepper.
  • Place the pork chops in the bottom of a greased crock-pot.
  • In a medium mixing bowl whisk together the soup, ranch mix, garlic, and water.
  • Pour the sauce mixture over the top of the pork chops.
  • Cook on high for 4–5 hours or low for 6–7.
  • Transfer the pork chops to a serving dish or plate and using a whisk, stir the sauce in the crock-pot.
  • Ladle a small amount of the sauce over each pork chop.