my salsa

Cinco de Mayo is tomorrow.  Unfortunately, we won’t be able to go out and partake in the debauchery around the area as the hubs has school.  Eh!  But we, kind of, had our little Cinco de Mayo food fiesta this weekend.  I had some pork shoulder in the freezer that I wanted to use up since we’re moving soon and I haven’t gone grocery shopping for meat lately.  Plus I wasn’t in the mood for cuban pork or slow roasted adobo again, so I figured I’d make carnitas.  And I gave the hubs the option for burritos, tacos, or enchiladas.  He picked enchiladas.  I didn’t make my own enchilada sauce though.  I used the canned stuff.  Eh it was a quick fix since we were cleaning, well more like purging, all day.  Next time I think I’ll try Eva Longoria’s chicken enchilada recipe.  Since we were having pork, I opted to used the green chile enchilada sauce instead of the red chile sauce.  I was a bit skeptical about it but it turned out tasty.

CARNITAS GREEN CHILE ENCHILADAS
(wow what a mouth fool)

SLOW COOKER PORK CARNITAS

INGREDIENTS

1.5 lbs Pork Shoulder
1/2 tbsp Garlic Powder
1/2 tbsp Onion Powder
1 tsp Paprika
3/4 tsp Chili Powder
1/2 tsp Cumin
1/4 tsp Salt (you don’t want to add too much salt as the fat from the pork shoulder will flavor the meat plus you will be adding cheese and enchilada sauce to the meat)

DIRECTIONS

Put all the spices and seasonings into a bowl to combine.

Pat the pork dry and place the dry rub onto the pork.  Cover and marinade for several hours or overnight (I marinated my pork for an hour because I didn’t have time and it was still delicious, but I’m sure marinating it longer will be even better).

Heat skillet with oil.  When HOT, sear the pork on all sides to lock in the juices.  When brown, place into the slow cooker for 5 hours on low and 3 hours on high.

When done, remove the meat from the slow cooker and shred with forks.  Leave the fat from the carnitas in the slow cooker for assembly of enchiladas below.

ENCHILADAS

INGREDIENTS

Shredded Carnitas
Fat from the Carnitas (don’t knock it just yet)
1 can of Green Enchilada Sauce
Limes (optional)
1 small onion, diced
1 cup of shredded Mexican Blend or Cheddar or Queso Fresco
Tortillas

DIRECTIONS

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

To a baking pan, add 1/4 of the green enchilada sauce to the bottom.  Spread out and set aside.

Put the shredded carnitas in a bowl and add juice of limes and 1/4 of the green enchilada sauce.  Mix until all the ingredients are incorporated.

Put the fat from the carnitas and 1/4 of the can of green enchilada sauce into two shallow bowls.

Take a the tortilla and to soften dip into the fat from the carnitas (adding flavor here people!), then dip into the green enchilada sauce.  This is a method used in Eva Longoria’s enchiladas; however, she dips the tortillas in oil.  I’m just adding an extra layer of flavor.

Then add the shredded meat combination onto the tortilla, then add onions and cheese.  Roll up into a cigar and place the enchilada into the pan.  Repeat until the pan is full of enchiladas.

Then add the remainder of the enchilada sauce over the top of the dish.  Sprinkle on remainder of cheese.

Place into the oven for 10 minutes or until cheese is bubbling.  Let it sit for 5 minutes and enjoy with a Margarita or Michelada!

If you have leftover carnitas, you can make carnitas nachos with black bean mango salsa (black beans, diced mangos, cilantro, and lime juice) like I did for lunch.  I added tomatoes and avocados because I wanted more vegetables in my meal.  Plus cheese 😛

Here are some other Mexican fave’s you can enjoy during Cinco de Mayo…

Restaurant Style Chicken Nachos

Accompanied by some Guacamole or salsa (I SWEAR by Pioneer Woman’s restaurant style salsa.  I’m NEVER EVER buying salsa again.  I’ve used this recipe for the last year and a half!)

Tequila Lime Chicken, also another Pioneer Woman favorite

Pair it with some guacamole or pico de gallo, another Pioneer Woman favorite

And some Mexican Corn, Elote

Want something to warm you up (although it is May)?   How about some Tortilla Soup?

Don’t want soup to warm you up?  How about some Chile Verde?

My inspiration for the title of the post is Cinco De Mayo and of course a snippet from D-12’s My Band video, where Eminem starts singing My Salsa at the very end.  HILARIOUS. And just for the fun of it forward to minute 5:06.

Enjoy your Cinco De Mayo!  Drink responsibly and don’t drink and drive.  Salud!

fake it

Last week, after my root canal, I couldn’t really eat hard food, so I was limited to soup.  I purchased Trade Joe’s Tomato and Red Pepper soup and had some leftover, but I didn’t want to have yet another Tomato and Red Pepper with a grilled cheese sandwich AGAIN.

I had some red peppers and grape tomatoes in the refrigerator/sitting out, so I thought why not tortilla soup (chicken less).  I had avocado and tortilla chips to accompany the soup.  I vaguely remembered what was included in tortilla soup so I went off of that.

TOMATO TORTILLA SOUP

INGREDIENTS

1/2 cup Trader Joe’s Organic Tomato and Roasted Red Pepper Soup (Low Sodium)
1/2 cup Trader Joe’s Organic Low Sodium Chicken Broth (or vegetable broth if you’d like this as a vegetarian meal)
1/8 cup chopped onions
1 clove garlic, minced
1 tsp cumin
6 grape tomatoes, quartered
1/8 cup chopped red bell pepper
1/8 cup whole corn kernels (I used frozen)
1/4 rotisserie chicken (if you have, if not that’s fine.  I made this without chicken)
2 tbsp lime juice
cilantro, chopped
avocado, sliced
crushed tortilla chips
sour cream
colby jack cheese

DIRECTIONS

Heat a sauce pan with a little bit of oil and cook onions until translucent.  Add garlic when onions become translucent.  When garlic becomes fragrant (about 30 seconds), add red bell pepper.  Cook the peppers until tender.  Add the tomatoes and saute for a minute.

Add the chicken broth and tomato and roasted red pepper soup into the sauce pan.  Add the cumin.   Bring to boil so that the flavors can marry.  Taste the soup and add lime juice to taste.  You can add salt and pepper or lime juice and cumin as necessary (even some oregano if you need to).  Add the corn kernels.

Get your soup bowl ready.  If using chicken, add the chicken into the bowl.  Ladle the soup into the bowl over the chicken.  Add in avocado and sprinkle the soup with cheese, sour cream (I used greek yogurt), cilantro and crushed tortilla chips.  Enjoy!

Since it’s completely cooled down ridiculously here in the bay area I’ve been making lots of soup/stewish meals to warm up especially at night.  Soup is all about some improve and whatever you want to put in there.  Gotta love easy, creative meals.