Tag Archives: cornmeal

Tamale Chicken Potpies

I’ve got more work travel coming up so I figured I better try to get a post or two in while I can. It’s amazing how quickly time flies when you are traveling. Doesn’t it seem that way when you are on vacation? You want to stop time but it just goes by too fast. Next thing you know, you are back at work. Traveling for work doesn’t always seem to go by so quick but then you wake up one day and all of the sudden realize the summer is almost over. How does this happen? I haven’t had a vacation all summer and I’m dying for some time off. Until then, I’ll just keep making some comfort food like this Tamale Chicken Potpies to help soothe my soul until I can sit by a beach somewhere with a book.

Ground chicken and onion are livened up with some cumin and chile powder before being mixed with some spicy diced tomatoes, tomato sauce, zucchini, and corn. The whole mixture simmers together and is spooned into ramekins (you could make this in one big dish too) where it’s topped with a creamy cornmeal mixture that’s made even better with some cheese. A short trip to the oven gets these little treats golden brown and perfectly bubbly. I love meals like this that are already portion controlled for me. The great thing about this recipe is that the chicken mixture is good enough alone. I had a little bit left over and warmed it up for a quick lunch one day. A perfect little meal. Maybe I can’t jet off to Mexico for some tamales, but I can close my eyes and pretend, right?

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Preheat oven to 400°F. Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add oil to pan; swirl to coat. Add onion; sauté 3 minutes. Add chicken; cook 3 minutes, stirring to crumble. Stir in cumin, chili powder, and 1/4 teaspoon salt; cook 1 minute.

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Add zucchini, corn, tomatoes, and tomato sauce; bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer 8 minutes, stirring occasionally. Divide chicken mixture evenly among 4 (10-ounce) ramekins coated with cooking spray. Place ramekins on a jelly-roll pan.

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Place remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt, cornmeal, and 1/2 cup water in a medium bowl, stirring to combine. Bring remaining 1 cup water to a boil in a medium saucepan. Gradually add cornmeal mixture to pan; cook 3 minutes or until thickened, stirring frequently. Stir in 2 ounces cheese.

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Divide cornmeal mixture evenly among ramekins. Sprinkle evenly with remaining 1 ounce cheese.

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Bake at 400°F for 15 minutes or until light golden brown.

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Additions: None

Omissions: None

Substitutions: None

Overall Rating: Love It

Source: Cooking Light magazine

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Herbed Corn Muffins

So what do you do when your Thanksgiving leftovers are all gone but yet you still have leftover ingredients in your fridge? Leftovers from leftovers? Ugh! This happens to me all the time when I’m cooking. Really, unless you are making a parsley pesto, who ever needs more than a few tablespoons of parsley? Yet you can only get a big bushel in the grocery store. I hate throwing out herbs but it happens all the time. I’m sorry. I hate to say it, but it’s true. I refused to do it this time and sat down specifically looking for a recipe that I could use these herbs in. Thank goodness for these Herbed Corn Muffins.

Cornmeal batter made with buttermilk (also a leftover in my fridge that I never use up) gets a fresh kicky spirit from three leftovers in my produce drawer: thyme, parsley, and scallions. Oh, and some pecorino cheese! Talk about a perfect use for those random Thanksgiving hangers-on. Considering I always have baking items on hand (for when that cookie dough breakdown occurs), muffins are an easy way to use up leftover herbs because not only are they really easy and quick to make, they freeze so well. You can bake them and put them away for when you want them the next time you make soup or chili. And these muffins have such an amazing flavor from the cheese and herbs, you’ll be so happy that you made them now and have them later. It’s thyme to bake those herbs away, friends. Sorry…I had to. 🙂

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Preheat oven to 400°F. Combine buttermilk, olive oil, and egg; stir well with a whisk. Weigh or lightly spoon flour into a dry measuring cup; level with a knife. Combine flour, cornmeal, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt, pepper, and pecorino Romano cheese in a medium bowl, stirring well with a whisk.

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Make a well in center of flour mixture. Add milk mixture, and stir just until moist.

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Gently stir in green onions, parsley, and thyme.

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Spoon into 12 muffin cups coated with cooking spray.

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Bake at 400°F for 13 minutes.

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Additions: None

Omissions: None

Substitutions: None

Overall Rating: Love It

Source: Cooking Light magazine

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