Enchilada Sauce
4 dried chili peppers, crushed or 2 fresh chili peppers, sliced
3 T – 1 mini can tomato paste or a few crushed/diced tomatoes
1 T minced or diced onion
2 T olive oil
1 T vegetable stock
1 – 4 cups water
1 T Adobo seasoning
1 T garlic powder or 1 medium garlic clove, minced with plane grater
1 tsp each cayenne pepper, cumin, cilantro
1/2 tsp each oregano, salt

1. Over medium low heat in small saucepan, heat chili peppers in olive oil. Stir occasionally, and if using fresh chili peppers, mash a bit as they soften. Add onion and allow to heat for 5 – 10  minutes.

2. Add vegetable stock, tomatoes or tomato paste, 1 cup water, and seasonings. Continue to heat and stir for 10 – 15 minutes. If pressed for time, heat vegetables for enchilada filling in separate sauté pan.

3. Add more water until desired thickness is reached. Use for enchiladas and store extra in refrigerator for enhancing rice, tacos, or salsa.

1 can or cup White Beans, lightly mashed
1 1/2 cup Grated Cheddar Cheese
1 Green Pepper
1 small yellow Onion
1 – 2 cups Enchilada Sauce
Rice (optional)


1. Lightly coat square casserole dish with sauce. Add filling to tortilla (technically, it is good to use corn tortillas but I find flour tortillas easier to manipulate) in stripe down the center, and fold over both sides. Put fold-side-down in pan. Line up as many enchiladas in a row (5 or 6) until pan is full.

2. Pour sauce over enchiladas and sprinkle extra cheese on top.

3. Cover with foil and bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour, or 400 degrees for 1/2 hour. You can also soften peppers and onion in a sauté pan beforehand and reduce cooktime significantly-that way you will only have to wait for cheese to melt.

4. Garnish with Parsley

1 c Brown Rice
1 packet Sazon Goya
1/2 c Lentils
1/2 c Onion

1. Cook rice and lentils in rice cooker.

2. After 10 minutes, add diced onion and Sazon Goya. Mix.

3. Serve with enchiladas. If using rice for enchilada filling, start rice cooker before making the enchilada sauce.

Fresh Tortilla Chips
5 – 10 corn tortillas
2 – 3 T vegetable oil
sea salt

1. Heat oil in pan with small surface area over medium heat. You will need enough to submerge a tortilla, about 1 cm.

2. Cut tortillas in half. Stack both halves on top of one another and cut into triangles.

3. When oil is hot, submerge tortillas and allow to harden. If using very shallow oil, flip at least once. Remove with tongs and allow to dry on paper towel or cooling rack.

4. Sprinkle with sea salt and/or other spices and serve.


Orzo with Mushroom and Swiss Chard

• 1c orzo
• 4c water
• 1c stock mushroom stems*
• a tiny tomato from your garden that makes no sense in any other dish
• Swiss chard
• garlic, thyme
1. Boil orzo in water about 10 minutes
2. Strain water, add stock, mushrooms, tomato, and spices. Boil until most liquid is absorbed. Add Swiss chard right before removing from heat.
((*mushroom caps were stuffed with blue cheese (broil 5-10m))

Pesto Risotto


• 4c stock 1 1/2c rice
• 1c white wine
• 1 yellow onion
• 1T olive oil handful mushrooms
• 2T pesto
• 1T butter
• 1/2tsp pepper, a bit of salt

1. Heat vegetable stock (homemade or water + bouillon or water + celery, carrot, onion, garlic, s&p) on low. Over medium heat, add diced onion with oil to cast iron skillet. After 5 min, add rice (I used wild) then wine.
2. When wine is mostly absorbed, start adding some stock. I poured at 10 minute intervals, and added chopped mushrooms, salt, and pepper about halfway through.
3. Leave on medium heat and cover. If you use cast iron you don’t have to stir that often, but anything else will have to be monitored. All in all, it will take about a half hour for the rice to be al dente/edible.
4. When it’s almost done, add pesto along with butter. Allow flavors to coalesce a bit, then serve with roasted tomato.

The creamy texture of risotto comes from the starch produced by immersing rice in water. As it slowly cooks, the starch is pulled into the water, which eventually thickens to a delicious consistency. This is enhanced by herbs, and can be further embellished with liquid stuff, like pesto, butter, milk products, or even soup.

Recently, I made mushroom soup and used the leftover to make a quick risotto with prepared rice. If standing over an oven maintaining a risotto is not your scene, you can easily make a delicious dish using the soup + cooked rice method. You can use microwave rice, or just make a plain batch in a rice cooker every week or few days, keeping it in the fridge for different dishes.