Mexican(ish) Super Foods!

Wow, I was going through my to be posted file tonight and realized I am really far behind on my posts!  I have about  4 recipes  that still need to go up here before I forget how I made them!

Mexican is one of the favorite food generas in this house.  Strangely enough, I have not really done Mexican food for a long time.  I am not sure why, it used to be one of my staples.  Well more recently, my husband and I discovered quinoa, and he mentioned that it would make a good Spanish rice substitute…got me thinking!  I decided to try this, only “beef” it up a bit.

I made what we might think of as traditional taco meat, with a few changes.

First, I took a small package of firm tofu, and crumbled it up.  I mixed it by hand with 500 grams of ground beef, and cooked it up.  I also added 1 small onion.

When the meat was done, and the onions were turning translucent, I drained them and followed the directions on my taco seasoning packet.  I added 2/3 of a cup of water, and the packet and mixed.  I let it continue cooking until it was almost dry and then removed it from the heat so I could continue to use the stove top.

My kitchen is so small I can only have one pot or pan on at a time.

Next, I got out all the cans I would need for my Spanish Quinoa.

I strained the tomatoes saving the juice, and rinsed the black beans and corn.

I sauteed another small diced onion, and garlic in the  bottom of a pot, and then added the tomato juice, a little jalapeno juice and enough water to bring the total liquid up to 2 1/3 cups.

Bring this to a boil, and then add the quinoa.

 Lower the temperature and cover the pot.  Let this simmer for about 15 minutes until the white ring starts coming off of the kernels  and they are soft.  It is okay to take the lid off and stir to check on it every once in a while, unlike rice!  Which is good cause I burned my first batch!

When all the water is soaked up, and the quinoa is done, add all the veggies in, as well as your spices.  I used chili powder, cumin, salt, paprika, and pepper.

This is what it looks like when it is done cooking.

Next is the super easy part…grate your cheese, get out your sour cream, and use your tortillas…

(yes you can make your own tortillas, however, the ones I made were actually store bought Paratha Indian bread)

Assemble your tacos as you normally would with rice and meat.

Spanish Quinoa and Ground Beef/Tofu Tacos:

Spanish Quinoa

1 cup quinoa

1  can corn

1 can black beans

1 can diced tomatos (I used S&W diced tomatoes with jalapenos)

½ cup jalapeno juice (optional if you have pickled jalapenos around)

1 medium onion

2 cloves garlic

1-2 teaspoons cumin, chili powder, paprika, pepper, salt to taste.

Water

Strain tomatoes saving the juice.  Measure out the juice.  Fill the measuring cup to a total of 2 1/3 cup, of liquid using the water and jalapeno juice.

Dice one medium onion, and 2 cloves of garlic.  Sautee them in a pan until onions turn translucent.  Add the liquid and boil.  Reduce to a simmer and add quinoa.  Cook for 15 minutes or so, checking and stirring every once in a while (I burned my first batch cause there was not enough liquid).  Quinoa is not like rice, you can take the lid off and stir every once in a while.  While that is cooking, rinse out a can of black beans, and a can of corn. Add them to the tomatoes and set them aside.  When the water is absorbed and the quinoa is blown up, soft, and the white edges start separating it is done.  Add the tomatoes, beans, and corn, as well as your cumin, paprika, chili powder, and salt and pepper to taste.  I did about 2 teaspoons of cumin, 1 of paprika, 1 of chili powder, and just a dash of salt and pepper.  Heat on the stove until hot.

Taco meat:

500 grams ground beef

320 grams of firm tofu

1 packet of taco seasoning

1 small onion

Crumble up 1 small block of firm tofu.  Mix it by hand in with ground beef. Add the mixture to a pan and cook until meat is done.  Add one diced onion while cooking.  When the meat is no longer pink, follow the directions on the back of your taco seasoning packet.

Tacos:

Grate 2 oz of cheddar cheese for 10 tacos.

Use 10 flour tortillas.

And sour cream.

Also you can use salsa, guacamole, olives, cilantro, spinach or lettuce, and fresh tomatoes if you happen to have them.

Assemble your tacos with a scoop of the Spanish quinoa (like you would Spanish rice), and a scoop of the meat.  Mixing the two together is actual an okay idea as well, and just serving from one pot.  Put a little cheese on, and a dollop of sour cream (about 2 teaspoons).  Add any other veggies you enjoy on tacos.

This meal is jam packed with protein, with the quinoa, beans, meat, and tofu, and is incredibly filling!

This whole meal is maximum 8 points per taco, but I actually wound up making enough filling for about 20  tacos, which I will use tomorrow night, so in actuality  they are probably about 5 points each counting enough tortillas in the recipe for 20 tacos.

 

I took some of the filling and some wanton wrappers the next night and made these delicious fried empenadas.  I filled the wrappers, and fried them in olive oil.  Then I had a bowl of finely grated cheese, and some sour cream.  Dip into the sour cream, then dip the cheese…I would have mixed the  cheese into the filling, but I forgot…also dip in hot sauce or salsa…very good…

I don’t want to know what weight watchers points are!

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