FIESTA! TEX MEX CASSEROLE | cooking
We finally got around to trying a recipe from Oh She Glows. I'm not really interested in vegan cooking, mainly because a lot of it involves cashews (which I'm allergic to) and the elimination of dairy. I'm sorry, but I LOVE cheese, and I don't want to get osteoporosis, so I'm gonna drink my milk. But this Tex Mex casserole looked amazing, and I was really excited to try it. My cousin Danielle was coming to visit us for the night, and I asked her to come for dinner and we all made this together. The cook book itself is really pretty, and it has a lot of really interesting receipes. And if you're not vegan, like myself, you can still modify the recipe if you like.
While it was doing its thing in the oven, Bryon made margaritas (it's Mexican after all) and we prepared ourselves for the feast that was about to go down. Maybe it was the tortilla chips that caught my attention, but I was so excited to try this. It's FULL of good-for-you stuff without it tasting good for you. We changed the cashew cheese for real cheese of course, and we contemplated whether to add meat or not - if you're doing the same thing, I was to advise against this option because there is a lotta stuff in there! Also, instead of spinach, we used kale. The kale was not strong at all, so don't worry about it affecting texture or flavour.
After plating it and diving in, we were all really happy with it. Danielle took the recipe home to make for her parents, my mom (who also owns the book) made it for her and my dad and they both loved it. It also makes delicious leftovers, and Danielle and I may or may not have eaten it in bed after the bar that night instead of buying food. It for sure a crowd pleaser and a lot of fun to make :)
To get the recipe, scroll to the bottom of this post!
Minutes to Prepare: 40
Minutes to Cook: 20
Number of Servings: 6
Tex-Mex spice blend ◾1 T chili powder ◾1 1/2 tsp ground cumin ◾1 tsp smoked paprika OR 1/2 tsp regular paprika ◾1/4 tsp cayenne pepper, plus more as needed ◾1 1/4 tsp fine grain sea salt ◾1/4 tsp ground coriander For the Casserole ◾1 1/2 tsp extra virgin olive oil ◾1 red onion, diced ◾3 cloves garlic, minced ◾1 orange bell pepper, diced ◾1 red bell pepper, diced ◾1 jalapeno, seeded and diced (Danielle and I didn't add jalapenos on ours) ◾Fine grain sea salt and freshly ground black pepper ◾1/2 C fresh or frozen corn ◾1 14 oz can diced tomatoes, with their juices ◾1 C tomato sauce or tomato puree ◾2-3 C chopped kale leaves or baby spinach ◾1 15 oz can black beans, drained and rinsed ◾3 C cooked wild rice or brown rice ◾1/2 C vegan shredded cheese (we did skim mozzarella) ◾1 or 2 handfuls corn tortilla chips, crushed ◾Optional toppings – sliced green onions, salsa, avocado or more corn chips
Combine the Tex-Mex spice blend ingredients in a small bowl and set aside. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Oil a large 4 to 5 quart casserole dish In a large wok, heat the oil over medium heat. Add the onion, garlic, bell peppers and jalapeno and saute for 7 to 8 minutes, until softened. Season with salt and black pepper. Stir in the spice blend, corn, diced tomatoes and their juices, tomato sauce, kale, beans, rice and 1/4 C of the vegan shredded cheese (if using). Saute a few more minutes and season with more salt and black pepper, if desired. Pour the mixture into the prepared casserole dish and smooth out the top. Sprinkle the crushed chips over the casserole mixture along with the remaining 1/4 cheese. Cover with a lid or foil and bake for 15 minutes. Uncover the casserole dish and cook for 5 to 10 minutes more, until bubbly and lightly golden around the edges. Scoop the casserole into bowls and add your desired toppings.