PlataNachos

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This dish mixes Latin-American favorites platanos and nachos in a healthy, family friendly meal.

 

Ingredients:

4-5 Green Plantains

garlic cloves

olive oil

Lean ground turkey

1 can of Black beans

1 can of Pinto beans

Corn kernels (optional)

Garlic Powder

Ground Pepper

Cilantro

Jalapenos

Shredded Cheese

 

Let’s start with the plantains.  Peel and slice each plantain into about 1/2″ pieces.  Place all of the pieces in cold water and boil until they give a bit- not too soft.  Remove the pieces from the water and place on a flat surface and pat dry.  On a cutting board youa re now going to flatten these.  Place the plantain on the cutting board and press down firmly with your hand, a bowl or a can- you want to be sure to apply pressure.  once they are all flattened arrange on a cookie sheet and place them in the over on 425 until crisp on the outside.

Nacho topping time!!!!

In a saucepan place the ground turkey, season with the salt, pepper and garlic powder.  To add extra flavor you can crush the garlic clove and throw it in whole then remove before serving. While this browns combine the beans and corn kernels in another saucepan.  Season as desired with cilantro leaves, salt, pepper.  The water from the canned beans will aid in thickening.  Drain your turkey meat once it is completely brown and cooked.

Assembly!

Layer those plantains as high as you wish for a fun family serving.  Top the plantains with the ground turkey and beans then top with shredded cheese.  Add sliced jalapenos as desired.

Veggie hiding tip:

To add more veggies free to dice onions and peppers into the ground turkey.  Another alternative is topping with fresh guacamole, salsa or pico de gallo!

 

 

 

Caribbean Pockets

I saw on a website that Havana Central (a Cuban restaurant with locations in NYC) was having an empanada contest.  Now, if you follow me on instagram you know that my empanadas have been a hit lately and many people request them.  I have made them with chicken, turkey, beef and even veggie ones.  Naturally when I saw this contest I thought “what encompasses the Caribbean and what makes your mouth happy”…. Coconut and Guava! I have made this glaze previously with chicken and it was AMAZING so I figured why not try it with shrimp!  Needless to say the outcome was delicious.
Here’s a tip…. to stretch the filling a bit further cut the empanada discs in 1/2.  When you cut the discs in half you will use about 2-3 shrimps in each one where if you keep the empanada whole you are using 4-6 shrimps.
Crispy empanadas stuffed with shrimps in a guava coconut glaze.

Crispy empanadas stuffed with shrimps in a guava coconut glaze.

Ingredients:
1lb clean and drained shrimps
2.5 oz Guava Paste
1/2 tsp. Garlic Powder
1/2 tsp. Cayenne Pepper
1 tbsp Sweetened shredded coconut
4 oz Water
1 Package of empanada discs (10 in a package)
2 Cups of oil (for frying, I use canola)
Mis En Place:
Cutting Board
Knife
10″ frying pan
1 qt. Saucepan
Tongs (to flip empanadas while frying)
Measuring spoons
Spoon to stir glaze
Now get cooking: Dice or slice guava paste so that it is very thin and will dissolve faster.  Place the guava paste bits into a 10″ sauce pan along with the water making sure the water covers the guava paste. Let the paste dissolve in the water while simmering and stirring frequently.  When paste has dissolved add the coconut, garlic powder and cayenne pepper.  Stir to incorporate the seasonings then add shrimp.  Coat the shrimp well, turn up to high heat and cover the saucepan .  The shrimp will release water and make the glaze looser.  Uncover the pan and continue to cook shrimp and reduce the sauce. Once the glaze is thick and shrimp are fully cooked turn off heat.
Scoop shrimp into the center of the empanada disc, being sure not to put in too much sauce.  Fold over the empanada and seal with a fork.  In a saucepan place the oil and heat until about 375 degrees.  Be sure your saucepan is deep enough for the whole empanada to be submerged in the oil.  Once oil is hot place empanada in and turn until it is golden brown.  These delicious empanadas can be served as an appetizer or a quick meal.  I hope you enjoy them as much as I have.

 

“Forget Banana Pudding” Parfait

I am not a big fan of banana pudding but I do enjoy a good one every once in a while.  After buying the vanana low fat yogurt at Trader Joe’s my breakfast has been a banana, granola, steel-cut oats parfait.

parfait

Mis En Place:

 

  • Steel Cut oats- not instant
  • 1 Banana
  • Vanilla almond granola
  • Vanana yogurt

Directions:

In a bowl (or mason jar) put a dab of yogurt on the bottom, then sprinkle oats, sprinkle granola, a layer of banana.  repeat the layers in this order.  The banana lets the granola stay crunchy while the oats soak some of the moisture from the yogurt like overnight oats.

Honey Dijon Vinaigrette

dressing

I make this dressing for myself about once a week.  I use it on tuna and chicken instead of mayo and in all of my prepped lunch salads.  Last week I made it for my son’s football trophy ceremony and everyone loved it… so here it is!

Mis En Place:

  • 1 tbsp. Dijon Mustard
  • 2oz White Vinegar
  • 1oz Olive Oil
  • 1oz Honey
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Dried Oregano
  • Garlic or Garlic Powder

Directions:

Combine the wet ingredients in a reusable jar. Shake it and taste it.  The salt, pepper oregano and garlic are to your liking.  If you are using fresh garlic I suggest throwing it in the food processor with some of the liquids and some fresh oregano instead of dried.  Viola!  There you have it..

Explore a bit and please comment below on how you like it.