The first purchase was a food dehydrator. I have been drying almost around the clock since I got it. For the record 3 1/2 boxes of sliced mushrooms reduces to fit into a 1 cup container. 5 pounds of potato slices will fit in a quart freezer bag. The list goes on and on. I am really glad because I can take all of the fruits and veggies that used to wither and be thrown out and dry them instead. My produce waste has decreased considerably. I also learned I can dry all my vegetable peelings and feed them to the chickens and pigs. Of course I have no farm animals living with me in Suburbia, but it is good to know the next time a random pig shows up at my doorstep.
Today Brown brought me a tortilla press. I had decided a while back to start making our tortillas. We never use a full pack of them and about 1/2 of the package will dry out before I think about doing anything with them. In addition to the food waste I have become an ardent package reader. You would be surprised at what all is added to corn tortillas. In their real food state they have just 2 ingredients, Masa Harina and water. Masa is merely dried corn treated with lime and water, which is dried again before grinding finely and water is just water. I had the Masa and a new press so it was inevitable that I would have to use it tonight. Fortunately I had just pinned a recipe for Chicken Tacos with Cilantro Pesto. It is from What's Cooking Chicago and you can find it right here http://joelens.blogspot.com/2010/05/cilantro-lime-chicken-tacos.html.
1 cup cilantro leaves
2 1/2 tablespoons E.V. olive oil
2 tablespoons slice toasted almonds
1 1/2 teaspoon lime juice
1/2 cup shredded asiago cheese ( Parmesan may be substituted)
1 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 chicken broth
Mix everything in a blender or Magic bullet until it is well blended and a little creamy looking. Set aside.
Slice 3 large chicken breasts into strips. Salt, pepper and add a little garlic powder. Spray a pan with Pam and quickly cook the chicken. When it is cooked through ( about 5 minutes) add the pesto to the pan and heat through. Place on top of warmed soft tortillas and tops with whatever additional taco toppings you wish to use.
1/2 cup Masa Harina
1/3 cup water.
In a mixing bowl, stir until it holds together and is smooth. Roll 4 walnut shaped balls. Remove 1 from the bowl and cover the remaining with a damp paper towel. This step is important, so learn from my mistake rather than your own. Press according to the instructions with the tortilla press. Mine said to line both surfaces with plastic. It made removal a piece of cake! Cook on a hot griddle for about 40 seconds, turn and cook the other side for about 20 seconds. when all 4 are cooked set aside until right before ready to serve. Cook again 30 seconds per side. Easy, easy, easy!
I have been buying sales items for a while now and freezing them for later use. I ran across cilantro a few days ago for 59 cents a bunch. I think I bought 5 of them, washed and removed the leaves, then minced them and stuck them in old plastic ice cube trays and popped them in the freezer. I did not dry the leaves before chopping so there was a fair amount of liquid in them. When they were frozen I took them out of the trays and put them in a ziploc bag. I figured each cube is about 1/4 of a cup so I used 3 of them for the recipe. I halved everything but decided I had rather have a little too much cilantro then not quite enough hence the 3 cubes. Since I had moisture in the herb already I did not add the chicken broth. We didn't miss it. Other than that omission I followed the directions completely. I took out a bunch of green onions to slice over the tops of the tacos but I forgot to do it so we only had a dollop of Daisy Light sour cream. ( Read the labels on your sour cream. Daisy is the only one I will buy anymore). personally The Hub and I like a little heat and when I make it again I will add 1/2 of seeded pepper just for the kick it will give. I will also cut back on the salt a lot. It was too salty for us. It is a very fast entree. I spent about 10 minutes prepping and another 10 cooking. I am adding this to the quick dinner rotation.
Now back to waiting for another delivery!