Mexican Fiesta

My obsession with cheese runs deep.  Therefore, any time I can find an excuse to eat Mexican food, I take it.  Interesting spices, intriguing flavors, comforting cheese–it’s like winning the food lottery every time. 

Tonight we made a creamy (and healthy!!…an oxymoron, I know) dip to precede a shredded chicken, bean, and tortilla pie.  Who would have imagined that plain Greek yogurt mixed with some refried beans and a whole host of spices would be delicious?  If you are questioning this flavor profile, you have to make it.  As for the ingredients for the pie–shredded chicken, beer, corn, beans, onions, spices, and cilantro, not to mention the cheesy blanket on top–its potential for deliciousness was a no brainer.

The perfect comfort food on a cold night after a long day of skiing?  Absolutely.  Insert your beverage of choice, a cute dog (who rivals the cute boyfriend in shagginess), a comfy couch, and no morning alarm clock and you have the perfect recipe for a wonderful night.

The Dip:

  • 1 cup or so fat free plain Greek yogurt
  • 1 cup or so refried beans
  • 1/2 cup or so of your favorite salsa (we didn’t have any salsa that was actually edible, e.g., expiration date of early last month, so we used about 1/3 cup of green taco sauce and a number of glugs of Tapatio)
  • to taste: cumin, cayenne, chili powder, onion powder
  • cilantro
  1. Throw it all in a bowl, mix together, and tweak to your liking.  
  2. Yes, it is that simple.

Mexican Chicken and Black Bean Pie:
Inspired by Martha Stewart’s Tortilla Pie 

  • 4 whole wheat tortillas (10 inches)
  • 2 cans of black beans drained and rinsed
  • 2 chicken breasts, cooked and shredded
  • a substantial amount of Mexican blend cheese or cheddar cheese
  • a dollop of olive oil
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 1 jalapeno, diced
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 4 scallions, sliced thinly
  • 1 beer (we used a Corona)
  • 1 1/2 cups frozen corn
  • to taste:  cumin, cayenne, and chili powder
  • cilantro to taste
  • a twist of lime
  1. Use the bottom of a 9-inch springform pan to cut the tortillas to fit.
  2. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  3. Cook and shred chicken.
  4. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add onion, jalapeno, garlic, and other seasonings.
  5. Cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, 7 to 10 minutes.
  6. Add beans and beer, and bring to a boil. 
  7. Reduce heat to medium and simmer until liquid has almost evaporated, 10 to 12 minutes. 
  8. Stir in shredded chicken, corn, scallions, lime, and cilantro and turn heat to low.
  9. Taste and adjust for seasoning.  (In my world, this means add a whole bunch more spice.)
  10. Fit a trimmed tortilla in bottom of the springform pan.
  11. Layer with the bean and chicken mixture to your liking, then sprinkle on cheese.  
  12. Repeat three times, and cover with as much cheese as your cholesterol and calorie intake can bare. 
  13. Cover and bake for 10-12 minutes or so.  Then uncover and bake until cheese melts, 20 to 25 minutes. Remove side of pan. 
  14. To serve, slice into wedges.  Sprinkle pie with cilantro and sour cream

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