Friday, April 5, 2013

Leftover Makeover

Have you ever looked in your fridge and wondered, what in the heck am I going to do with all this stuff?  I did that the other day and found leftover rice, pinto beans, roasted poblanos, and a half a jar of salsa.  As I pondered this perplexing situation, I decided I should concoct some sort of casserole.  With a lot of doubt, I asked my husband what he thought. He said, "let's do it."

So, with all of that doubt still in my head, I went into the kitchen to cook some chicken breasts and make this said casserole.  As a side note, whenever I need cooked, shredded chicken for something, I always boil it with similar seasonings as I would use in the final dish.  It makes a juicy, more flavorful chicken.

Anywho, I cooked and shredded my chicken.  Then I dumped all of the said ingredients into a bowl, added some cheese, seasonings, and a little chicken stock to make it moist, put it in a casserole pan, topped it with more cheese, and, voila, a masterpiece.  I really truly for goodness' sake didn't think this would be any good.  But it was.  And, if you don't have these kinds of leftovers in your fridge, it's still worth cooking it all from scratch.  Trust me.

Get ready to clean out the fridge.  It's almost dinnertime.

2 roasted, peeled, and chopped poblanos (see note below)
2 C cooked white rice
2 C cooked, shredded chicken
2 C cooked pinto beans with the juice (you can use canned, but drain those)
1 C frozen corn
1/4 C cilantro, chopped
1 C salsa
1 to 1 1/2 C chicken stock
1 T garlic powder
1 T cumin
1 T onion powder
1 T chili powder
One 4ounce can of black olives
Sliced green onions for garnish
Salt and pepper to taste
3 C shredded cheese (divided in half) (I used pepper jack)

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  Mix all of the ingredients above, reserving the other half of the cheese.  Use enough chicken stock to make it moist but not watery.  Put the mixture in a 9 x 13 pan.  Top with remaining cheese and black olives.  Bake for about 20-25 minutes or until heated through and cheese is browned.  Garnish with green onions.

**NOTE:  To roast poblanos, put them on a sheet pan and place them in a 400 degree oven.  Roast them, turning occasionally, until all of the surface is charred.  When they are cool enough to handle, peel the skins off.  Next cut off the stem and remove all of the seeds.

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