True Mexican food is way more than drive-thru tacos and nachos. There’s a whole world of flavor out there, and Mexican food does it well with cumin, oregano, garlic, onion, and a whole palette of colorful peppers.
Chile verde (verde is the Spanish word for green) is a traditional pork stew from northern Mexico. Filled with green poblano peppers and green tomatillos this dish is definitely verde! It is a delicious, warm, comforting, rich and savory stew.
It’s great when something so delicious is also so good for you. Bone broth, onions, and garlic are all great immune system boosters. (See ten things you can do to boost your immune system here, here and here.)
This is a great make-ahead dish. The flavors are even better the next day, and if there are any leftovers they freeze well, too.
Tomatillos are native to Mexico and look like little green tomatoes wrapped in a papery husk. Their flavor is bright, tart and kind of lemony. To use just pull the husk off with your fingers and rinse them before chopping and using in your recipe.
Poblano peppers are also native to Mexico. They are large, sometimes even larger than a bell pepper, but with a dark green shiny skin, slightly flatter shape and a pointy tip. They are fairly mild, only slightly spicier than a bell pepper, and can be eaten raw or cooked. Cooking mellows their flavor making them somewhat sweet.
lime wedges, sour cream, shredded cheese, chopped cilantro for serving
Heat the olive oil or lard in a large stockpot over medium-high heat. Add the ground pork and brown about four minutes while stirring to crumble. Add the onion, tomatillos and poblanos to the pan and continue cooking another five minutes. Add the garlic, salt,and pepper, and oregano and cook another minute. Then add the chicken broth and chopped cilantro. Bring to a simmer, the cover and cook 45 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are tender. Serve the chili verde with a squeeze of fresh lime and any other toppings you like.
WordPress has updated my toolbar and at this writing I can’t access the program that allows me to give you an easy-to-print version of this recipe. I’m sorry about that! So until I get this figured out you will just have to copy and paste onto a blank document if you want a print version.
This painting by Bernardino Pinturicchio hangs in the church of Santa Maria del Popolo in Rome. The photo is from our family’s trip to Rome in 2010.
Our gift to you this season!
This is the second in a series of lessons I have written that are appropriate for a family Bible study or homeschool devotional time. The lessons are suitable for approximately ages 6 to 13, but younger children can be included with some extra explanations from mom or dad. Older children of course can participate! They will probably have their own insight to share.
Each lesson begins with a memory verse. It is so important that our children, and parents too!, are able to memorize portions of God’s word and, as the Psalm says, hide it in our hearts.
This lesson contains several sections to help link the wonderful story of Jesus’ birth to music, art and history. Of course there is also a recipe – this is Well Fed Family after all!
How do I use this lesson?
The lesson is somewhat long for smaller children to sit through all at once. I like taking each section, or maybe two sections together, and stretching the lesson out over a few days or evenings. Give your children time to really study the art examples and then create their own masterpiece. Take time to sing the selected Christmas carols together as a family. Maybe you can find performances of these songs to listen to on YouTube or Pandora, or maybe someone in your family plays a musical instrument and can read the music provided and play for your family.
The Writer of the Gospel of Luke
This lesson focuses on passages from the Gospel of Luke. For a journalist’s perspective on Luke’s writing and reporting style you and your older children might be interested in Jamie Dean’s commentary on The World and Everything In It from December 12, 2018. Use this as a starting point for some family discussions on Christian worldview.
Christmas Dinner is over and the refrigerator is full of half-empty containers of leftovers. Hopefully you have already made a big pot of broth with the turkey carcass. Everyone is tired of turkey sandwiches, but a steaming hot Turkey Pot Pie will warm everyone up and help use up those little bits of vegetables languishing in the refrigerator.
This is comfort food folks! The good news is there are no hidden unwanted ingredients like hydrogenated fats, MSG, artificial flavors or chemical preservatives!
Turkey Pot Pie (or chicken) with gluten-free options
3 cups or more of leftover turkey cut into bite-sized chunks
2-3 cups homemade turkey broth OR leftover gravy
2 cups or more of leftover cooked vegetables such as peas, carrots, green beans, broccoli, pearl onions OR if you are making this at another time of year when you don’t have Christmas leftovers you can dice up a couple carrots, a stalk of celery, and a leek or an onion and saute them in a little butter before proceeding with the recipe. Add a 1/2 cup of frozen peas if you like.
3 Tablespoons butter
(omit if using leftover gravy) 4 Tablespoons all-purpose unbleached flour OR for gluten-free use an all-purpose gluten-free flour mix like Bob’s Red Mill
Butter the inside of a deep dish pie pan, or other oven-safe dish of similar size. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees (375 if you are using the almond flour crust).
Place the chopped turkey and the cooked vegetables in the prepared pie pan mixing together.
If you are using leftover gravy just warm it up now and skip this step. If you are using broth go ahead and continue here. Melt the butter in a large saucepan. Whisk in the flour or GF flour blend and continue cooking for about 2 minutes as it bubbles, but don’t brown it. Continue stirring as you pour in the homemade turkey broth. Then quickly whisk in the cream and continue cooking 3 or 4 more minutes until the sauce thickens a bit more. Stir in fresh pepper and 1/2 tsp of salt. Taste and adjust with more seasoning if needed.
Pour the broth mixture over the vegetables. If you are using leftover gravy pour it over the vegetables. Stir it up to mix well.
Roll out your pastry and lay it gently across the top of the turkey filling. The pastry should generously cover the filling. Press the overlapping part into the rim of the baking dish to seal.
Optional for a golden brown crust: Crack the egg in a small bowl and beat well with a fork. Use a pastry brush to brush the egg all over the entire crust.
Use a sharp knife or the tines of a fork to make small holes or slits in the crust to allow the steam to escape.
Put the baking dish onto a cookie sheet to catch any spills and place the whole thing into the preheated oven.
Bake 20 minutes and then reduce the heat to 375 and bake an additional 20 minutes or until the crust is golden brown and the filling is bubbling and hot.
Comfort food at its best, this is also a frugal way to use up leftover turkey, vegetables and gravy.
3 or more cups of leftover turkey or chicken cut into bite-size chunks
2-3 cups homemade broth OR leftover gravy
2 or more cups of leftover cooked vegetables such as peas, carrots, green beans, pearl onions, broccoli OR you can saute diced carrots, celery, leek or onion to equal 2 cups and add frozen peas if you don't have leftover vegetables
3 Tablespoons butter
4 Tablespoons all-purpose unbleached flour (omit if using leftover gravy) OR use an all-purpose gluten-free flour mix like Bob's Red Mill
1 cup organic heavy cream
salt and pepper to taste
homemade pastry dough for a deep dish pie, see links and options above in the blog text
1 egg (opt.)
Butter the inside of a deep dish pie pan
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees
Place the chopped turkey and leftover cooked vegetables in the prepared dish mixing together.
If you are going to use leftover gravy then skip this next step and just warm up the gravy and pour it over the turkey and vegetables.
If you are using broth then first melt the butter in a large saucepan and whisk in the flour or GF flour blend.
Cook the flour and butter 2 minutes as it gets bubbly, then whisk in the turkey broth.
Whisk in the cream and continue cooking 3 to 4 more minutes until the sauce thickens.
Stir in pepper and salt to taste.
Pour the broth mixture over the vegetables and combine it all together.
Roll out your pastry and lay it gently across the top of the turkey filling generously covering the pie.
Press the overlapping edges of the crust into the rim to seal.
Optional for a golden brown crust you can crack the egg into a small bowl, beat it well with a fork, and use a pastry brush to brush the egg all over the crust.
Use a sharp knife to make four slits in the crust to allow steam to escape.
Place the dish onto a cookie sheet to catch any spills and place the whole thing into the preheated oven.
Bake for 20 minutes and then reduce the heat to 375 and bake an additional 20 minutes or until the crust is golden brown and the filling is bubbling and hot.
This blog is for informational purposes only. Some links may be monetized. Thank you for supporting Well Fed Family with your purchases!
I love slow-cooker recipes! We were gone all day yesterday and it was so nice to come home to the delicious aromas of dinner nearly ready. The prep was simple – I pulled out a grassfed chuck roast from the deep freeze the night before, rolled it in my homemade Cajun Seasoning, stuck it in the crockpot and topped it with chopped onions and diced tomatoes. Eight hours later I made some rice and a salad and there was dinner!
If your Cajun Seasoning doesn’t have salt, you will need to add a teaspoon of sea salt as you rub the seasoning over the beef.
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I have to thank my friend, Meghan, for giving me the idea for this post. She is highly qualified to make these being both Irish (on her dad’s side) and Mexican (on her mom’s side). There are enough recipes out there for the traditional Irish foods like corned beef and cabbage, or sausage and boxty (I did those last year). And since we are a No Artificial Colors blog having something faux-green is right out. I was captivated by this fun, light-hearted take on St. Patrick’s Day food since it uses lots of real food in a delicious, fun, family-friendly way.
The idea is simple yet brilliant. Make a big pan of oven-fries (the inspiration for my fries comes from Lidia’s Italy) and then top your fries with traditional nacho ingredients. To keep the Irish theme be sure to use plenty of Kerrygold butter and cheese. (We love Kerrygold, not because it’s Irish but because they pride themselves on using milk from grassfed cows.) Be sure to use plenty of fresh cilantro and/or parsley on top because it is both green (can you wear cilantro instead of a shamrock if you don’t want to get pinched?) and it’s also really good for you.
preheat the oven to 475 degrees. Scrub the potatoes and slice them into thin wedges, at least 8-10 per potato, maybe more depending on how big your potatoes are. Thinner wedges get crispier. Thicker wedges are more like steak fries. Melt together the butter and olive oil. Toss the potatoes with butter mixture and sprinkle on the salt or seasoned salt and toss well. Place the wedges skin-side down in a large cast iron skillet or stoneware baking sheet or on a parchment-lined baking sheet. It may take more than one pan to fit them all in. Cast iron or stoneware help the potatoes brown better. Bake in the preheated oven for 30 minutes, turning the potatoes over once or twice to help them cook. If you’re using two pans be sure to rotate pans during the cooking. While the potatoes are cooking assemble the rest of the ingredients for the topping so you will be ready as soon as the potatoes are done.
sour cream (read the label, nothing but cream and cultures should be in it, we like Daisy)
chopped fresh cilantro or parsley
Brown the ground beef. Sprinkle in the taco seasoning and mix well. Assemble the remaining ingredients. Feel free to add any other nacho toppings you want like black olives, jalapenos, or bacon. Mmmmmm, bacon….
for the nachos
When the potatoes are done pull them out of the oven and turn on the broiler. While the broiler is heating up, spread the seasoned ground beef evenly over the potatoes. Evenly spread the shredded cheese over the ground beef. Slip the potatoes, beef and cheese back into the oven and broil for 2 minutes or until the cheese is melty. Remove from the oven and top with the remaining toppings. Serve at once.
The Acadians began as French settlers of a region called Acadia — in eastern Canada and northern Maine — but they eventually traveled down the Mississippi River in the 1750s to escape difficult British rule. Near the end of that long river, the Spanish finally welcomed them in what would become Louisiana.
The Acadians settled down and got cooking, developing some of the tastiest food anywhere. Étoufée, boiled crawfish, gumbo filé, and fried catfish became trademark dishes for these folk, whose name was soon shortened to just Cajuns.
Cajun food focuses on local ingredients found in the bayous and river delta, and (unsurprisingly) their menus feature fish and seafood quite often. In addition to the traditional French mirepoix (diced onion, carrot and celery), the Cajuns like to add garlic, cayenne pepper, and plenty of black pepper to make zesty, full flavors.
Although their basic seasoning combination is…. (You can read the rest here)
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Maybe it was because we went to a Chinese New Year parade last weekend. Or maybe because it’s getting closer to Lads to Leaders convention time when we always go out for Asian food and I’m thinking about that. I don’t know what it is, but I’ve been craving spicy stir fries with cashews and peanuts. Plus my daughter loves the combination of sriracha sauce and lime. So it seemed like the right thing to do – make a big pan full of chicken and noodles with spicy peanut sauce.
There are so many delicious restaurant-style meals you can make yourself at home. Chinese and Thai food can seem intimidating, but make it once and you’ll see how it all comes together. Soon you’ll be trying all sorts of favorite take-out foods. And making it yourself means you can use better quality ingredients, no MSG, and still save money over buying it already prepared.
Mix up the sauce first so it will be all ready at the end. Get all of the vegetables, garnishes and meat chopped up and set out on plates or a cutting board. Bring the pasta water to a boil and then when you put the pasta into the water you can start cooking the chicken. That way everything will be ready at about the same time. The secret to success with Asian style stir fries is to be prepared before you start cooking. Once it gets going there is no time to stop and chop something.
Prepare the sauce by combining all of the sauce ingredients, peanut butter through lime zest and juice, in a small saucepan over very low heat. Stir until the peanut butter melts and everything combines into a somewhat thick sauce. Remove from heat and set aside.
Toast the sesame seeds by placing them in a dry skillet over low heat. Shake or stir the seeds until they begin to heat and become fragrant. As soon as they begin to slightly change color remove them from the heat and set aside.
Cut the chicken into bite-size pieces. Have all of the vegetables prepared. Cook the pasta according to package directions. Heat the coconut oil or lard in a large heavy-bottom skillet or wok. Add the chicken and stir fry over medium-high heat for 4-5 minutes or until the chicken is browned on the outside and nearly done on the inside. Remove chicken to a plate and set aside.
Add the bell pepper, cabbage and carrot to the pan and stir fry 2 minutes or until crisp tender. Add the green onions to the pan and continue to stir fry for another minute. Return the chicken to the pan and toss with the vegetables. When the pasta is done, drain it well and then add the drained pasta to the pan with the chicken and vegetables. Pour the sauce over everything, sprinkle in the toasted sesame seeds and toss well to combine. Remove everything to a large serving platter and garnish with the chopped peanuts and chopped cilantro.
It’s the beginning of a new year as I write this post, and I was able to convince my husband to go on a Paleo diet with me. (We’re following Chris Kresser’s Paleo Cure) Yesterday he told me he was already missing bread – mostly to sop up all the great sauces and pan juices from the delicious Paleo food we’ve been eating! So I made him happy by fixing waffles for lunch today. And I made me happy by finding this great Paleo-friendly waffle recipe from Eat Beautiful that uses green plantains instead of flour. The original recipe had the chicken cooked right into the waffles, but I wanted to be able to have a chicken gravy to go over top ’cause that’s how I like ’em.
These waffles are definitely main dish worthy – brunch, lunch or dinner – with a little south-of-the-border spice added to make them extra good. The gravy is made with nourishing homemade bone broth and thickened with arrowroot powder so it’s gluten-free and allergy friendly. I’ve even given a substitute to make this dairy-free, too.
If you’ve never purchased plantains before – they are like giant, thick bananas. They can be used green (like here for these waffles) or almost black-ripe (like for these pancakes). When they are green they are a good source of resistant starch which feeds the beneficial bacteria in your digestive tract.
Savory Paleo Waffles with Chicken Gravy
for the waffles
2 green plantains
8 eggs (preferably from pasture-raised hens)
1/2 cup melted healthy fat (such as lard, coconut oil, ghee, butter)
Preheat your waffle iron according to manufacturer’s directions. Using a sharp knife, cut the tip ends off the plantains, then cut in half across the middle, then cut each half lengthwise. This will leave you with quartered plantain sections. Now you can slip your finger between the thick green skin and the yellow flesh. Peel off and discard the skin. Place the plantain quarters in a blender. Add in the remaining waffle ingredients, the eight eggs through the teaspoon of honey. Blend on high until the mixture is smooth and creamy. Yes, it will be pretty runny and you won’t understand how this could possibly make waffles, but it will work!
Brush the waffle iron with a little coconut oil or butter and then ladle the batter onto the preheated waffle iron. Use the amount of batter directed by your waffle iron manufacturer. Mine says to use 1/3 cup, but I actually ended up needing to use closer to 1/2 cup to get a waffle without holes. So adjust your batter accordingly. The baking time will be as directed on your waffle iron directions. Mine is 3 minutes. That worked just fine.
To make the gravy:
Melt the butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the garlic and onions and saute for about three minutes until the onion begins to get translucent. Then add in the shredded chicken, chicken broth, salt, cumin and oregano. Stir until everything is simmering and hot. Combine the arrowroot with the 1/4 cup water until no lumps remain, then stir the arrowroot mixture into the simmering broth. Stir for just a little until the gravy begins to thicken, then reduce the heat to very low to keep warm until the waffles are done.
To serve: Place one waffle on a plate, top with butter if desired (and who wouldn’t desire a little more butter?!) and then ladle over about 1/2 cup of the chicken gravy. This whole recipe made about 8 waffles in my waffle iron, but yields will vary depending on the size of waffle your machine makes. I’d say all in all about 4-6 servings of waffles and chicken gravy.
Savory waffles with a little kick are smothered in rich chicken gravy for a hearty lunch, brunch or dinner entree. The waffles are made with green plantains, making them gluten-free and a great source of resistant starch for a healthy digestive system.
for the waffles:
2 large green plantains
8 eggs (preferably from pasture-raised hens)
½ cup melted healthy fat (such as lard, coconut oil, ghee, butter)
½ teaspoon ground cumin
½ teaspoon sea salt
1 teaspoon raw honey
for the gravy:
2 cloves garlic, pressed
¼ cup minced onion
2 Tablespoons butter, preferably grassfed (for dairy-free sub lard or coconut oil)
3 cups chopped or shredded cooked chicken
1 teaspoon sea salt
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon dried oregano
2 cups homemade chicken bone broth
1 Tablespoon arrowroot powder
¼ cup water
To make the waffles:
Preheat your waffle iron according to manufacturer's directions.
Using a sharp knife, cut the tip ends off the plantains, then cut in half across the middle and cut each half lengthwise.
This will leave you with quartered plantain sections.
Slip your finger between the thick green skin and the yellow flesh.
Peel off and discard the skin.
Place the plantain quarters in a blender.
Add the remaining waffle ingredients, the eight eggs through the teaspoon of honey.
Blend on high until the mixture is smooth and creamy.
The batter will be thin.
Brush the preheated waffle iron with butter or coconut oil, and then ladle the batter onto the preheated waffle iron using the amount directed in your waffle maker instruction book.
Bake according to manufacturer's directions - about 3 minutes or until golden.
to make the gravy:
Melt the butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the garlic and onions and saute for about three minutes until the onion begins to get translucent.
Then add in the shredded chicken, chicken broth, salt, cumin and oregano.
Stir until everything is simmering and hot.
Combine the arrowroot with the ¼ cup water until no lumps remain, then stir the arrowroot mixture into the simmering broth.
Stir for just a little until the gravy begins to thicken, then reduce the heat to very low to keep warm until the waffles are done.
Place one waffle on a plate, top with more butter if desired, and ladle about ½ cup of the chicken gravy over top.
This recipe yields approximately 8 waffles and 3 cups gravy.