Tag Archives: Cabo San Lucas

Chicken Broccoli Asparagus Quinoa Casserole

Chicken Broccoli Asparagus Quinoa Casserole

  • Servings: 4-6
  • Difficulty: easy
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Chicken Broccoli Asparagus Quinoa Casserole
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The other night I tried a Paleo version of an Orange Chicken Stir Fry. Frankly it sucked and I won’t post it because I don’t post dishes that I wouldn’t make again. So I had some leftover broccoli, mushroom, asparagus and chicken. When I make an Asian dish I try to bookend it with some Jill prefers which is comfort, Italian, pastas etc.

I knew that Orange Chicken Stir Fry missed the mark and to hear her make comments like “hmmmm” or “interesting flavors” while she picked through it like a monkey picking ticks of other monkey’s I knew I need to bring a comfort dish the next night. I was thinking of our chicken and rice, chicken divan and chicken spaghetti and thought I would make a hybrid. A while back I tried something similar that used quinoa but mine was a bit dry so I knew I needed to get some moisture on the bottom with some sauce.

Casseroles and myself are not photogenic. So don’t let the pics scare you off. The sauce was terrific and really pulled it all together. For people who are repelled by vegetables this is a great way to get people to eat them because they are masked in cheese and sauce. Learned that from my Mom.

Ingredients:
2 chicken breasts
Half a bunch of diced asparagus
A large crown of broccoli (chopped)
1/2 cup of sliced mushrooms
1 cup of Quinoa
1 cup of chicken broth
2 cups of milk
1/2 cup of flour
4 tbs of butter
Fresh Shredded Cheddar Cheese
Parmesan Cheese (fine grated)
2 tbs of Kosher Salt
1 tbs of Chili Powder
3 tsp of Garlic Powder
3 tsp of Onion Powder
2 tsp of Cayenne Pepper
1 tbs of Black pepper

Directions:
1. In a pot on medium heat pour 1 cup of chicken broth and add your chicken breasts and cook covered. It will take a 10-15 minutes. You can cut your chicken before poaching it to speed it up. I wanted to enrich my broth with the chicken breast so went the longer route.

2. Preheat your oven to 375. Take your casserole dish and add 2 tbs of butter and put it into the oven to melt.

3. Chop your veggies. When chicken is done remove to rest. In another sauce pot make a roux with flour and 2tbs of butter. It’s going to be pretty thick so slowly pour in your chicken broth. Just be careful because the broth is hot and you might make biscuits. Mine was actually lumpy so I put it in a blender. Slowly pour the milk in. Add your spices and mushrooms and stir until it thickens up. Taste and adjust accordingly.

4. At this point you have cut raw veggies, a sauce, a buttered dish and diced chicken. I took the buttered dish out of the oven and pour in the cup of quinoa and moved it around. I poured a little sauce to make sure it was well coated and moist. I combined my veggies and chicken and then poured them into the dish.

5. Then I poured sauce all over to make sure every nook and crannie was saturated. I used my spatula to much everything around well. Sprinkled grated Parmesan cheese and then top with fresh grated cheddar cheese. Covered with foil and cook for 20 minutes. Then remove the foil and cook another 20-30 minutes. Let is rest for a 5-10 minutes Serve and enjoy.
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Drunken Pork Sandwich (Tortas Ahogadas)

Drunken Pork Sandwich

  • Servings: 6-8
  • Difficulty: medium
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Drunken Pork Sandwich
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One of my favorite shows is Diners, Drive-ins and Dives hosted by Guy Fieri on the FoodNetwork. Those are the places I like to try when I am traveling. What I like about it is that most of those places do a few dishes really well or they put a unique spin on their version. We go to Cabo yearly and like to try various places. We almost have a full slate of places we like, so it’s hard to fit in new ones.

On Guy’s Big Bite he and Jonathan Waxman made this sandwich called Tortas Ahogadas which I think translates to Drunken Sandwich. Guy got the idea from a little shack he went to while filming an episode of Triple D in Cabo San Lucas. Sad to say the little stand is now gone, but tried to keep it alive with his own spin on it. The way he talked about this sandwich made it a must try for me.

This thing is pretty awesome. It does take a while to make given several steps but it’s not too crazy. Soft and spicy pork butt shredded on a simple roll, smothered in this spicy tomato sauce topped with pickled onions and pico. You get smoky, tangy, sweet, spicy all in one bite. It’s fabulously messy with juices dripping off your hands. And I get to have it for lunch for the next two days.

Ingredients:
Sandwich:
Rolls
Butter for the rolls
Dukes Mayo
Cilantro
Pickled Onions (ingredients below)
Tomato Sauce (ingredients below)
Braised Pork Butt:
2 tbs chili powder
2 tbs ground cumin
2 tbs granulated garlic
2 tsp dry mustard
1 tsp ground coriander
2 tbs kosher salt
1 tsp black pepper
2 1/2 pounds boneless pork butt, fat trimmed, cut into 3 or 4 large pieces
1/4 cup canola oil
2 bottles of Mexican beer

Tomato Sauce:
6 to 8 dried chile de arbol (soaked in warm water)
2 tbs oil
1 white onion (diced)
1 jalapeno (seeded and diced)
4 cloves garlic (minced)
2 tsp cumin
1 tsp dried Mexican oregano
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
One 28-ounce can crushed fire-roasted tomatoes
1/2 cup of Mexican Beer
Kosher salt and black pepper

Pickled Red Onions:
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 red onion (sliced into long strips)
2 tsp Kosher salt
1 tsp of cayenne
2 tbs of honey
pinch of cinnamon
1/ cup of red wine vinegar
1 bay leaf

Directions
This has four parts… the pork butt, the tomato sauce, pickled onions and pico de gallo.

1. Start with the Pork butt. Trim a lot of the big fat parts off the butt. Then cut it into 3 or 4 big chunks because you want to maximize the sear but also allow it to be covered in the beer. Mix your rub and apply it to the pieces of pork butt until well coated. Preheat your oven to 375 or Crock pot. In large cast iron skilled on medium high heat, add some high heat oil like canola or grapeseed and sear the meat on each side. Takes about 10 minutes.
Turn off the heat and de-glaze with the beer. If you use the oven make sure the meat is covered with beer and then wrap in foil and put it into the oven for 4 or 5 hours. Let it cool and shred with a fork.
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2. Pickled onions: Cut your onion into ribbons. In a medium heated pan add some oil and then the onions to soften.
Add the spices, honey, and vinegar and bring to a boil and reduce to a simmer for 1 minute and remove from the heat. Let it cool and then put it in the fridge until ready to use. IMG_9606
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3. Tomato sauce will take about 70 mins. Start by soaking your dried chilies in warm water for about 20 minutes. I microwaved some water for two and half minutes then added the chilies and put another measuring cup on top to ensure they are submerged. (see below)
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Take a large pot and put it on medium heat. Add some canola oil. Dice your onions and add them to the pot to sweat for 5 minutes. Next add your minced garlic, jalapenos and chilies. Let those also sweat for about 4 minutes.
Then add your spices and liquids and let this simmer for 50 minutes.
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Use an immersion blender or carefully pour your tomato sauce into a blender and blend until smooth.

4. Pico: I took four tomatoes, one onion, one jalapeno and a handful of cilantro and diced it all up. I then squeezed the juice of 1.5 limes and salted and peppered to taste.

5. Assembly. Butterfly your roll and butter each side. Place it in your oven on broil until brown and crispy.
Add you shredded pork. Top with your tomato sauce and then add your pickled onions and pico and cilantro. Lastly slather a little Dukes on the top side of the roll. Grab three or four napkins and a beer or cocktail and enjoy.

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Flora Farms, Cabo

Flora Farmshttp://www.flora-farms.com/

We go to Cabo every year because we got roped into a time share.  The massage hooks me into those darn presentations every time.  Years ago we became “owners” despite our plan to say “no” to every question asked.   We actually love it but still suffer from a little shame from pulling the trigger on a time share.

Our 7 day routine is wake up, workout, layout, shower, dinner, drinks and jacuzzi.   Rinse and repeat.

We rent a car so dinners are when we go into to town and find spots to eat. We have our restaurant rotation down so kicking one off our rotation is always a tough call.

  • Nic San sushi – Sushi curry salad (dressing is amazing)
  • Edith’s  : fresh fish, table side ceasar salad, sipping tequila
  • Mi Casa: touristy sure but El Mole Pablano Chicken or the Conchinta Pabil are awesome.
  • J&J Habanos Fresh Mojito’s with Cuban Rum.
  • El Farallon’s fresh Ceviche, Margaritas and the view
  • Baja Brewing Company – local brews, music and bar food.   etc..

We decided to drive over to San Jose to check out Flora Farms and folks I can’t describe the place so check out the link.  It’s probably one of the coolest places I have ever been.    You drive out in the middle of nowhere on

Cabo Flora Farms (2)