Going to a Mexican restaurant is always something I have done for Blake. I don’t like the smell of the frying tortilla chips, margaritas or the taste of melted cheese. I don’t mind cheese slices or cheese platters, I just don’t like it melted. The hard part is I love Mexican ingredients, tomatoes, beans, cilantro, cumin, corn, etc.; I just don’t like the saucy and cheesy execution.
The last time I was “taking one for the team” at a Mexican restaurant, Blake and I were waiting at the bar for our table. In this particular restaurant, the kitchen door was right next to the bar. Blake and I were engaged in a conversation when something caught my eye. I noticed one of the employees carrying a 5 gallon paint bucket. As he walked behind the bar to grab a dish cloth, he set down the bucket. Guess what was in the bucket? LARD, 5 gallons of it. Needless to say, we didn’t wait for our table, and we left determined to use the amazing ingredients that Mexican food offers in a lardless way.
The cool thing about this dish is it’s versatility. You can top it with avocado
Disclaimer: I do love seeing all of the new trendy, fresh Mexican restaurants popping up all over the place. They are a whole different ball game.
Black Bean and Chicken Casserole
- 3 tablespoons butter or oil
- 1 large onion, sliced (more if you are an onion fan)
- 3 chicken breasts, cut into 2 inch pieces
- 1-1/2 cans diced tomatoes, undrained
- 1-1/2 cans black bean, drained
- 3 ounces green chile peppers, diced
- 3 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro or 1 tbsp dried cilantro
- 1 ½ tablespoon ground cumin
- 3/4 cup uncooked instant rice
- ¾ cup frozen corn (optional)
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees
- Heat butter in a large skillet over medium heat.
- Stir in onions, and cook until soft and translucent.
- Stir in chicken; cook until golden on all sides. (this may take two rounds in the pan)
- Pour onions and chicken into a casserole dish.
- Stir in tomatoes, black beans, corn, chile peppers, cilantro, cumin, and rice.
- Bake in preheated oven for 45 minutes.
- Allow 10 minutes to cool and enjoy
- Serve with sour cream.
Sales used in this recipe: Black beans- buy one get one free- Kroger, cilantro free from the garden, chicken from Costco.