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Spiced Chocolate Atole

Spiced Chocolate Atole: Chocolate almond milk with atole (blue corn flour), red chile and other spices | mjskitchen.com

 

One of my favorite breakfasts when I was a kid was a pop tart and a glass of chocolate milk made with Bosco.  Now that I’ve grown up a bit, I still like my chocolate milk, but I’ve made the switch from Bosco to chocolate almond milk and instead of pop tarts, I prefer a slice of banana bread or cranberry bread.  Also, instead of just plain chocolate milk, I whisk in a little atole (toasted blue corn flour), a dash of ginger, and a few other spices, for a spicy hot beverage that is quite satisfying on a cold morning.

This Spiced Chocolate Atole is a version of champurrado, but is lighter (not as thick) than most champurrado recipes and is also lighter than my winter atole smoothies I shared back in 2013. It is also much easier to make.  Nothing to blend, just a little whisking.  In the winter, I like it hot, but it can also be served cold for a summer beverage.  Just make it the day before and refrigerate.

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Grits with Red Chile and Cheese

Grits with red chile paste, roasted red chile and cheese | mjskitchen.com

 

As many of you already know, grits and chile is one of my all time favorite breakfasts.  At least once a week I’m cooking up a pot of grits and in the cooler months, we could be eating them 2 to 3 times a week.  With all of the great chiles out there it is pretty easy to keep our grits exciting by changing up the flavor with different chiles and cheese.  In previous years, I’ve shared my chipotle, feta and grits and my grits and green chile.  Now it’s time for Grits with Red Chile and Cheese.  These grits are just as easy to make as all of the others and can be made in less than 20 minutes; however, you do need some kind of red chile paste and either some roasted red chile or roasted red bell peppers.

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Green Chile Home Fries with Leeks and Carrots

A spicy stovetop winner with country fried potatoes, leeks, carrots and New Mexico green chile. mjskitchen.com @MJsKitchen

 

It is personally a challenge for me to make a potato dish without adding green chile especially during green chile season, and a challenge for which I gladly accept failure.  Potatoes and green chile are two ingredients that are just meant for each other and that’s all there is to it.

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Hash Brown Cakes with Andouille Sausage

Hash Brown Cakes with Andouille sausage and red chile pepper flakes. mjskitchen.com

 

There are potato cakes and then there are hash brown cakes.  Hash brown cakes are made with grated, uncooked potatoes, where as potato cakes are made with mashed potatoes.  My preference – hash brown cakes – any day of the week.  The Hash Brown Cakes that I’m dishing up today have it all.  They have andouille sausage, some diced vegetables, Pecorino Romano, and last, but not least, a very special red chile flake all the way from Turkey.  Serve these cakes with a vegetable side, some pinto beans or top with a fried egg for a complete meal.  See the Kitchen Notes for more side suggestions.

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Fruit and Nut Yeast Bread

A slightly sweet and delicious yeast bread with dried and candied fruits and nuts. mjskitchen.com @MJsKitchen

 

My friend Giulia at Alterkitchen is always teasing me about the savory breakfasts that I and other Americans seem to like.  She has mentioned several times, that Italians like their sweet breakfasts – rolls, croissants, muffins, sweet cakes, and such.  Well, there are days that I, too, like something a little sweet to start the day.  Sometimes it’s just a slice of toast and jelly and other times I go all out and fix my favorite pancakes – Lemon Cornmeal Ricotta.  But for the past few week, it’s been this Fruit and Nut Yeast Bread.  A wonderful breakfast bread that makes a light and tasty breakfast.  Cut a thick slice, warm in the toaster and top with a touch of butter – no jam or jelly needed!

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Persimmon Cranberry Parfait

A simple persimmon parfait made with granola and yogurt. Nothing fancy, just good.

 

Next time you get a craving for something sweet and healthy, delicious and easy to make, give these Persimmon Cranberry Parfaits a try.  They’re nothing fancy but they definitely will make you feel like you’re eating something fancy.  Fresh persimmons and dried cranberries are heated in orange juice and a splash of liquor, then layered with yogurt, granola and a few chopped nuts.  A delicious little treat in less than 15 minutes!

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Southwestern Migas (Scrambled Eggs, Green Chile and Tortillas)

Southwestern style migas is a dish that consists of scrambled eggs, green chile, and fried corn tortillas

 

Migas (Spanish for “crumbs”) is one of those dishes that is different in different countries.  In the southwest, migas is a simple scrambled eggs dish with, at the very least, some fried corn tortillas (the “crumbs”) and chile pepper. Southwestern migas and Tex-Mex migas are basically the same dish with a variety of possible ingredients. Sometimes you’ll see additional ingredients like onions, cheese, tomatoes, chorizo or avocado.  Here in New Mexico, you’ll still find different versions of migas, but the one constant is, yes – you know what it is – New Mexico green chile.

Today I’m sharing the southwestern style migas I have been making for years.  I normally fry my own tortilla strips but have been known to use store bought tortilla chips, especially when I’m hungry and I don’t want to spend the time frying the tortillas. The ingredients and process for migas are simple and the final dish goes great with a side of beans, Spanish rice, or potatoes.  The migas below are being served with leftover Roasted Fingerling Potatoes.  If you feel like jazzing the eggs up even more, I’ve provided you with a list of additional ingredients or toppings.  Experiment, have fun, and eat well.

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Atole – My Cold Weather Smoothie

In New Mexico atole is toasted blue corn flour used to make a hot drink

 

Atole (uh-TOL-ay) is little different in different countries, but in general it is a hot masa-based beverage normally served for breakfast.  In New Mexico atole also refers to the toasted blue corn flour use to make the beverage of the same name.  The atole is cooked with water and milk into a thick beverage or an even thicker porridge and then sweetened to taste.  In Mexico, atole is a similar beverage made with toasted masa (hominy corn flour), a sweetener (usually piloncillo), cinnamon and vanilla. Add chocolate and you have a drink called champurrado. Both atole and champurrado are the traditional drinks for the Mexican holiday Dia de Muertos or the Day of the Dead.  However, because it is a hot beverage, atole is normally drank during cold weather, but by some, year round.

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Chile Relleno Egg Quesadilla

A tortilla sandwich with scrambled egg and chile relleno

 

We’ve been roasting up a lot of little batches of green chile since around the first of August and with every batch, I’ve been making a quick and easy snack with some of the roasted chiles.  Our favorites have been green chile and eggs in some form or fashion.  A couple of years ago, I shared one of the easiest things to do with green chile and eggs and that was to just scramble some eggs and top them with chopped green chile.  I also shared my tortilla egg sandwich, the go to breakfast or lunch when I just don’t want to figure out what to make.  This year I’m sharing a Chile Relleno Egg Sandwich which is a combination of those two dishes, sort of.

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