Savory Navy Beans with a Touch of Heat

Navy beans cooked with vegetables, herbs and a toiuch of spice. #beans #navy @mjskitchen

 

When it comes to white beans, navy beans are our favorite.  In comparison to the Great Northern and Cannellini, navy beans cook faster, have a creamier texture (IMO), and work with a lot of different flavors. Navy beans are normally used in baked beans, but for this recipe, I went for a more savory navy bean with hint of heat.

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Smoked Salmon Appetizer – Four Ingredients

A quick & easy appetizer of smoked salmon, capers and onion mjskitchen.com

 

This smoked salmon appetizer is a delicious bite that will make everyone happy, and that honestly takes no more than 15 minutes to make, provided you don’t smoke the salmon yourself.  You’ll love hearing your guests going “YUM” with the first bite.  So if you enjoy smoked salmon and want to celebrate its flavor, not hide it, this is a great little appetizer.  Four ingredients are all you need – salmon, capers, onion and just a touch of mayo. Crackers or crispy toasts (o.k. that’s five) are used to serve it. Apples can be used in place of crackers or just added to the plate as a sweet crispy accompaniment.

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Quick & Easy Spiced Apple Breakfast

A quick & easy breakfast of spiced apples, granola, and creme fraiche | mjskitchen.com

 

When it’s cold outside, I need to be warm on the inside.  That’s why, during the winter months, cold cereal stays in the pantry and hot dishes like eggs, grits and steel cut oats become our main stay breakfasts.  This winter another hot breakfast has been added to our repertoire – these stewed, spiced apples with granola and crème fraîche.  They are so easy to make and take no time at all.  The hot spiced apples, with the crunchy granola and creamy crème fraîche yield an enjoyable breakfast that is so warm and satisfying.  And if you really want to spice things up, add some of those bourbon infused cranberries from that old-fashioned you made last night. 🙂

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Cranberry Old-Fashioned Cocktail

An Old Fashioned Cocktail enhanced with a dash of orange bitters and cranberries #cocktail #old-fashioned | mjskitchen.com

 

During the holidays we met some friends at a local Irish pub, Two Fools Tavern.  While the rest of the party ordered local brews, I ordered the seasonal Old-Fashioned which, because it was December, was a cranberry flavored old-fashioned. For me it was the perfect cocktail – slightly sweet, use of a good bourbon, and a little fruity.  I liked it so much that I made it a goal to recreate it for the new year. Here’s my version of a Cranberry Old-Fashioned Cocktail.

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Chicken Mole

Chicken Mole- Chicken smothered in New Mexico red mole sauce. #mole #chicken | mjskitchen.com

 

Back in June you were introduced to my New Mexico Red Mole, a spicy, rich sauce made with three types of chiles, pecans, pistachios, several different spices, chocolate, and a few other interesting ingredients.  The mole recipe makes over 12 cups; therefore, much of it can be frozen in 2-cup containers for future dishes like this succulent chicken mole – pieces of chicken smothered and simmered in mole sauce.

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Wishing You All a Happy Holiday Season!

Luminarias on Christmas Eve

A Huge Thanks

to all of the friends and visitors of

MJ’s Kitchen

for your continued support, comments and emails.

 

Wishing you all a very Joyous and Safe Holiday Season

and looking forward to seeing you again in 2016!

 

Picture – Luminarias on Christmas Eve. 

If you are ever in New Mexico on Christmas Eve, plan to take an evening stroll among the luminarias or farolitos.  You’ll find them in every city, town, and village and even on the roof of a lone house out in the middle of nowhere.

 

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Green Chile Chicken Posole’

Posole' (hominy) with chicken and New Mexico green chile #green #chile #posole' @mjskitchen

 

Posole’ is a traditional New Mexico dish during the holidays and one of our traditional dishes for Christmas Eve.  Our Christmas Eve version is usually made with pork and red chile.  But when we woke up to snow and cold last weekend, I had an early craving for posole’ and threw together this Green Chile Chicken Posole’.  It’s a very easy dish to make and nothing better for taking the chill off and clearing up that stuffy nose.  One might say it’s New Mexico’s version of chicken noodle soup.

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Black Bean Chili over Sweet Potato

A vegetarian Black Bean Chili served over sweet potato #chili #vegetarian #blackbean @mjskitchen

 

This black bean chili recipe is one of my pre-computer recipes that I’ve been playing around with since the early 90’s.  It’s a vegan black bean chili, but if you don’t mind a little cheese, a topping of feta is a great finishing touch.  You can serve this chili over rice (brown rice is best) or polenta, or with buttermilk cornbread or tortillas.  But our favorite way is to serve it over sweet potato.  The sweetness of the sweet potato is the perfect complement for the richness and spiciness of the chili.

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Roasted Fennel Salad with Cranberry Balsamic

Roasted fennel with sprouts, feta, pomegranate seeds, and a drizzle of cranberry balsamic #fennel #salad @mjskitchen

Inspiration for a new recipe can come in different forms and from different sources, which is the case with this fennel salad.  Back in August I saw Soni’s Food Indian Spice Roasted Fennel and pinned it as a reminder to make it one day.  Then a few weeks ago when I dropped into the Santa Fe Olive Oil & Balsamic Company for a purchase and a tasting, I was asked if I would create a recipe and write a post on one of its products – specifically its Cranberry Balsamic vinegar.  After tasting this awesome balsamic and going through several different ideas for a recipe, I lit upon the marriage of Soni’s roasted fennel with the cranberry balsamic and thus this Roasted Fennel Salad with Cranberry Balsamic was born.

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