Happy St. Patrick’s Day everyone! I am having spinach pizza tonight to “celebrate.” Ok, really it just sounds good. (see my last blog for a picture)
The last couple of nights I have been sad and alone. My husband was out of town to visit his family. Ok, I wasn’t too sad, but I was pretty lonely! I am so used to having my husband around. Especially now since he was laid off.
I wasn’t sure what I’d be doing for dinners while he was gone, since we have planned basically all of our dinners for the two of us. Everything I make up has two servings and we eat them, and that’s the end of it.
I am NOT a fan of leftovers. Foods never taste good to me unless they are made fresh. The only exception to this is the black bean casserole I make, which ONLY tastes good to me when eaten the next day. I also eat it cold, because it tastes like leftover pizza. (Ok, so I guess leftover pizza is the only other thing I like better the next day. But only pizza from a restaurant. Store-bought pizzas taste funky the next day.)
The only problem with the black bean casserole is that it is not clean in any sense of the word. I tried to make sure to eat cleanly the whole rest of the day to make up for it.
Black Bean Casserole
2 cups chopped onion
1.5 cups chopped bell peppers
1 14.5 can diced tomatoes (do not drain)
3/4 cup salsa
2 tsp ground cumin
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 cans black beans, thoroughly rinsed and drained
4 medium tortillas
8 oz shredded cheese
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
After preheating the oven, the next thing I do is grab the largest skillet we have. It’s probably about a 12 inch pan, but use what you have. In that add the onion, bell peppers, diced tomatoes, salsa, ground cumin, and garlic cloves.
Mix it all together. Bring that to boiling and then reduce heat. Simmer, uncovered, for 10 minutes.
Stir in the black beans (remember to fully rinse and drain them).
Then grab a 9 x 13 pan and spread 1/3 of the bean mixture over the bottom of it.
Top with two of the tortillas, overlapping as necessary and then four ounces of cheese.
Add another 1/3 of the bean mixture, the remaining two tortillas and then the final third of bean mixture.
Bake, uncovered for 25-30 minutes or until heated through. Sprinkle with remaining cheese and bake for another five minutes. Here it is fresh from the oven.
If desired you can top individual servings with chopped fresh tomato, shredded lettuce, green onions, cilantro, olives and/or serve with sour cream (plain greek yogurt).
One serving is 1/6 of the casserole which has about 350 calories, 50g carbs, 11g fat, and 21g protein. Here it is the next day, all cold and looking just like a piece of leftover pizza.
I used to top it with fat-free sour cream, but I have switched to full-fat sour cream as it doesn’t have the funky chemicals that reduced-fat and fat-free versions contain. I mixed a half tablespoon of sour cream with an ounce of plain greek yogurt. I topped that with a bit of chopped green onion. Tasted great!
It is definitely higher in sodium than most of my dinners now (it has about 850 mg of sodium per serving). And there were more chemicals than I usually eat (in the salsa, tortillas, cheese and the can of tomatoes). But with more preparation I could probably make it cleaner. I wasn’t sure how it would turn out if I used Ezekiel tortillas, so I skipped those so I could ensure the taste factor being great.
I also had my favorite side dish.
Making my own great tasting ranch dressing gets me excited to eat salads. It helps to actually love the taste of your food.
What are your opinions on leftovers? Am I the only picky one here?