Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Potluck Recipe #3: Tamale Pie

Ever since we started talking about the idea of hosting potlucks to support Open Arms, I've been thinking about this recipe. It comes from my mother-in-law, Daphne Ahlenius, who is English but has taken to California fare like a native. She brings Tamale Pie to nearly every family event, and we love it for the savory tang of the tomatoes, moderate spice and, of course, the comfort of melted cheese. Enjoy!

If you like it, consider serving it at your own potluck -- we still have spots if your interested in getting involved.

Tamale Pie

(Serves 8-12 people)

2-3 medium onions chopped
1 lb. ground turkey
1 12-ounce can tomato paste
1 28-ounce can peeled tomatoes, chopped
1 14-ounce can cream-style corn
1 cup polenta (corn meal)
2 tbsp. chile powder
1/2 tsp. cumin
2 tsp. salt
1 cup milk
shredded cheese
black or Kalamata olives

1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
2. In a large pot, saute onions in olive or canola oil until clear and soft.
3. Add turkey and cook until lightly browned.
4. Add tomato paste, tomatoes, corn, polenta, spices and milk to the turkey.
5. Pour ingredients into a large baking pan and bake for 1 hour in the middle of the oven.
6. Remove from oven, sprinkle with cheese and olives, and broil until cheese is melted -- just a few minutes should do it!

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Potluck Recipe #2: B.L.T. Soup

We’ve got soup on our mind this month, as the chill of winter persists.

The familiar BLT combo isn’t just for sandwiches anymore; this original recipe turns the favorite trio into a delicious soup.

Like all of the recipes in our potluck series, this one’s great for feeding a crowd. We still have spots for hosting a potluck—find out how to get involved.

B.L.T. Soup

(Serves 8 to 12 people)

1 lb. regular sliced bacon diced in 1” squares
3 cans diced tomatoes (28 oz. each)
2 tbsp. chicken-soup base (I use Better than Bouillon brand)
2 heads iceberg or romaine lettuce chopped in 1” squares
2 cups water
1/2 cup mayonnaise (or to taste)
Salt and pepper

1. In a frying pan or griddle, cook bacon until it is brown and crispy. Reserve bacon fat.

2. In a large soup pot, combine bacon, diced tomatoes, chicken-soup base, lettuce and water and bring contents to a boil.

3. Add the mayo and 2 tablespoons of the bacon fat. Reduce heat and simmer for 5 minutes or until lettuce is wilted.

4. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Note: If there’s not enough bacon flavor, you can add a little more bacon fat. If you like lots of mayo on your B.L.T sandwich, feel free to add a little more mayo to your soup!

Makes about 4-5 quarts.

Recipe contributed by Carol Hancuh, Open Arms volunteer

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Potluck Recipe #1: Chilly Willy Chili

The aroma of delicious food, the sound of laughter and the warmth of a welcoming table…for many of us that is Open Arms. This year, we're asking you to create that same atmosphere in your own home -- host a potluck and share the story of Open Arms and the important work we do.

Today we begin a new series of sharing: each week we’ll post a new potluck recipe from the Open Arms kitchen here on our blog. These recipes will give you a starting point for your own potluck.

This week, we’ve got an award-winning chili recipe from this year’s Toast! event. With its balance of sweetness and spice, this tasty vegetarian chili is sure to be a hit with your guests.

Chilly Willy Chili

1 lb. tempeh
2-3 tbsp. ancho chile powder
2 tbsp. cumin 2 pints of beer (Lagunita’s Copper Ale or another nice beer with malty sweetness)
15 oz. black beans
15 oz. adzuki beans
bay leaves
1/4 cup butter
3 onions, chopped
1-2 red bell peppers, coarsely chopped
1/4 cup garlic, minced
1/2 tsp. crushed red pepper
1/4 cup masa harina (or flour)
1 tbsp. chipotle chile powder
2 tbsp. cocoa powder
1 qt. diced and/or crushed tomatoes
2 tsp. honey
1 tsp. cinnamon
2 tbsp. cilantro, chopped

One day ahead:

1. Marinate crumbled tempeh overnight in 1 tbsp. of the ancho chile powder, 2 tsp. of the cumin and 1 pint of beer.

2. Cook black beans and adzuki beans with bay leaves the day before (or used canned beans).

Day of meal:

1. Heat a Dutch oven or large pot over medium-high heat for 1-2 minutes. Add crumbled marinated tempeh and 2 tbsp. butter. Cook, stirring often, until tempeh is browned (about 10 minutes). Transfer to a bowl and set aside.

2. Sauté onions, red bell pepper, garlic and crushed red pepper in butter. In a small bowl, combine masa harina (or flour), chipotle chile powder, cocoa, and the rest of the ancho chile powder and cumin with enough liquid to form a paste. When the onion sauté is soft, add 2-3 tbsp. of the chili paste. Stir to combine well.

3. Add black beans, adzuki beans and tempeh. Sauté for 5 min, stirring frequently. Add tomatoes and the other pint of beer (or stock of your choice) to desired thickness.

4. Let chili stew for 30 min. before adding honey and cinnamon. Add chili paste to strengthen spiciness. Add cilantro just before serving.

5. Serving recommendations include: Whole Grain Milling Company yellow corn chips, sharp cheddar from the Caves of Faribault, and several dollops of sour cream mixed with avocado, lime and cumin.

This recipe was created by Rita Panton and Kay Mitchell for the chili cook-off at Toast! A Volunteer Appreciation Celebration, held on Jan. 13, 2011, at Open Arms of MN.