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July Recipes

TEXAS ROUND-UP SPANISH RICE

1/2    Cup Onion (chopped)

1/2    Cup Green Bell Pepper (chopped)

2       Tbsp. Canola Oil

1       Cup Long Grain White Rice (uncooked)

1       (10 oz.) Can Ro-Tel Mild Diced Tomatoes and Green Chilies

1/4    tsp. Ground Turmeric

1       tsp. Ground Cumin

1/2    tsp. Salt

1/2    tsp. Garlic Powder

1 1/2 Cups Water (or more)

2 to 3 Tbsp. Fresh Cilantro or Parsley (chopped)

Heat oil in pan that has a tight fitting lid. Add the onion and green bell pepper and cook over medium heat until softened.

Meanwhile, drain the juice from the diced tomatoes and chilies into a 2 cup measuring cup and add enough water to make 2 cups. Set aside.

Measure seasonings and stir into the tomatoes and green chilies left in the can. Add the rice to the onions and green peppers in the pan and stir to coat the rice with oil. Pour the tomato juice/water mixture, tomatoes and green chilies  with seasonings into the pan and heat to a boil. Cover with a tight fitting lid and lower temperature to low. Cook, covered for 20 minutes or until liquid is absorbed and rice is soft. Stir in the cilantro or parsley. Serve hot. 

Serves 6.


CAMPFIRE

MUSHROOM AND CORN QUESADILLAS

2    tsp. Oil 

1/2 Medium Red Onion (thinly sliced)

10  Button or Cremini Mushrooms (thinly sliced) 

1/2 Cup Corn

      Salt and Pepper (to taste)

4    Flour Tortillas

1    Cup Pepper Jack Cheese (shredded)

Veggie Mixture: Lay out a piece of foil and center onion, mushrooms and corn on the foil. Drizzle with oil and season with salt and pepper. Bring up the sides of the foil and double fold the ends to make a packet. Place packet on the grate and cook until veggies are tender.

Quesadillas: Lay out four pieces of foil and place a tortilla on top of each piece. Divide half the cheese among the four tortillas, sprinkling it down the center of each. Divide the veggie mixture evenly among the tortillas and then sprinkle the remaining cheese on top of the veggies. Fold the two sides of the tortilla toward the center and then wrap the quesadilla in the foil, sealing the edges to make a packet. Place the packets on the grate and cook for a few minutes on each side, until the cheese is melted and the tortillas crisp.

Makes 4 Quesadillas.

Alternately: The veggies can be cooked on the camp stove. Heat oil in a skillet over medium high heat. Add the onion and mushrooms and saute until softened and lightly browned. Add the corn and stir to combine. Remove from heat and add salt and pepper to taste. 

*Special note: The veggie mixture can be made a day or two ahead of time.


BACON POTATO SALAD

2    lbs. Baby Gold Potatoes 

2    tsp. Salt (for boiling water)

1    lb. Bacon

1    Medium Red Onion (diced small)

2    Cloves Garlic (finely minced)

3    Tbsp. Olive Oil

3    Tbsp. Red Wine Vinegar

3    Tbsp. Dijon Mustard

1    tsp. Sugar (or to taste)

1/4 tsp. Salt (or to taste)

1/4 tsp. Pepper (or to taste)

1    Ear Fresh Sweet Corn
      (kernels cut off cob to equal 3/4 cup or substitute frozen corn, thawed)

1    to 2 Cups Fresh Baby Spinach (loosely measured)

1/2 Cup Fresh Parsley (finely chopped)

To a large pot, add the potatoes, cover with water and add 2 teaspoons salt. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, allow potatoes to simmer for about 15 minutes or until fork tender. Drain and rinse potatoes under cold water to stop cooking process; set aside. While the potatoes are cooking make the bacon.

To a large skillet, add the bacon and cook over medium heat until done and crisp as desired, about 10 minutes, flip intermittently. Transfer bacon to a paper towel-lined plate and when cool enough, crumble it; set aside.

To the skillet with the bacon fat, add the onion and cook for about 5 to 7 minutes or until tender, stir intermittently. In the last minute of cooking add the garlic, stir and cook until fragrant. Take skillet off the heat and set aside.

To a very large bowl, add the olive oil, red wine vinegar, mustard, sugar, 1/4 teaspoon salt, pepper and whisk to combine; set aside.

Cut potatoes in half or quarters depending on their size and add to the large bowl. Add the crumbled bacon, red onion and garlic (use a slotted spoon to remove onion from skillet to drain away excess bacon fat, discard fat), corn, spinach, parsley and toss well to combine. Taste potato salad and make necessary adjustments of salt and pepper. Serve immediately or cover and refrigerate until chilled. Potato salad will keep stored airtight, in refrigerator for up to 4 days. Serve warm or chilled. 

Serves 8 to 10.


SOUTHERN FRIED CORN

5    Slices Thick Bacon (diced) 

1/2 Cup Onion (diced)

1/2 Cup Sweet Bell Pepper (diced)

4    Ears Fresh Corn
      (kernels cut off, or 2 cups frozen corn, thawed)   

      Ground Black Pepper

In a large skillet (cast iron is preferred) over medium heat, crisp the diced bacon bits. Remove bits from pan and set aside to drain. Leave fat in skillet and turn heat to low. Add the onions and peppers and saute for 4 minutes. Once the onions and peppers are tender add the corn. Stir to combine and combine and continue to cook for about 5 minutes. Add black pepper to taste. Taste test corn before adding any salt, if needed. Add the bacon to the corn and serve immediately.

Makes about 3 cups or 4 servings.


SUPER FRESH

CUCUMBER SALAD

Red Wine Vinaigrette:

1/4 Cup Olive Oil

2    Tbsp. Red Wine Vinegar 

1    Tbsp. Lemon Juice

1    tsp. Dried Oregano

1/2 tsp. Salt

Freshly Cracked Pepper

Salad:

2    Cucumbers

4    Roma Tomatoes

1/2 Small Red Onion

1    Green Bell Pepper

1/4 Bunch Parsley

2    oz. Feta Cheese

Prepare the vinaigrette first to let the flavors blend as you prepare the rest of the salad. In a small bowl whisk together  the olive oil, red wine vinegar, lemon juice, oregano, salt and some freshly cracked pepper. Set the dressing aside.

Peel the cucumbers if desired. Dice the cucumbers, tomatoes and bell pepper. Thinly slice the red onion*. Pull the parsley leaves from their stems, then give them a rough chop. Crumble the feta cheese.

Place the cucumbers, tomatoes, bell pepper, red onion, parsley and feta cheese in a large bowl. Pour the dressing over the top and toss to combine. Serve immediately or refrigerate until ready to eat. This salad holds up well over a few days in the refrigerator. Stir before serving. 

Makes 6 servings

* To take the harsh bite out of the red onion, be sure to slice it very thin and soak it in a bowl of ice water for 5 to 10 minutes, drain well before adding to the salad.


SWEET & SPICY

SUMMER SALAD

2  Cucumbers (diced)

2  Cups Black Beans (drained, rinsed)

2  Cups Corn (fresh or frozen, thawed)

2  Red Bell Peppers (diced)

3  Cups Cherry Tomatoes (cut in half)

2  Large Avocados (diced)

1  Large Bunch Cilantro Leaves (chopped)

Dressing:

6    Tbsp. Apple Cider Vinegar

2    Tbsp. Raw Honey

2    Tbsp. Extra Virgin Olive Oil

1/2 Tbsp. Fresh Garlic (minced)

1/2 to 1 Tbsp. Fresh Chili Pepper (minced, or 1 Tbsp. Hot Sauce)

Salt and Pepper (to taste)

Place the cucumber, black beans, corn, red pepper, cherry tomatoes, avocado and chopped cilantro in a large glass bowl.

In a smaller bowl, whisk together the dressing ingredients until well combined. When you are ready to serve the salad, drizzle the dressing over the salad and toss gently to combine. 

Makes about 8 servings.


CHEESY BACON POTATO

FOIL PACKETS

3    Medium Russet Potatoes

1    lb. Thick-cut Bacon

1/2 Yellow Onion

1    Tbsp. Olive Oil

3/4 tsp. Salt

1/4 tsp. Garlic Powder

3/4 Cup Monterey Jack Cheese

3/4 Cup Sharp Cheddar Cheese 

1/4 Cup Parmesan Cheese (grated)

2    Tbsp. Heavy Cream

Salt and Pepper (to taste)

Green Onions or Chives (for garnish)

Heavy-duty Aluminum Foil

Preheat outdoor grill to medium heat or indoor oven to 400 degrees. Dice bacon into 1/2 inch pieces and add to a large skillet. Place over medium heat and cook, stirring frequently until crispy. Remove bacon from skillet and place on paper towel lined plate to drain.

Slice potatoes and onion between 1/8 and 1/4 inch thick and add slices to a large mixing bowl. Drizzle with olive oil and toss to coat. Sprinkle with salt, garlic powder and Parmesan cheese then toss to combine. Note: You can cook all the potatoes in one large packet or divide the mixture between 4 foil sheets for individual servings.

Layer the potato and onion slices intermittently with grated cheeses and cooked bacon so that there is cheese and bacon mixed evenly with potatoes and onions. Drizzle the top of the potato mixture with heavy cream and seal the packet(s) by folding the edges together and pressing firmly. 

Grill 20 to 30 minutes or bake 40 to 45 minutes, until potatoes are tender. Open packets carefully to allow steam to escape then season to taste with salt and pepper. Garnish with chopped green onion or chives if desired. 

Serves 4.


SUMMER CORN SALAD

6    Ears Corn (husked, cleaned)

3    Large Tomatoes (diced)

1    Large Onion (diced)

1/4 Cup Fresh Basil (chopped)

1/4 Cup Olive Oil

2    Tbsp. White Vinegar

Salt and Pepper (to taste)

Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Cook corn in boiling water for 7 to 10 minutes, or until desired tenderness. Drain, cool and cut kernels off the cob with a sharp knife.

In a large bowl, toss together the corn, tomatoes, onion, and basil. Mix the oil, vinegar salt and pepper and toss together with the corn and tomato mixture. Chill until ready to serve.

Special Note: Microwave It!

This microwave method is handy if you are just cooking a few ears of corn for dinner and don’t want to trouble with boiling a big pot of water. Leave the corn in their husks and microwave them two at a time on HIGH for four to six minutes, depending on the age of your corn. Let them cool enough to handle and then strip off the husks and silk. (As a bonus, shucking is a lot easier after microwaving!)