Dinner Favorites

Carnitas Tamale Pie

I can’t believe it’s been a week since I last posted – the past seven days have gone by in a complete and total blur. It seems as though I say that on a weekly basis, especially since we moved to Texas. I think it’s a side effect of getting older……. as Ferris Bueller says, “Life moves pretty fast. If you don’t stop and look around, you might miss something”.

It was with that exact sentiment that J and I took an incredible (albeit short) trip to Vancouver, B.C. over this past weekend. J arranged everything, from the flights (easy-peasy on United) to our hotel in downtown Burnaby (outstanding hospitality at the Hilton). Although it rained practically the entire time we were there, we enjoyed the city immensely and more importantly, thoroughly relished the quiet time together. And as nice as it was to go away, it was really nice to return home – especially to the posse. They had a beautiful birthday card for me ~ and even better, they proved, without a doubt, that they are maturing into conscientious and responsible young adults by not throwing a “Project X” style house party in our absence.

Thank goodness….

Now that we are back and settled on our home turf, our next trip is to Purdue University for Sabrina’s placement testing and tour. We are going to experience the consummate college scene for a few days, so she can get a real-time feel for the school and acclimate herself to what college life is really going to be like.

This will be interesting to say the least…..

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Carnitas Tamale Pie – adapted from Pinch of Yum

  • ⅔ cup all-purpose flour
  • ½ cup yellow corn meal
  • 1 tbs. baking powder
  • 2 tbs. vegetable oil
  • 1 can diced green chiles (I used 5 whole roasted chiles, and chopped them up)
  • ⅓ cup milk
  • 1 egg
  • 2-3 cups leftover carnitas
  • 1 cup enchilada sauce (I used red, next time I’ll probably use green)
  • 1 cup shredded cheese (I used a Mexican blend)

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Whisk the cornmeal, flour, and baking powder. Stir in the oil until the mixture makes soft crumbs. Whisk in the milk and egg. Add the green chiles and stir until just combined. Bake in a 9-inch square pan for 15 minutes or until set. Since it’s a tamale-like base, it won’t be completely dry like a cornbread. It’s supposed to be just a little mushy.

Poke holes in the crust with a fork. Pour the enchilada sauce over the crust. Squeeze or drain excess moisture out of the carnitas and arrange on top of the crust. Sprinkle with cheese.

Reduce oven temperature to 350. Cover with foil, return to oven, and bake for 20 minutes. When everything is heated through, remove foil and let bake for another 5-10 minutes or until cheese is melted and bubbly.

Top with chopped cilantro, allow to cool for 5 minutes, and cut into slices or scoop into bowls.

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