La Gringa’s Weekly Baja Menu and CSA Boredom

CSA boredom/Weekly Baja Menu

CSA BOREDOM?

It’s easy to get bored with Mexican winter vegetables; Swiss chard, beets, butternut and spaghetti squash, cherry tomatoes and peppers. Greens and squash, rinse and repeat. Making a weekly menu and adjusting your focus may help. I have to remind myself to feel gratitude. Boredom just means that I haven’t tried any new ways to eat the available vegetables.

It’s Fresh

The majority of my produce has been grown locally and was picked within a couple of hours to days of harvest. When you go to Whole Foods in the U.S. you will find a much larger and expensive selection of produce.

It’s Local

However those fruits and vegetables probably traveled hundreds to thousands of miles before they landed on your plate.

The transportation process robs us of ripe-picked produce and nutrients and the carbon footprint takes its toll on the environment.

It’s All Relative, Others Aren’t as Lucky

When I consider all of this and reframe the situation then I am happy to eat the same healthy fresh foods week after week in new and exciting ways.  I’m up for the challenge.

I feel sorry for anyone who doesn’t have access to any fresh produce or is eating a larger variety of warehouse ripened, flavorless vegetables that were picked a few weeks ago.

Powerful Nutrition

Cheers for greens and winter squashes.
Deep green leafy veggies provide an abundance of  folate, vitamins C, K, A, potassium, magnesium and other phytonutrients. Yellow squashes are filling and help you meet your daily requirement of vitamin A, E and Bs, calcium and manganese.

What’s For Dinner, Doc?

We have been blessed with excellent mild days so the fisherman can bring us delicious yellowtail, cabrilla (grouper) and red snapper; the stars of this week’s healthy menu.

Weekly Baja Menu/Whatsfordinnerdoc?

Cabrilla with Lemon and Thai Basil; Saute garlic in olive oil, basil, add fresh fish and cook until just opaque. Deglaze the pan with a squeeze of lemon.  Finish with a tablespoon of butter and serve with steamed snow peas and sesame seeds.

Spaghetti Squash and Mushroom Bolognese

Sesame seared yellowtail or tuna. Season fish with sea salt and pepper. Coat with black and white toasted sesame seeds. Briefly sear in hot coconut oil, serve with baked butternut squash and bacon. or Asian zucchini noodles.

Quinoa and Chard Patties

Moroccan Chicken and Cumin Carrots, Here’s a recipe for inspiration.



La Gringa’s Weekly Menu, Made With Love

La Gringa’s Weekly Baja Menu/MyBajaKitchen.com

La Gringa’s Weekly Baja Menu/MyBajaKitchen.com

Made With Love

by T. Delaplain

La Gringa’s Weekly Menu is a useful tool to help me eat real food at home, use the abundance of fruits and vegetables that I buy and stop the “what’s for dinner?” woes. I’m trying to get back on the real whole food wagon and planning is everything for me.

Have you kept your New Year’s intentions?

I have definitely kept my workout schedule full but I can’t seem to shake the sugar “monkey on my back”. I think skipping meals and/or not planning a high protein lunch is my biggest downfall. If I eat a piece of toast on the run in the morning then I’ll be starving by noon and go foraging for granola bars, candy, tortillas, muffins: all carbs, all the time. Yuck, a high carb diet zaps my energy and I swear it causes more chronic pain.

So here’s La Gringa’s Weekly Menu with a few links to inspire you.

La Gringa’s Weekly Baja Menu/MyBajaKitchen.com

Chard and Potato Pie I think I’ll add a little bacon or chorizo for flavor but it would be a great vegetarian dinner.

Chicken in Salsa Verde, not really a recipe but add chicken pieces to prepared Herdez salsa verde or make your own with tomatillos and green chili’s, chopped cilantro, onion and ground cumin. Slow cook it 4-6 hours. Shred with a fork and serve with cumin rice or cauliflower cumin rice. I’ll save the leftovers for quick, high protein lunches on salad or with a small tortilla.

Zucchini Patties. These look delicious and I’ll serve them with Swiss chard topped with lemon and garlic tossed with toasted panko bread crumbs. Recipe in development.

Grilled flank steak, Carne Asada.  Served with rosemary butternut squash.

Carne Asada Tacos

Sheet Pan Chicken Fajitas

Sheet pan chicken fajitas/ MyBajaKitchen.com

Taco Seasoned Ground Beef and Quinoa One Pan Meal, recipe under development.

Lemon Piccata  

Lunches and snacks

I will fill in the gaps with lots of greens, baby lettuces that I’m growing on my deck, roasted beets, fresh pineapple salsa, roasted green beans,  peppers, cherry tomatoes, zucchini noodles and Brussel’s sprouts.

Market Fresh Mexican Produce

What’s on your menu this week? 

Pin it for later to your Pinterest Menu Board.

Baja Weekly Menu/#farm fresh, #healthy,#dinner ideas

Check out my Pinterest Paleo, Whole Foods  And  Taco Tuesday, All Taco Board for more dinner inspiration. 

 

Easy Sushi Recipe, Spicy Baja Tuna Towers. Impress Your Friends

Easy Sushi Recipe, Towers of Spicy Baja Ahi Tuna /MyBajaKitchen.com

Make this easy spicy sushi recipe with spicy Baja ahi (yellow fin) tuna, perfect sushi rice, siracha mayo and avocado.
A lunch or appetizer portion that’s sure to impress your guests. No need to roll and cut sushi, unless you like to make sushi then go for it. Actually making sushi with your friends does sound like a great way to get messy in the kitchen. Either way you get to eat spicy Baja sushi.

I’m taking my easy sushi recipe to Fiesta Friday to share. Have you tried the Tailwind app for Pinterest and Instagram? I opened a new tribe called Healthy Recipes for Healthy Families. Here’s your personal invitation to join my Tailwind tribe.

With Tailwind you can manage your Pinterest boards with ease and set up perfect pinning schedules. I’m loving this new application! Check it out and join my tribe.

Enough about me, here’s the easy sushi recipe I promised.

I found the perfect foolproof sushi rice recipe at MakeMySushi.com.

I used small 4 inch springform pans to shape the towers but you could probably use a ramekin with some ingenuity.

Make the sushi rice before preparing the fish and let cool to room temperature, about 45 minutes in advance of assembling the towers. Chop serrano and green onions and mix with mayonnaise, lime juice and siracha. Cut tuna into small dice and mix with spicy sauce. Slice avocado. Assemble towers; the fish goes first in the pan followed by the rice. Pat rice down over fish. Invert onto your serving dish or onto individual plates. Gentle remove springform pan. Garnish with avocado slices and green onions. Serve with wasabi paste and soy sauce.

[lt_recipe name=”Easy Sushi, Spicy Baja Tuna in Sushi Towers ” servings=”4″ prep_time=”1H” cook_time=”10M” total_time=”1H10M” difficulty=”Easy” summary=”Spicy tuna towers over sushi rice. Easy sushi recipe. ” print=”yes” image=”http://mybajakitchen.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/08/image-3-295×300.jpg” ingredients=”Sushi rice, uncooked 2 cups;Rice vinegar, unseasoned, 1/4 cup;Sugar, 1 tablespoon;Salt, 1 teaspoon;Fresh raw ahi (yellow fin) tuna, 16 ounces, may substitute any sushi grade tuna, jack or salmon;Mayonnaise, 2 tablespoons;Siracha, 2 teaspoons or to taste ;Serrano chili, 1 teaspoon minced;Green onion, 1 tablespoon sliced thinly;Lime juice, 2 teaspoons;Avocado, 1/2 sliced;Wasabi paste and soy sauce on the side ” ]Rinse rice until several times until water is clear. Combine 2 cups of rice and 2 1/2 cups of water. Bring to a boil, stirring once. Reduce heat and simmer for 8-10 minutes. ;Heat vinegar, sugar and salt until solids dissolve. Stir vinegar mixture into hot rice and combine. Let cool to room temperature. ;Dice fish and combine with remaining ingredients except avocado. ;Divide fish into 4 inch springform pans (4). Top fish with prepared sushi rice and pat down with a spoon or a flat based measuring cup to compress the rice. ;Invert pan onto serving dish and open springform. Gently remove pan and base. Garnish with avocado slices and serve with wasabi and soy sauce on the side. [/lt_recipe]

PIN IT and Please share this post. I’m so happy with the delicious results.

Easy Sushi, Spicy Baja Tuna Towers/ MyBajaKitchen.com



Ten Essential Kitchen Gadgets You Can’t Live Without in Baja, Mexico

10 Eesential kitchen gadgets you can't live without in Baja Mexico / www.mybajakitchen.com

TeKitchen Gadgets You Can’t Live Without in Baja, Mexico

Every chef or home cook has a list of essentials kitchen gadgets that they can’t live without and these are ten of my favorite kitchen tools that make my life easier. Of course I could make do with a knife, a cutting board and fire but why would I, when I can have these gadgets?

I purchased my casa in Loreto Bay completely furnished with a well appointed kitchen but I struggled to find the kitchen tools that I use every day. I had taken photos of the contents in every draw and cabinet so when I moved in I would know what I needed to bring back to the Baja. I highly recommend this for anyone who buys a furnished home. It is an easy way to have a visual inventory of your new home.

Loreto is a small Baja, Mexican town so I wouldn’t expect to find specialty American kitchen gadgets. You can drive to a larger city like La Paz or Cabo San Lucas to shop, order from Amazon.Mx or bring your gadgets from the U.S. or Canada. Here’s my top ten list of essential kitchen gadgets. Continue reading “Ten Essential Kitchen Gadgets You Can’t Live Without in Baja, Mexico”

Sweet, Spicy Watermelon Salsa for Fish or Chicken

Sweet, spicy watermelon salsa for fish or chicken or as a salad. Easy Mexican salsa.

Sweet watermelon, spicy serrano pepper, cool cucumber, fragrant cilantro and red onion make a summer watermelon salsa that is bursting with flavor.

There are a zillion recipes for watermelon salsa on the internet so please try every variation. I wanted more crunch so I added crisp cucumber and of course I love a punch of citrus from lime.

Sweet, spicy watermelon salsa for fish or chicken or as a salad. Easy Mexican salsa.

Serving Suggestions
I served my salsa with grilled salmon and zucchini in a lemon basil marinade. You could serve yours with grilled shrimp kabobs, margarita marinade chicken or fish, or topping green leafy veggies like kale or arugula with a few crumbles of cojita or feta, for a vegetarian Mexican salad. I could eat this salsa on tortilla chips, fish tacos or with a spoon.

Meet me at FiestaFriday for a taste and to meet some other foodies. Our cohosts are CH @ Cooking from Heart and
Nimmi at Adorable Life

 

[lt_recipe name=”Sweet Spicy Watermelon Salsa ” prep_time=”10 MINUTES ” total_time=”10 MINUTES ” difficulty=”Easy ” summary=”Quick and easy sweet, spicy watermelon salsa.” print=”yes” image=”http://mybajakitchen.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/07/image-50-225×300.jpeg” ingredients=”2 cups diced watermelon;1 cup diced cucumber, about 1/2 cucumber ;1/2 cup chopped red onion;1/2 to 1 serrano chili pepper;1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro, about 1/2 a bunch;1 large lime juiced or 2 key limes;Dash of salt” ]The watermelon, cucumber and onion should have a uniform 1/2 inch dice. The serrano should be finely chopped. Remove the seeds if you want less heat. Combine all ingredients. Add a dash of salt and adjust as needed. You can make this ahead of time and store covered in the refrigerator up to two days. [/lt_recipe]

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Sweet and spicy watermelon salsa for chicken or fish

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Easy Korean Pork Lettuce Wraps, Mexican-Asian Fusion

Pulled Pork Korean Lettuce Wraps

Korean pork lettuce wraps meet the Baja with a salty, sweet, spicy explosion of flavor. You can make everything in advance and serve these as a main meal or in bite sized cocktail nibbles.

Northern Baja, Baja Norte, cuisine has a strong Asian influence. Restaurants in Tijuana and Ensenada are making a name for themselves with Mexican-Asian fusion cuisine.

Lettuce wraps are a low carb, whole food alternative to tortillas. I’ll eat anything in a tortilla, I love tortillas, but sometimes a filling begs for the crispy freshness of an iceberg lettuce cup. Some fillings like Asian inspired meats and meat substitutes, like tofu, just taste better in simple vegetable wraps. Iceberg lettuce is the perfect shape but you can use collard green leaves, romaine and butter lettuces for wraps as well. Continue reading “Easy Korean Pork Lettuce Wraps, Mexican-Asian Fusion”

Mushroom Walnut Vegan Chorizo – Turn up the heat and make it Mexican

Mushroom walnut filling

 

Try this vegan chorizo, made with walnuts and mushrooms in any Mexican recipe for tacos, tostadas or tamales. I think it would be great in stuffed poblano, Baja zucchini boats or red bell peppers. I let the mixture rest in the refrigerator for a day and the flavor was even more delicious.

I topped tiny grilled flour tortillas with my spicy soy free, vegan chorizo, arugula, peperoncinis, red onion and tomatoes. This plant based mixture is reminiscent of chorizo and is sure to please any guest and keep the vegans nourished. Mushrooms are rich in Vitamin D and walnuts are a great source of protein, fiber and healthy fat. Your guests might appreciate a side serving of black or pinto beans, salsa and a bit of salty cheese for the lacto vegetarians or omnivores.

There are several inspiring recipes for mushroom and walnut fillings, both raw and cooked versions. The combination seems like a natural for bold Mexican spices, different fresh peppers, and dried chilies. Think what you could do with Italian or Indian spices!

Try them all. Here’s a few that I found after I thought I invented it. My inspiration came from my leftover chorizo seasoning and a produce bin full of mushrooms needing to be eaten.  I believe that there are no original stories or recipes in the world but always give credit when ever you find inspiration.

Vega:

Kyle:

Rawmazing:

I shared this at Meat Free Mondays
Mushroom walnut arugula tacos

 

[lt_recipe name=”Walnut Mushroom Vegan Chorizo” servings=”4 ” prep_time=”10 MIUNTES” cook_time=”10 MINUTES” total_time=”20 MINUTES ” difficulty=”Easy ” summary=”A fast weeknight vegan mushroom and walnut filling for tacos, stuffed peppers, or tamales. Use as a substitute for spicy meats. ” print=”yes” image= ingredients=”6 cups rough chopped cremimi or portobello mushrooms, about 1 pound;1 cup walnut pieces;1/2 cup chopped onions;2 cloves garlic minced;2 tablespoons oil oil;2 tablespoons chopped parsley;2 tablespoons ancho chili powder ;1 tablespoon smoked paprika;2 teaspoons ground cumin;1 teaspoon ground coriander;1/2 teaspoon sea salt or to taste;1/4 teaspoon cayenne;1 tablespoon red wine vinegar or to taste ” ]Chop mushrooms and walnuts, or pulse in the food processor into pea sized pieces. Set aside. Sauté onions and garlic in olive oil until translucent. Add seasonings through salt and mushrooms. Sauté for 10 minutes. Add a splash of vinegar to separate the flavors, more if indicated. Adjust salt. ;Serve warm in tortillas or use as a filling for any vegetarian dish. Stuff bell peppers, baked squashes or vegan tamales. [/lt_recipe]

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La Gringa’s Weekly Menu

La Gringa's weekly menu

Planning my meals around the available produce helps me use everything I’ve purchased without waste and allows me to create around the freshest ingredients. I print the menu and hang it on the refrigerator so that everyone knows the weekly plan. Of course, we don’t always stay on plan if no one feels like cooking or a date night develops. 😊

Here are this week’s farmer’s market and grocery store finds. Our farmer’s market in Northern Nevada has spring produce and lots of berries and stone fruits. As the weather warms, I will be able to buy most of my produce there.

Weekly menus

 weekly menu

Recipe links:

Baja Clam Chowder, coming soon
Mushroom walnut tacos, coming soon
Homemade Chorizo
Crashed potatoes with chorizo,
Margarita Salmon
Jalapeño poppers

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Chorizo Crashed Potatoes

Chorizo Crashed Potatoes

Chorizo Crashed PotatoesWho doesn’t love crashed potatoes? Now add spicy chorizo and you have my Baja version of patatas bravas, popular in Spain. These are a crispy potato explosion of Baja goodness. Pin these to your Mexican recipes to try. Easy and delicious.

According to ThePioneerWoman the original creator of Crashed Hot Potatoes was Jill Dupleix, a food writer from Australia and after you eat one you too will sing her praises.

For more amazing food writers follow me to Fiesta Friday where Angie hosts the best Fiesta link party this side of the Baja. While you’re at the party checkout the our co-hosts Jhuls and Monika and enjoy their websites.

The potatoes are deliciously crisp and I’ve re-created them by adding chorizo and a creamy salsa reminiscent of patatas bravas, a signature Spanish dish.  The patatas bravas is a deep fried potato dish which is served with a creamy spicy tomato sauce. These crispy baked potatoes are lower in fat and served with a simple salsa and mayonnaise drizzle giving them all the flavor of patatas bravas with less fat.  I used a generous splash of healthy olive oil.

[lt_recipe name=”Chorizo Crashed Potatoes” servings=”4″ prep_time=”45 MINUTES ” cook_time=”25 MINUTES ” total_time=”65 MINUTES ” difficulty=”Easy ” summary=”Crispy baked potatoes seasoned with cilantro, chorizo and topped with creamy salsa. All the flavors of patatas bravas with less fat. ” print=”yes” image=”http://mybajakitchen.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/06/image-52-225×300.jpeg” ingredients=”8 small yellow or red potatoes ;4 tablespoons olive oil;4 ounces Mexican chorizo;1/2 cup finely chopped cilantro, divided ;1 teaspoon sea salt, or to taste;1/2 cup prepared red salsa, or pico de gallo;1/4 cup mayonnaise ;1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper;Optional: crumbled cojita or feta cheese ” ]Boil potatoes until fork tender, about 25 minutes. Brown chorizo and set aside. Oil a baking sheet with olive oil.;Place boiled potatoes on the baking sheet and mash with a potato masher and twist to make a flattened bumpy “crashed” potato. Brush each potato with remaining olive oil and sprinkle with 1/4 cup of cilantro. Bake at 450 F oven for 15 minutes. Combine salsa and mayonnaise and set aside. Remove from oven and sprinkle with cooked chorizo and cheese if using, return to oven and bake for an 10 additional minutes. Garnish with remaining cilantro and a drizzle of creamy salsa. [/lt_recipe]

 

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