photo credit:  www.freedigitalphotos.net

photo credit: www.freedigitalphotos.net

My last newsletter was about hospitality, and in it I mentioned that I have 5 standby menus – meals that I know I can put together quickly should unexpected guests be invited into our home. These are:

  • Platter Meal:  cheeses, dips, veggie sticks, crackers and fruit.
  • Soup and fresh bread rolls (either bought or home-made)
  • BBQ meat and salads
  • Mexican Chicken Bake (recipe below)
  • Couscous and Sweet Potato salad

For desserts my quick and easy are:

  • frozen mango – diced and served defrosted, or whipped into an icecream
  • Eton’s Mess
  • Black Forest sauce and icecream (recipe below)

Mexican Chicken Bake

Adapted from a Family Circle recipe

Serves 6

Ingredients:

1-1.5 cups of uncooked rice – cooked

1 cooked chook – shredded meat (chunky) or 8 chicken thighs grilled

2cups (250g) grated cheese

300g can red kidney beans, drained, rinsed

3x 200g jars taco sauce*

Sour cream

*depending on who I’m cooking this for – sometimes I’ll use spicy, most times we use mild taco sauce as it is more family friendly.  It also works with pasta sauce.  Pasta sauce is a cheaper option, and just recently we found a pasta sauce with a spicy factor so I’ll be using that from now on.

  • Cook rice
  • Cook or shred chook
  • Drain and rinse kidney beans
  • Mix rice and kidney beans, in bottom of large casserole dish
  • Spread ½ cheese over rice
  • Layer chicken on top
  • Pour over sauce
  • Sprinkle remainder cheese
  • Cover and bake for 40-45 minutes or until sauce is bubbling and cheese is melted.

Instructions say to remove the cover for the last 5 minutes to brown the cheese – but I always forget!  Serve with sour cream

 

 

Black Forest Dessert Sauce

Serves 4 (I usually double this)

 

1 can black cherries in a saucepan – juice and all

¼ cup chocolate icream topping (this is a guess-timate!)

Bring to a gentle boil – stir gently

Cornflour to thicken (I don’t know measurements here – but say, start with a tablespoon of cornflour in a small bowl, mix with a little of the warm cherry juice until a smooth paste and then add slowly to the boiling mixture – stop as soon as the sauce is thick enough to coat a spoon.  If you add too much cornflour it becomes a pasty glug.)

Serve warm over icecream – of course you have to be ready to eat straight away ‘cause the icecream will melt!

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