Chicken Paprikash: Easy Chicken & Pasta Dish

This dish can be thrown together easy, with some pasta on hand, and a bit of sour cream, chicken, and spice. This version is a newer, easier, healthier version of a classic. The sour cream adds a bit of fat, but it’s still lower-fat than the original recipe, and it seems to be a crowd-pleaser. For a more traditional flavor, as found in authentic Hungarian recipes, toasted caraway seeds can be added. Serves 4.

Chicken w/ Hungarian style Paprikash sauce, over pasta

INGREDIENTS

• 3 to 4 c. cooked, boned chicken
• 1 green pepper
• 1 red pepper
• 12 oz. or so dry fettuccini (or choice of pasta)
• 1/4 c. olive oil
• 1/4 c. flour
• 1 TBS. paprika
• 1 tsp. salt
• 1/2 tsp. pepper
• 1/2 TBS. chopped, fresh garlic
• 1 1/2 c. chicken stock
• 1/2 c. sour cream
• (optional) 1 tsp. toasted caraway seed

Chicken for this dish is best “pulled”, or torn, into pieces, as more sauce clings to it this way. Prepare the chicken ahead of time, or grill 3 or 4 half breasts, to yield: > 3 to 4 c. cooked, boned chicken, pulled (torn) into 1 to 2″ chunks

Also prepare peppers, chopping into 1/2″ diced pieces: > 1 green pepper > 1 red pepper

Grill the diced peppers in very hot skillet for a few minutes, in a little olive oil, with a splash of water to steam them a bit. Set cooked peppers aside.

Cook the following until tender, rinsing, cooling, and tossing with a bit of olive oil to keep it from clumping: > 12 oz. or so dry fettuccini (or your choice of pasta)

In iron skillet or saucepan, mix: > 1/4 c. olive oil > 1/4 c. flour > 1 TBS. paprika > 1 tsp. salt > 1/2 tsp. pepper > 1/2 TBS. chopped, fresh garlic

Slowly add: > 1 1/2 c. chicken stock

Bring mixture to a boil. Boil and stir for 2 minutes. Turn off heat, adding last: > 1/2 c. sour cream > The cooked chicken chunks > Diced, cooked peppers > (optional: 1 tsp. toasted caraway seed, crushed)

Serve over the cooked pasta, with a side dish of steamed green vegetables, as desired, for extra color.

Chicken Piccata w/Lemon, Capers: Elegant but Easy Enough

This elegant dinner entree has a light, flavorful sauce, with capers giving it a distinct, piquant flavor. The method is streamlined for making a simple recipe. Plan 1/3 to 1/2 lb. serving per person. Serves 6-4.

Chicken Breast w/ Caper Sauce, lemon, garlicINGREDIENTS

  • Approx. 3 lb. boneless, skinless chicken breast (about 8 large half breasts)
  • 1 c. chicken stock
  • 1/4 c. white wine
  • 1/4 c. lemon juice
  • 1/4 tsp. salt for sauce (omit salt if using canned, salted chicken stock)
  • 1/2 c. oat flour (sub wheat flour or other, if desired)
  • 1 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 tsp. pepper
  • 1/2 tsp. paprika
  • 2 TBS. parmesan
  • 1/2 TBS. chopped garlic
  • 1 TBS. olive oil, plus extra for grilling chicken
  • 2 TBS. butter
  • 1/4 c. capers, drained
  • Lemon slices for garnish
  • 1/4 c. chopped parsley

PREPARATION

1. Ahead of time, in sauce pan, reduce sauce by boiling down liquids by half: > 1 c. chicken stock > 1/4 c. white wine > 1/4 c. lemon juice > 1/4 tsp. salt for sauce (omit salt if using canned, salted chicken stock)

2. Set reduced sauce aside. Mix dry ingredients together for dredging chicken: > 1/2 c. flour > 1 1/2 tsp. salt > 1/4 tsp. pepper > 1/2 tsp. paprika > 2 TBS. parmesan

3. Prepare chicken breasts by pounding them to about 1/2-inch thick; they’ll be more tender, and will cook evenly. A meat hammer works great for this!

4. Get skillet hot, adding a touch of olive oil when hot. Dip the hammered chicken breasts into the flour mix, and grill on both sides until golden and cooked through. Set aside to warm in oven until serving time.

5. After cooking chicken, prepare sauce. To the same skillet used for the chicken, add: > 1/2 TBS. chopped fresh garlic

6. Heat just so garlic can cook a bit, without burning. To the garlic, add: > 1 TBS. olive oil > 1 TBS. flour

7. To the oil/flour mix, add the reduced sauce liquid, bring back to a boil. Finally, remove from heat and stir in until melted: > 2 TBS. butter

8. Arrange grilled chicken breast on plate, add sauce, and garnish with: > 1/4 c. capers, drained > 1/4 c. chopped parsley > thin-sliced lemon

9. Serve with vegetables and a favorite pasta or rice.

Chicken Putenesca, w/ Savory Sauce of Tomato, Greek Olives

These flavors are bold; a goat cheese stuffing holds its own against a tomato sauce containing Greek olives and a dash of anchovies. Anchovy paste can be used, or fine-chop a small can of whole anchovies, freezing the leftovers to preserve flavor. Plan 4-6 oz. of meat per serving; this recipe serves 6 or so.

Stuffed Chicken w/ Goat Cheese and Spinach

INGREDIENTS

  • Approx. 3 lb. boneless, skinless chicken breast (about 6 half breasts)
  • 8 oz. goat cheese (soft style)
  • 6 oz. (small bag) spinach
  • 1/2 c. fine bread crumbs* (see below for gluten-free substitute)
  • 1/2 TBS. chopped garlic
  • 2 TBS. olive oil (plus some oil for sautéing)
  • One 28-oz. can tomatoes, chopped
  • 2/3 c. (or more) Greek olives (about 3-4 oz.)
  • 2 tsp. anchovy paste
  • 1/4 c. chopped parsley for garnish

PREPARATION

1. Prepare chicken breasts by hammering to about 1/2-inch thick. A meat hammer (with a large surface area, usually somewhat “spiked”) will tenderize the meat and thin it out, so the meat will cook through but stay tender. Use: > 3 lb. chicken breasts

2. To each piece of meat, spread the top with goat cheese. Use: > 8 oz. goat cheese

3. To half the pieces, add a handful of spinach on top of the goat cheese and top with another breast piece (goat cheese facing in). The spinach will shrink considerable after cooking, but will seem bulky beforehand. Use: > 6 oz. spinach

4. These “stuffed” chicken breasts are actually more of a “sandwich”, which makes them easier to deal with. Dip the top and bottoms of each “sandwich” into the fine bread crumbs (or seasoned oat flour mix, as mentioned at end of recipe). Use: > 1/2 c. bread crumbs (or oat flour mix)

5. In a hot skillet, add a splash of oil and the layered chicken-goat-spinach pieces. Grill until golden brown on one side; flip to brown other side. Depending on size and thickness of the chicken breasts, they will take 15 minutes (or more) to cook through. Remove the browned, “stuffed” chicken to a Pyrex (or other) casserole dish and finish cooking in a 350-degree oven until cooked through.

6. Meanwhile, prepare the easy tomato sauce. In a hot saucepan, add the oil and garlic, turning pan off to let the garlic “steep”. The garlic should only get “transparent”, or to a light golden color. If the pan’s too hot and the garlic starts to darken, add some of the canned tomato to cool it down a little. In the pre-heated saucepan, add: > 2 TBS. olive Oil > 1/2 TBS. chopped garlic

7. After a few minutes of steeping, add the remaining sauce ingredients and bring to a boil: > 28 oz. can tomatoes, chopped > 1/3 c. or so Greek olives, pitted and quartered > 2 tsp. anchovy paste (or chopped anchovy)

8. To serve, top with cooked stuffed chicken with the tomato sauce, and a sprinkling of parsley. A side of vegetables and a favorite pasta or rice rounds out the meal.

* Substitute for bread crumbs: Use a seasoned mixture of “oat flour” (oatmeal is processed until fine in a food processor or blender). Favorite herbs and a dash of salt can be added, for a whole-grain, non-gluten substitute for those bread crumbs. (Non-gluten if you buy the right oatmeal!)

Beef Stroganoff: Budget Recipe w/ Chuck Roast- Delicious!

This classic recipe is sped up by using a pressure cooker to simmer the beef, which also seals in flavor. A crock pot, left on low all day, can also be used (or cooked in a low-heat oven). With a few extra ingredients, like carrot, red wine and tomato paste, a simple Beef Bourguignon can be made for variety. Serves 6.

Grateful-Table-Beef-StroganoffINGREDIENTS

  • 2 lb. beef, boneless chuck roast or similar cut
  • Oil or butter, as needed, for browning (coconut or olive oil)
  • 3 c. beef broth (or substitute chicken broth)
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 medium onion
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • 1 tsp. thyme
  • 3 TBS. flour
  • 1 lb. mushrooms
  • 1 tsp. salt (less if using salted broth)
  • 1/2 c. sour cream or yogurt
  • 12 oz. wide egg noodles

PREPARATION

1. Cut into 2″ cubes: > 2 lb. chuck roast

2. Get a large iron skillet quite hot. Brown beef cubes in a little olive oil in the skillet—don’t crowd the pan or the beef won’t brown. As pieces get browned, add to oven-proof pot, crock pot, or pressure cooker, if available. Set skillet aside to use for cooking the onions.

3. Microwave (or heat on stove) until hot: > 3 c. beef or chicken broth > 2 bay leaves

4. Add hot broth to the pot/pressure cooker. Cover the pot; let beef cook until tender. This will take 2 1/2 to 3 hours in a 375 degree oven, or 8 hours or so in a crock pot on low heat, or 40 minutes at medium pressure in a pressure cooker. While beef is cooking, sauté onions in the skillet used to brown the beef. To hot skillet, add: > Olive oil as needed > 1 lg. onion, chopped

5. Turn heat down, cooking onions slowly, until sweet and tender. At this point, the pan of onions can be refrigerated until beef’s done cooking, if using the oven or crock pot. When ready to assemble the dish, continue with remaining steps. To the cooked onions, add: > 3 garlic cloves, minced > 3 TBS. flour > 1 tsp. thyme

6. Mix garlic, flour and thyme into the onion until smooth. Set aside. In separate pan, sauté mushrooms. Don’t crowd the pan or they won’t brown. Do batches, adding browned mushrooms to the onion/garlic/flour pan. Use: > 1 lb. mushrooms, sliced

7. When meat is done, pour some of the liquid into the onion/mushroom/garlic/flour pan. Mix until smooth, then add remaining liquid. Turn pan on and bring almost to a boil, so that the flour will thicken it. Cook for 2 minutes. Mixture should look saucy (boil it longer to reduce liquid if it’s too thin). Add last: > salt to taste (1 tsp. or so) > 1/2 c. sour cream or yogurt

8. Serve over cooked pasta, garnish with chopped parsley.

Beef Bourguignon: Classic Recipe, Streamlined

This take-off on Julia Child’s recipe uses a few shortcuts to make dinner easier. Bacon can be used, but is optional; the recipe’s still great without it! A pressure cooker will cook the meat tender in 40 minutes. Or, a slow cooker or crock pot can be used; meat cooks throughout the day and is ready to use in the recipe by dinner time. Serves 6.

Chuck roast, red wine, and veggies over pastaINGREDIENTS

  • 2 c. beef broth (or chicken broth)
  • 1 1/2 c. red wine
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 lb. boneless chuck roast
  • Optional: 6 oz. diced, raw bacon
  • Olive oil, as needed, for browning
  • 1 onion
  • 1 lg. carrot
  • 1 lb. mushroooms
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • 1 tsp. thyme
  • 3 TBS. flour
  • 1 TBS. tomato paste
  • 1 tsp. salt (or less if using salted broth)
  • Potatoes to serve with stew, or 1 lb. wide egg noodles, cooked

PREPARATION

1. Begin to get broth hot in oven-proof pot, crock pot, or pressure cooker. Use: > 2 c. beef or chicken broth > 1 1/2 c. red wine > 2 bay leaves

2. Cut into 2″ cubes: > 2 lb. chuck roast

3. Heat a large iron skillet. If using bacon, cook the bacon in the skillet until somewhat browned but still tender: > 6 oz. diced, raw bacon (optional)

4. Pour off some of the bacon fat; add the bacon bits to the hot broth.

5. Brown beef cubes in the same pan, using a little olive oil as needed. Don’t crowd the pan or the beef won’t brown. As pieces get browned, add to oven-proof pot, crock pot, or pressure cooker. Set skillet aside to use for cooking the onions. Use: > the 2 lb. cubed chuck roast

6. Broth/red wine mixture should cover the beef in the pot. Cover the pot; let beef cook until tender. This will take 2 1/2 to 3 hours in a 375 degree oven, or 8 hours or so in a crock pot on low heat, or 40 minutes at medium pressure in a pressure cooker. While beef is cooking, sauté onions in the skillet used to brown the beef. To hot skillet, add: > Olive oil as needed > 1 lg. onion, chopped

7. Turn heat down, cooking onions slowly, until sweet and tender. At this point, the pan of onions can be refrigerated until beef’s done cooking, if using the oven or crock pot. When ready to assemble the dish, continue with remaining steps. To the cooked onions, add: > 3 garlic cloves, minced > 3 TBS. flour > 1 tsp. thyme > salt to taste (1 tsp. or so) > 1 TBS. tomato paste

8. Mix ingredients into the onion until smooth. Set aside.

9. Prepare carrots, cutting into rounds. In separate pan, cook carrots. Add water to the pan, letting them steam some. As they become tender, add olive oil, browning carrots a bit to develop their sweetness. Use: > 1 lg. carrot, sliced into coin-like pieces

10. Add cooked carrots to the onion mixture. Next, sauté mushrooms. Don’t crowd the pan or they won’t brown. Do batches, adding browned mushrooms to the onion/garlic/flour pan. Use: > 1 lb. mushrooms, sliced

11. When meat is done, pour some of the liquid into the the pan of veggies/flour. Mix until smooth, then add remaining liquid. Turn pan on and bring almost to a boil, so that the flour thickens it. Cook for 2 minutes. Mixture should look saucy (boil it longer to reduce liquid if it’s too thin).

12. Serve with potatoes, or over cooked pasta; garnish with chopped parsley.

Broccoli Potato Soup

Broccoli adds nutrients to a meal and potatoes are a healthy way to thicken the soup without using the flour typically used. It makes this a gluten-free recipe, and if you leave off the parmesan garnish, it’s vegan too! Serves 6-8.

Grateful-Table-Broccoli-Potato-SoupINGREDIENTS

  • 2 broccoli crowns (stems too, if available)
  • Optional: 1/2 c. leaves or tops of celery
  • 3 lb. potatoes, peeled, cubed
  • 1/3 c. virgin olive oil
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • Parmesan cheese for garnishing

PREPARATION

1. Cut broccoli into chunks, then add enough boiling water to broccoli in a pot to cover; simmer until tender. When done, reserve broth (you can then use that broth to cook the potatoes in, or save it to thin the soup out with later. Use: > 2 broccoli crowns (chunks of stems can be used for flavor, and discarded afterward) > Optional: 1/2 c. leaves or tops of celery

2. Also, in a separate pot, cook in hot broth or water (just enough to cover the potatoes): > 3 lb. potatoes, peeled, cubed

3. Remove any chunks of stems from the pot of cooked broccoli; process the broccoli tips, then add the cooked potatoes and puree the mixture some more. An immersion blender works well; if a processor is used, be careful not to process the potatoes for too long, as they can get too starchy if over-processed.

4. Blend or whisk into the pureed veggies: > 1/3 c. virgin olive oil > salt and pepper to taste

5. When ready to serve, reheat soup and garnish with Parmesan cheese.

Tomato Basil Soup w/ Lemon, Orange & Bay Leaf

Not like the typical canned “Cream of Tomato” soup, this gluten-free recipe is a light and healthy variation. Leave the pesto out for a dairy-free, vegan recipe, if desired. It’s easy to make and has a fresh combination of flavors that complement the tomatoes. Serves 6 or so.

Grateful-Table-Tomato-Basil-SoupINGREDIENTS

  • 1 lg. onion
  • 2 carrots
  • 2-4 bay leaves
  • Zest of 1/2 lemon
  • 16 oz. can tomato pieces (or 2 c. fresh, skins off)
  • 6 oz. can tomato paste
  • 1/4 c. Virgin olive oil
  • 2 tsp. salt
  • 2 TBS. frozen orange juice concentrate (or zest of half an orange)
  • Pesto or fresh basil (or sub 1 tsp. dried basil)

PREPARATION

1. Simmer until tender (1 hour or so): > 1 lg. onion, in chunks > 2 carrots, in chunks > 2 to 4 bay leaves

2. Set broth aside once veggies are cooked; remove bay leaves. Add to the pot: > Zest of 1/2 lemon

3. Process the above until smooth, using immersion blender or food processor. Add the following and process again: > 16-oz. can tomato pieces (or 2 c. fresh tomatoes, skins removed*)

4. Blend in (with immersion blender, or with processor running): > 1/4 c. olive oil > 2 tsp. salt > 2 TBS. frozen orange juice concentrate

5. Reheat the soup, thinning with water as needed. To serve, top with a spoonful of pesto, drizzled on, or add fresh chopped basil. Optional: Top with dollop of sour cream or creme fraiche, whirled in just a bit.

* To use fresh tomatoes, bring a half pot of water to a boil. Core tomatoes, score the bottoms with an “x”, plunge into the hot water for a few minutes, with the heat off. Pour off hot water and cool the tomatoes in a pot of cold water; skin should slip right off.

Jell-O Salad: Natural Style, Fruit-Juice Sweetened

When my granddaughter was quite young, I wanted to prepare a jello recipe minus the artificial colorings, flavorings and sugar. It would also be perfect for my elderly in-laws, who needed easy-to-chew foods. The recipe proved popular with all.

Grateful-Table-Jell-O-Mold-Jello-MoldWhen purchasing frozen juice concentrates, be sure to get 100% fruit juices. Use favorite flavors, but watch out for impostor juices that are loaded with high-fructose corn syrup.

Serves 8-10.

INGREDIENTS

  • 1/3 c. (+ 1/3 c. more, or water, for less sweet) frozen cherry juice concentrate
  • 1/3 c. (+ 1/3 c. more, or water, for less sweet) frozen orange juice concentrate (pulp-free)
  • 1/3 c. (+ 1/3 c. more, or water, for less sweet) frozen grape juice concentrate
  • 5 pkg. (5 TBS.) unflavored gelatin total (1 for each of the three flavors, plus 2 for pineapple/cream layer)
  • 2 c. boiling water (1/2 c. for each of the 3 flavors, plus for the pineapple/cream)
  • 2/3 c.frozen pineapple juice concentrate
  • 1 c. cream
  • Grapes or berries for garnish, optional

PREPARATION

1. For this recipe, let get to room temperature, in three separate ceramic bowls (large soup bowls work): > 1/3 c. frozen cherry juice concentrate (in one bowl) > 1/3 c. frozen orange juice concentrate (pulp-free) (in a second bowl) > 1/3 c. frozen grape juice concentrate (in a third bowl)

2. Soften gelatin by sprinkling into each bowl: > 1 pkg. unflavored gelatin for each of the three flavors

3. After 5 minutes or so, add to softened gelatin/fruit juice: > 1/2 c. boiling water

4. Stir until gelatin dissolves. Though adding boiling water, it is best not to bring gelatin mixtures back up to boiling, as a stronger odor may occur. Gelatin does have a smell, but that smell isn’t really noticeable once other ingredients are added. It does add protein, and it is valuable for setting up jello-style desserts. (Look for agar-agar to substitute for the gelatin, if desired.)

5. Last, add to each bowl: > 1/3 c. more of same concentrate, OR water, for a less-sweet jello

6. Pour each flavor into its own small loaf pan (5″x3″ works well). Let set up in refrigerator for several hours.

7. When jell-o loafs are firm, make the pineapple jell-o. Into larger ceramic bowl, measure and let get to room temperature: > 2/3 c. frozen pineapple juice concentrate

8. Soften gelatin by sprinkling into the bowl: > 2 pkg. gelatin

9. After 5 minutes or so, add to softened gelatin: > 1/2 c. boiling water

10. Stir until gelatin dissolves. Last, add: > 1 c. cream

11. Refrigerate the pineapple mixture just twenty minutes or so, to get to the consistency of thin yogurt. Cut the loaf pans of flavored jell-o into 1-inch cubes, gently folding into pineapple-cream mix, pouring into a ring-shaped mold. Let set up until completely firm, half a day or longer. (Make a day ahead, if desired) Before serving, briefly set the mold into a sink of hot water, just to warm the outside of the pan, moving quickly to invert it upside-down onto a plate. Garnish with grapes or berries if desired. Cut and serve!

PS I love this person’s review of Great Lakes Unflavored Kosher Gelatin on Amazon. From grass-fed cows; several notches above Knox gelatin…

Pecan Pear Salad w/ Poppy Seed Dressing: Upscale Waldorf

The Poppy Seed dressing below can be simply mixed up in a bowl, hand-whisking the other ingredients into the olive oil- no blender clean-up! Using the stirring method is convenient, especially when making a smaller batch of the dressing.

Grateful-Table-Pecan-Pear-Salad-w-Poppy-Seed-Dressing-Waldorf-StyleBosc pears have a firm, crunchy texture, although other pears or apples, or even dried fruits can substitute in a pinch. Vary the salad by leaving out the blue cheese or replacing with crumbled goat cheese. Serves 8-10  (with extra dressing).

INGREDIENTS

  • 3/4 c. sugar
  • 1/3 c. white vinegar
  • 2 tsp. prepared Dijon, or similar mustard
  • 1 scant tsp. salt
  • 1 c. olive oil
  • 1/2 Tbs. poppy seeds
  • 2 bags of mixed baby greens
  • 2 or 3 thin-sliced pears, dipped in lemon (or sub apples)
  • 2/3 c. pecans, toasted (or raw)
  • (Optional) 4 oz. blue cheese, crumbled

PREPARATION

1. For dressing, heat 30 seconds in microwave, until sugar dissolves when stirred: > 3/4 c. sugar > 1/3 c. white vinegar

2. Use a blender (or immersion blender) to mix dressing, or hand whisk in a bowl. Mix well with the dissolved sugar/vinegar mix: > 2 tsp. prepared Dijon, or similar mustard > 1 scant tsp. salt

3. Last, blend in: > 1 c. olive oil > 1/2 Tbs. poppy seeds

4. This will make enough dressing for two big salads. Use about half of the dressing over the following, reserving the rest for another salad: > 2 bags of mixed baby greens > 2 or 3 thin-sliced pears, dipped in lemon > 2/3 c. pecans, toasted if desired > (Optional) 4 oz. blue cheese, crumbled

Black Bean Chili: Easy Vegetarian Soup

Make extra of this to store in the freezer for quick last-minute meals; healthy, nourishing, economical, and tasty. Freeze portions in plastic wrap, and microwave later for soup or burritos. Add tortillas, perhaps avocados, cheese, and tomato, for a simple dinner.

(See notes below for a variation, using Pinto beans.)

Grateful-Table-Black-Bean-ChiliMany recipes call for canned black beans, but it’s easy to start them from scratch. Dry beans are most economical too, and organic beans are often available at health food stores. This recipe starts out thick; just add water when heating up, to desired thickness. Leave off any dairy products to make it vegan, or top with grated cheese, sour cream, and fresh chopped tomatoes as desired. This mix is versatile; use for burritos, tostadas, and enchiladas. Serves 7-8.

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 lb. black beans
  • 3-4 c. chopped yellow onions
  • 2 TBS. minced garlic
  • Olive oil for sautéing onions
  • 1/4 c. dry basil
  • 1/4 c. dry oregano
  • 2 TBS. cumin seed
  • 1/2 c. tomato paste
  • 1 TBS. salt
  • 1 TBS. paprika
  • 1/4 tsp. cayenne
  • Optional: Grated Cheddar cheese, sour cream, and cilantro

PREPARATION

1. Bring to a boil, then simmer 1-2 hours, until tender: > 1 lb. black beans > approx. 2 qt. boiling water

2. Strain cooked beans, return to pot and mash, leaving some beans whole. A potato masher or immersion blender works, or put on an oven mitt, cover that with a clean plastic bag, and mash the drained beans by hand. Set aside. In iron skillet, saute’ the following on medium heat until tender (an hour or so): > 3-4 c. chopped yellow onions > 2 TBS. minced garlic > olive oil (about 3 TBS.)

3. Meanwhile, in a hot, dry skillet, stir the following until toasted, setting aside when done: > 1/4 c. each, dry basil > 1/4 c. each, dry oregano > 2 TBS. whole cumin seed

4. Finally, mix the following all together: > Cooked, mashed beans > Sauteed onions and garlic > Toasted herb mix > 1/2 c. tomato paste > 1 TBS. each, salt and paprika > 1/4 tsp. cayenne

5. For Chili, add water to achieve desired thickness, sprinkling w/ grated cheddar cheese and sour cream, or use as is in burritos, etc.

VARIATION

For variety, substitute pinto beans (or other favorite) for black beans. Substitute 2 TBS. chili powder for the oregano, basil, cumin seed, cayenne and paprika. A delicious side dish (like healthy-style refried beans), or a comforting, nourishing soup (just add water).