El Torito’s Black Bean Soup
- 12 oz. dried black beans
- 8 cups chicken or vegetable stock
- 2 teaspoons olive oil
- 1 onion, chopped
- 1 cup carrots, chopped
- 1 cup celery, chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 teaspoons dried oregano
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1 bay leaf
- ½ teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 3 tablespoons fresh lime juice
- Fresh cilantro (optional)
- Rinse and sort though black beans, discarding any that are shriveled or discolored.
- Place beans in a large stockpot.
- Cover beans with water and refrigerate to soak overnight.
- Drain beans and return to stockpot.
- Add stock and heat to boiling.
- Meanwhile, heat olive oil over medium−high heat in a large skillet.
- Add onion, carrot, celery and garlic and saute until tender, approximately 5 minutes.
- Add to stockpot along with oregano, thyme, bay leaf and cayenne pepper.
- Cover stockpot and reduce heat to simmer for 3 to 4 hours.
- Transfer soup to blender or food processor and puree to desired thickness.
- Just before serving add lime juice and garnish with a sprig of fresh cilantro, if desired.
- Add salt and pepper to taste and serve.
Olive Garden Fried Mozzarella
- 1 pound block of mozzarella cheese
- 2 eggs, beaten
- ¼ cup water
- 1½ cups Italian bread crumbs
- ½ teaspoon granulated garlic
- ½ teaspoon dried oregano
- ½ teaspoon dried basil
- ⅔ cup flour
- ⅓ cup corn starch
- Slice the block of cheese lengthwise into about 1/2 inch sections.
- Cut each section in half.
- Beat the eggs with water and set aside.
- Mix the bread crumbs, garlic, oregano, and basil and set aside.
- Blend the flour with corn starch and set aside.
- Heat vegetable oil for deep frying to 350F.
- Dip cheese in flour then in egg wash and then coat with bread crumbs.
- Place carefully in hot oil and fry until golden brown. (This should only take a matter of seconds, so you need to watch them closely)
- Drain on brown paper bags and serve with your favorite pasta sauce that has been warmed.
Applebee’s Spinach Pizza Appetizer
- 2 or 3 Pita Bread (whole)
- 1-10 oz. pkg frozen spinach
- ⅓ cup nutritional yeast
- 1 medium onion
- 5 or 6 plum tomatoes
- 8 oz. pkg fresh mushrooms
- 3-4 cloves garlic
- 1 teaspoon basil
- 1 teaspoon parsley
- 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- ½ – 1 cup rice milk
- 4 Tablespoon flour
- Thaw spinach completely, press out all water.
- Heat milk in saucepan.
- When hot but not boiling, stir in flour.
- Stir until sauce begins to thicken, turn heat down.
- Add nutritional yeast and spinach.
- Stir constantly until thick and gooey, only about 3−4 min.
- In separate pan, saute onion, garlic, until onion is tender.
- Stir in tomatoes, mushrooms, and spices.
- Serve with the meat.
- Saute until just done.
- Preheat oven to 425.
- Using a very sharp bread knife, split each pita bread so that you have two round flat pieces instead of one thick one.
- Place each piece of bread on a cookie sheet or pizza pan.
- Spread spinach sauce over each.
- Top with tomato mixture, being careful to avoid the juice.
- Bake for 5 to 7 min.
- Watch closely so that the edges of the pita don’t burn.
Sizzler Fried Shrimp
- 1 egg, beaten
- ½ cup milk (lowfat milk is okay)
- 1 cup flour, sifted
- 1 cup dry bread crumbs
- 1½ teaspoons salt
- ½ teaspoon dried basil
- ½ teaspoon dried parsley
- ⅛ teaspoon garlic powder
- ⅛ teaspoon onion powder
- 24 each jumbo shrimp, un−cooked, peeled and deveined
- Combine egg and milk in bowl. Set aside.
- Place flour in bowl. Set aside.
- Combine remaining dry ingredients in bowl. Set aside.
- Dip shrimp in flour, then in egg mixture, then in bread crumb mixture.
- Fry shrimp in 350 degree oil for 3−4 minutes.
- Drain on paper towels.
Chili’s Chicken Enchilada Soup
- ½ cup Vegetable oil
- ¼ cup Chicken base
- 3 cups diced Yellow Onions
- 2 tsp. ground Cumin
- 2 tsp. Chili Powder
- 2 tsp. granulated Garlic
- ½ tsp. Cayenne pepper
- 2 cups Masa Harina
- 4 quarts Water (divided)
- 2 cups crushed Tomatoes
- ½ lb. processed American cheese, cut in small cube
- 3 lb. cooked, cubed chicken
- In large pot, place oil, chicken base, onion and spices.
- Saute until onions are soft and clear, about 5 minutes.
- In another container, combine Masa Harina with 1 quart water.
- Stir until all lumps dissolve.
- Add to sauted onions, bring to boil.
- Once mixture starts to bubble, continue cooking 2−3 minutes, stirring constantly. This will eliminate any raw taste from Masa harina.
- Add remaining 3 quarts water to pot.
- Add tomatoes; let mixture return to boil stirring occasionally.
- Add cheese to soup. Cook stirring occasionally, until cheese melts.
- Add chicken; heat through.
- Serve and enjoy!