Semi-Homemade Chips and Salsa

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A few weeks ago I had a Mom’s Night In with a few of my friends. We do this occasionally do this to gorge on tasty foods, a few beverages, and gab without kids around. And I am friends with some really good cooks so this last round had bacon dipped in chocolate, Snickers Pie, pumpkin mousse, grilled wings, spinach dip….the list goes on!

Then I realized that I needed to make something to add to this amazing spread. Um…errr…my mind went blank….my motivation has long since jumped out the window…Pintrest was failing me because I was always missing one or two ingredients.  I pulled out my white flag and announced that I was stopping at the store for chips and salsa. I HATED doing that. Before I started working full time during the week I baked constantly. There was always a fun muffin or tasty cookie to try. Notsomuch these days.

The day of our party rolled around and my husband and oldest munchkin were out at Free Comic Book Day and the new Spiderman 2 movie during the day so it was just my Diva and the “Baby.” (I really have no right to call him a Baby anymore…he is almost three and now sings me songs accompanied by bongos…he will always be my snuggle monkey baby). I had zero motivation to pry us out of our PJs and head to Kroger (or more than likely Target because it is more fun!) so I set the kiddos up with some Sofia the First and scoured the kitchen for what I could make.

Salsa

Salsa

And then it hit me…I could MAKE chips and salsa!! We happen to have 2 packs of small flour tortillas (my kids prefer them to bread sandwiches) so I looked up a quick recipe and made it happen. As always I took the recipe and made it my own.

Oil, Salt, and Tortillas

Oil, Salt, and Tortillas

First I preheated the oven to 350 degree and started to chop up a pack of flour tortillas into triangles.

Cut, Chop. Slice.

Cut, Chop. Slice.

Then I dabbed them with some olive oil…the recipe said to use cooking spray, but I just couldn’t bring myself to do that.

Dab.

Dab.

This is as oily as these chips got.

This is as oily as these chips got.

I had so many that I needed 2 cookie sheets...I need some new cookie sheets. Don't judge me!

I had so many that I needed 2 cookie sheets…I need some new cookie sheets. Don’t judge me!

While I was laying out and oiling the tortillas my kitchen space got invaded. Apparently mommy jamming to her 90’s pop station on Pandora was more entertaining than Sofia so my little Bub decided to come dance!

He grabbed a clean cooking utensil and started dancing.

He grabbed a clean cooking utensil and started dancing.

He also swipped a few triangles of tortilla.

He also swipped a few triangles of tortilla.

I kept trying to take video, but the music would stop and so the dancing would stop.

I kept trying to take video, but the music would stop and so the dancing would stop.

Once we were done dancing I attached the chips with salt! I LOVE a salty chip. And then off to the oven they went for roughly 12-15 minutes.

While the chips were cooking up I shoo’d my little friend back to his viewing of Sofia and I gathered my ingredients for salsa.

2 Ears of Corn, a can of Black Beans, a can of Salsa tomatoes, and coffee...duh

2 Ears of Corn, a can of Black Beans, a can of Salsa tomatoes, and coffee…duh

First I chopped the ends off of the ears of corn. This is a little tough, BUT it will make cutting the kernels off of the ear easier!

The smell of fresh cut corn makes me happy.

The smell of fresh cut corn makes me happy.

Just look at the corn juice on the knife! YUM! throw your corn in a mixing bowl (or even a serving bowl).

Next, I opened and rinsed a can of black beans. I used about 1/2 – 3/4 of the can for the salsa…there was a lot more corn in two ears than I was expecting!

Beans may not be Paleo (actually this post is about as non-Paleo as possible) but they are cheap and can fill out a meal on a budget...they also make GREAT brownies.

Beans may not be Paleo (actually this post is about as non-Paleo as possible) but they are cheap and can fill out a meal on a budget…they also make GREAT brownies.

Then I opened up the can of salsa tomatoes and threw them in the bowl. Then I sprinkled a little salt on top and mixed everything up.

I got so lucky that we had salsa tomatoes in the pantry...I thought I was going to need to use diced tomatoes with jalapenos.

I got so lucky that we had salsa tomatoes in the pantry…I thought I was going to need to use diced tomatoes with jalapenos.

By the time I was done mixing this up the chips were perfectly baked.

I think that the only thing that might have been missing was some cilantro, but it wasn’t that big of a deal. Still totally tasty.

So when Hubs and the oldest midget got home I grabbed my goodies, picked up my Bestie, and enjoyed Mom’s Night In at our friend’s house. Of course I forgot to take pictures…we were having too much fun having some very interesting conversations about our kids.

Until next time, friends!!

I really need a logo or catch phrase or something….

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Sunday Dinner During the Week

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AKA A whole chicken in the crockpot!

Now I know that some people might get a little nervous putting a whole chicken in the crockpot…and I don’t blame them! Those guys have a lot of little bones hiding in there! It usually ends with me picking gingerly through the meat to make sure that my kiddos don’t end up with a plate full of bones, BUT the flavor is ever so worth it!

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Doesn’t that just look amazing?! So simple!

I’m drooling all over again looking at that picture! The package of Milanos that I am destroying while I type are just not doing the trick!

So the first step is to gather your ingredients.

1) Whole chicken – I usually buy these on clearance at Kroger (and a lot of times I luck into an organic chicken!) for under $7. IF I can get my kids to eat properly one of these 5ish pound chickens would be the perfect size, but since they will only push around the yummy food that I put on their plates I frequently get 2 meals out of it.

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2) Olive oil

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3) Seasoning of choice! I chose to try one of the seasonings that I for from the Culinology® in Portland a few weeks ago. You can really use any seasoning that your family likes. This one has a bit of a kick which we enjoy.

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After you have gathered everything (seriously, that is all there is!) I spray down the crockpot and voila!

Olive Oil cooking spray

Olive Oil cooking spray

Next, I generously sprinkled the frozen chicken with seasoning. I made sure he had a good solid coat so that the flavoring went all the way through! After seasoning my young friend I added a drizzle of olive oil. I’m Italian…everything has at least olive oil and/or garlic. I decided not to add garlic this time because I really wanted to test the new seasoning.

Seasoned and Oiled Whole Chicken

Seasoned and Oiled Whole Chicken

Once he was all set I put the lid on and put the chicken in the fridge…that’s right, I did this the night before so that the next day my husband (who works from home) could turn it on after he got our son on the bus. Now, most crock pots that I have seen have 2 settings, low and high., but our crock pot has 5 (2 low, 2 high, and warm). I don’t remember who got us this for our wedding almost 7 years ago…wait WHAT!?…but I love them forever for it because I use it constantly!

So anyway…hubs turns the crockpot on the lowest setting (10 hours) and gets tortured by the smell all day 🙂 When I got home I realized that I had not thrown any veggies in the crockpot and man cannot live on meat alone (well, except bacon…duh) so I found some fresh green beans from our Farmers Market Basket. I gave them a rinse and threw them in a skillet with some coconut oil and salt to cook. Nice and simple…nothing fancy…and then VOILA!

Yummo Chicken

Yummo Chicken

Chicken in the crockpot literally falls off all of the bones. It is amazing. And the seasoning was perfection. We placed a small amount on the kids plates (knowing that there wasn’t a chance they would eat it, but maybe they would try it) and then went to town!

Chicken and Green Beans

Chicken and Green Beans

Seriously delicious and simple!

Seriously delicious and simple! And yes, I am using this picture again!

This dinner was exactly what was needed after working 8 hours and enduring a horrible commute in both directions. It left me full and happy without anything gross.

What is your go to weeknight meal? I am always looking to expand my options and I would love to hear what you are cooking!