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PBS LearningMedia
Melinda's Garden Moments
Friday, 04 May 2012 13:50

Delicious Discoveries: Cinco de Mayo

Today I’m taking you in the kitchen for a festive Cinco de Mayo feat! Always celebrated on the fifth of May, Cinco de Mayo is a festive and fun holiday that is celebrated not just in Mexico but largely throughout the United States as a way to honor and remember the first day of Mexico’s independence. Since cooking and food is such an important part of Latin culture, why not celebrate this Cinco de Mayo by preparing this great recipe for your family and friends.


Try my recipe for Two Chili, Chicken and Cheesy Enchiladas 


Two Chili, Chicken and Cheesy Enchiladas


15 large tomatillos, outer paper skin and top stems removed then washed

2 jalapenos, top stems removed

2 poblano chilies, top stems removed

8 cloves of garlic, peeled

2 yellow onions, quartered

½ cup extra virgin olive oil

2 teaspoons salt, kosher

1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1 teaspoon cumin

4 chicken breasts, skinless and boneless

3 limes, juiced

1/8 cup white vinegar

¼  - ½ cup warm water

2 cups Monterey jack cheese

12 whole wheat flour tortillas, preferably corn and flour blend


Preheat your oven to 400 degrees. While the oven warms up, peel and wash your tomatillos and remove the stem from the top. Place the tomatillos on a sheet tray along with the jalapenos, poblanos, garlic cloves and onion pieces. Drizzle with some of the olive oil and season with salt, pepper, and cumin.  Place the chicken breasts in a small baking dish and squeeze the lime juice over the chicken, and then drizzle with a bit of olive oil and season with salt, pepper and cumin.
  Place the vegetables and chicken in the oven and roast both at the same time until the chicken is cooked through and the vegetables are browned and softened, about 35 minutes.

Remove the chicken and vegetables from the oven and let cool slightly for 10 minutes. Once cool, shred the chicken using two forks and set the shredded meat aside in a small bowl. Next place all of the vegetables in a blender with the vinegar and blend to puree. If the mixture needs some liquid add warm water a little at a time, blending aftereach addition of water. Once a smooth salsa consistency is achieved pour this delicious green enchilada sauce in a shallow dish. To begin rolling the enchiladas, coat the bottom of a (11x13) glass casserole dish with a few ladles of the enchilada sauce to cover. Dip one tortilla into the enchilada sauce to coat completely then place on a plate and sprinkle the inside with a bit of shredded chicken and a bit of jack cheese, and then roll it tight and place it inside the casserole dish. Continue filling and rolling the enchiladas and layering them in the casserole dish until the dish is full and you’ve used all of your tortillas. Pour the remaining sauce over the enchiladas and sprinkle a line of cheese down the center of the enchiladas. Bake these in the oven for 25 minutes just until they are warmed through and the sauce and cheese is bubbly on top. Happy Cinco de Mayo! 

Published in Delicious Discoveries
Friday, 27 April 2012 14:07

Delicious Discoveries: Sweet Springtime

Today I’m taking you in the kitchen for a sweet springtime recipe using this seasons most beloved fruit, sweet Bing cherries. Cherries are in season during the late spring months and both yellow and Bing varieties can be easily found at farmers markets and grocery stores in and around your neighborhood. When picking yellow cherries, look for a firm plump exterior with a red blush to them, whereas the Bing varieties should have a deep, dark red almost black color to their flesh. Do not be afraid to ask for a taste at your farmers market or grocery store. Cherries are available from April through June.

Try my recipe for Individual Brown Butter Bing cherry Sweet Quiche for a sweet, tangy treat to share with family or friends. 

Individual Brown Butter Bing cherry Sweet Quiche

Flaky Pastry Crust:

2 ½ cup all purpose flour, sifted

1 teaspoon salt

1 cup butter

4 oz cream cheese

4 oz mascarpone cheese

½ cup cream

In a small bowl combine the sifted flour with the salt and set aside. In a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment combine the butter with the cream cheese and mascarpone cheese. Mix together until light and fluffy then slowly pour in cream and mix again to combine. With the mixer on low speed slowly add the flour and salt mixture and mix just until the dough comes together. Kneed the dough lightly to hold the dough together then cut into two portions and flatten each portion into a disk. Wrap each disk with plastic and place in the refrigerator for 1 hour minimum before using or up to 2 days.

Quiche filling and assembly:


4 tablespoons butter

2 cups Bing cherries, pitted

1 teaspoon nutmeg

2 tablespoons granulated sugar

Preheat the oven to 350°F. In a medium saucepan melt the butter over medium heat and continue to cook until it begins to brown. As soon as the butter begins to get frothy and browned add the pitted Bing cherries to the pan and cook for 3-4 minutes just until the fruit begins to soften. Add the nutmeg and sugar and cook one minute longer. Remove from heat and place in a small bowl to cool. While the cooked cherries cool, remove the pastry dough from the refrigerator and roll out to a ¼ inch thick oval. Cut in half and using each half per ramekin begin by pressing the dough into the bottom and sides of the ramekin, leaving about an inch hanging over the side. Fill the ramekins full of the cherry mixture then fold the overhanging sides of the dough over the fruit to seal the quiche, leaving a small opening in the center. Place the quiche on a cookie sheet and bake in the oven for 20-25 minutes, just until the pasty is browned and slightly puffed. Serve the quiche warm right out of the oven.

Yields 4 individual sweet quiche

Published in Delicious Discoveries