Instant Pot Chicken and Black Bean Soup (California, 2006, adapted)

Instant Pot Chicken and Black Bean Soup is a simply prepared soup with Mexican sensibilities suitable for a cool weeknight.  The recipe is one of many lovely soups in a 2006 cookbook from the Mother Teresa Maternity Home in Placerville, California.  The home serves as a women’s shelter with a special emphasis on housing women……

Mexican Chicken with Prunes and Bananas (adapted from Buen Provecho, 1995)

Mexican Chicken with Prunes and Bananas is adapted from Buen Provecho, a 1995 recipe collection compiled by the AT&T Hispanic Employee Group HISPA.   I’ll admit that my first reaction was “hard pass” but was encouraged by the author’s note to take a second look: People may at first be a little startled by the combination……

Frijoles Negros con Sofrito (Cuba, adapted from Buen Provecho, New Jersey, 1995)

Years and years ago my local congregation held a Mexican-themed potluck.  I’m not talking about one of those discomfiting frat parties where everyone comes dressed like Speedy Gonzalez; this was more like large scale taco night.  Potluck dishes were supposed to be Mexican or at least Mexican-adjacent, and we had a members of the congregation……

Instant Pot Bombay Chicken (adapted from The Tastes of Home, 2004)

We have a good friend from Idaho who use to joke about a dish she grew up with that her mother called “Hong Kong Chicken”.  In spite of the decidedly ‘ethnic’ name it was, in essence, the archetypal casserole:  chicken pieces bathed in cream of mushroom soup and baked until tender.   So why is it……

Lamb Shank Vindaloo (inspired by Hotpoint Storybook Kitchen Cookbook, 1964)

Lamb Shank Vindaloo is a mid-century American interpretation of a popular Indian dish with Portuguese roots.   The lamb shank is cooked in a sour and spicy sauce that’s addictive and delicious.  Vindaloo dishes are now an Indian restaurant staple, but the sauce has its origins in a vinegary Portuguese stew.  As such you’ll often find……

Braised Greens with Paneer

Braised Greens with Paneer is a recipe born of necessity.  If I’m up early on a weekend morning I’ll take a trip out to the specialty butcher for inspiration for Sunday dinner, and then get the rest of the meal at the farm stand up the road.   On this particular weekend I had picked up……

Cumin-spiced Pork Roast

Cumin-spiced Pork Roast is a simple and inexpensive way to round out your dinner plate with a ‘juicy hunk of meat’.  I’ll prepare this or something like it when the meal includes a time-consuming side dish (such as Curry Spiced Carrot Croquettes) – there’s very little active time beyond the dry rub and a quick……

Tuna Creole, Hold The Tuna (adapted from Tomato Ketchup Recipe Collection)

If I had to distill Tomato Ketchup Recipe Collection into a single recipe it would be Tuna Creole.  It straddles the line between ketchup-as-tomato-sauce recipes and unholy monstrosity, and also stands as a testament to the 1980s weeknight meal.  I suppose someone must still be buying Tuna Helper, but the whole “Tuna with Sauce over……