When’s the last time you sat around the dinner table with your family? If you hesitate too long to come up with an answer, you might want to make some changes.
Not that I’m in any place to judge you or your family. We don’t sit around our table nearly like I’d like us to and I’m partly to blame. Schedules are also to blame. It doesn’t always have to be your own dinner table. I like when we can all partake in a family night out too and I count those times as family dinner time, for sure. For me, it is not nearly as much about what you’re eating or where as it is what you might be talking about at the dinner hour. The talking part, that’s huge.
I’ve often told my husband if I could simply cook the meal and all the other stuff just magically happened – mostly the clean up, leftovers put in the refrigerator and the kitchen looked better than when I started – we’d have home cooked meals every night of the week. I also need inspiration (enter Pinterest) and I need to get better about shopping for the right ingredients, on a budget.
One of my new favorite meals to share with my family and guests is really simple and I credit my French mother-in-law Pierrette (which is funny because the meal has a southwestern flare). She has some great French recipes too, I’ll share those another time.
Enjoy your time at the dinner table with your family. One dish meals are also a lot easier clean up. See? I have a method to my madness.
One roasted chicken (from your nearest grocery) OR two-three chicken breasts, sautéed or grilled.
Pkg. of corn or flour tortillas (whatever you have or meets your tastes). I prefer flour, if I can find them in whole wheat, great.
16 oz. sour cream.
Can of either cream of celery soup or I’ve used Wolf Gang Puck’s Chicken Enchilada Soup w/black beans.
Small can of green chiles.
Pkg. of shredded cheese (cheddar or Mexican blend or whatever you prefer).
Prepare a 13 X 9 glass or pottery baking dish by spraying bottom with cooking spray. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
In a medium to large mixing bowl, add shredded chicken, sour cream, can of soup, can of green chiles and about half the pkg. of cheese. Mix thoroughly. Add a bit of salt & pepper. Line the bottom of the baking dish with 2-3 tortillas (depending on the size of the tortilla) to cover the bottom. Add about a third of the layer of chicken/soup mixture. Add another layer of tortillas and repeat twice. Top with another layer of tortillas and sprinkle enough cheese on top of casserole to cover the tortillas.
Bake until bubbly, about an hour, check after about 45 minutes. I’ve baked this as long as 90 minutes, so it depends on taste and how much time you have. The chicken is already cooked. Let it sit about five minutes before cutting to serve.
While the casserole is baking, you can make a yummy homemade salsa to serve as a garnish for the southwestern lasagna.
One can of tomatoes.
Half cup of chopped onion (we prefer red onion, but white or yellow works).
Small can of chopped jalapeno peppers.
Small bunch of fresh cilantro.
1-2 cloves of crushed garlic (to taste, we like 2).
Lime or lemon juice.
We use a hand chopper/or mini food processor. Add drained tomatoes, onion, garlic, cilantro leaves (not the stems) and about 2 tbsp. of juice from jalapeno can and enough slices to make a small pepper and a few squeezes from a lime or a lemon. Chop finely.
Break out the tortilla chips, because once you finish the southwestern lasagna, you’ll want more chips & salsa. This is great to continue the family fun with either family movie or game night. What’s your favorite go-to meal for family dinner night?