Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Challenge Food #2

OK-admittedly I think I have the adult version of ADD. I am one of those people that has multiple tasks going on at once, all in the midst of completion. Take this morning as an example. I start in the kitchen cleaning up breakfast dishes. I go into the fridge to put back the milk and notice some old leftovers. So I begin cleaning out the fridge. As I clean the fridge I notice we are out of OJ. So then I sit down with the paper so see what else is on sale and start my shopping list. Then I realize I don't know what's for dinner. So I start perusing through cookbooks to find something yummy. Something in the cookbook reminds me to email a friend about a different recipe. Before I log into my email, I remember that I was bidding on something that ends today on eBay, so I open another window to check that. As I am doing that, I look out the window and wonder what the weather will be like for our long run tomorrow, so I check I think about running, and I think of this blog, so I open that up too. Which reminds me that I haven't done another challenge food on here. And here I am. I am sort of like that mouse in the book If you Give a Mouse a Cookie...

Anyway, I can promise you, based on the example above, that I will not be as consistent with the challenge food of the week as I had hoped. So let's just go for doing a challenge food anytime I think about it, OK? So....have you ever tried jícama (pronounced HEE-kah-mah? It is actually a Mexican potato and you can find it by the regular potatoes in our grocery store. You just peel it with a paring knife and chop or slice it up. If you have ever eaten the BBQ chopped chicken salad at California Pizza Kitchen (YUMO)they put jícama on top. It adds great crunch to salads, slaws and salsas, or a nice change of pace added to raw veggies and dip. It doesn't have much flavor...sort of takes on the flavor of whatever you pair it with. A very common way to eat jícama is to slice it like fries, sprinkle it with chili powder and salt and squeeze with some fresh lime...a yummy refreshing easy snack. Nice change from carrots and celery.

Here's a black bean salsa recipe from Cooking Light that I jazzed up with our challenge veggie. I'd better get going. I've got 9 minutes to bid on my eBay item and I still have a table full of dirty breakfast dishes, a half cleaned out fridge, and a decision to make about dinner! Oh! And an email to send...and a...and a...

Black Bean, Avocado, and Jícama Salsa

2 cups chopped seeded tomato
1 cup diced peeled avocado
1 cup diced peeled jícama
1/2 cup chopped red onion
handful chopped fresh cilantro
juice of one squeezed lime
1 to 1/2 jalapeno pepper, chopped
few pinches salt
1 can black beans, rinsed and drained

Combine and chill 30 minutes before serving.

Cumin Chips (serve with above)

4 tsp lime juice
2 tsp canola oil
1/2 tsp ground cumin
12 6 inch tortillas (corn, flour, wheat)

heat oven 375. Combine first 3 in a bowl. Brush tortillas with mixture. Cut each tortilla into 6 wedges. Arrange on baking sheet coated with cooking spray. Sprinkle with salt. Bake 30 minutes or so until crisp, rotating pans and turning chips every 10 minutes.

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