Cancun Grilled Chicken Tacos with Citrus Chile Marinade

Cancun Grilled Chicken Tacos Citrus Chile Marinade

People keep telling me that summer vacation is over.  They are probably unpacking their suitcase, kicking the sand out of their shoes and finding places for all the cute little tchotchkes they bought on their Cancun get a way.  Wait… you didn’t go to Cancun?  Don’t feel bad, I didn’t get to go to the beach this year, either.  In fact, I’ve decided I’m not going to be so nice about it this year.  I’ve decided I’m going to rebel about it.  Ya, that’s it, I’m going to put on my own “occupy” protest.  I’m going to camp in the backyard and not take a bath until somebody takes me to the beach.  This year, summer isn’t over until I say so!

Well, maybe I’ll come in to shower and stuff… it is 150 degrees out there.

Or, maybe, I’ll just stay in under the air conditioner, make my Cancun Grilled Chicken Tacos with Citrus Chile Marinade and pretend I’m at the beach.

You can even stage your own protest.  Your family will love these tacos.  I tried them out on my brother’s family this summer and his kids ate until there was nothing left on the table.  It really made a fun weeknight meal and I was amazed at how fast it came together.  Especially with my niece, Audrey, making the guacamole!  We set bowls of the taco ingredients around the table “family style” to really get the kids talking to each other after a long day….

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Fast and Easy Grilled Recipes with Lot’s of Wow Factor Round-Up

Easy Grill Recipes Chicken and Shrimp

Easy Grilled Recipes on a Stick

Look no further.  Here it is, all in one place, our “go to” guide for fast and easy grilled recipes.   Plus, everything you will need to serve with them from summer side dishes to easy desserts and icy beverages.  It’s sort of a “mix and match summer grilling menu” that is filled with our family pleasing favorites.  Here are the links to green chile cheese burgers, bacon wrapped hot dogs, shrimp tacos, even chicken fajitas on a stick!  Not to mention recipes for refreshing orange jicama salad, cowboy caviar and an easy pineapple coconut cake recipe.

If you are one of our regular friends, you already know that I have been crowned the “Queen of Last Minute.”  Last minute what?  Last minute everything!  Last minute parties, gifts, birthday cards…  If you are a new friend,  you might as well know now, I am always running behind.  Always.  That means I love recipes that are fast and easy but, still pack that “wow” factor.  If I do manage to get ahead of schedule, I still don’t want to miss the Par-Tay by getting stuck in the kitchen.  These recipes will fix that.  Most of the dishes can be made ahead of time or prepped ahead and quickly cooked over the grill.

Late or not, these are my “go to” recipes for great outdoor family meals that are impressive enough to serve to guests.

Make sure you book mark this page so it will be at your finger tips all summer long….

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Spicy Buffalo Chicken Cannoli Recipe

photo Buffalo Chicken Salad Cannoli Recipe

Stop!  Don’t touch that back button!  A chicken cannoli is not as crazy as it sounds.  It’s a make ahead, Southwest version of Buffalo chicken wings that frees me up to enjoy the football game and not miss all the fun.

My name is Sandy and I love football.  There.  I said it.  I know it’s not the trendy thing to say, or the girlie thing to say, but I can’t keep it a secret any longer.  Some people may blame my childhood; growing up between two brothers, playing touch football in the street, listening to my parents bet lobster dinners on playoff games and negotiate the point spread for the best advantage.  Others may blame the fact that I have lived most of my life in a house with a sports loving husband and two athletic sons.  What’s the word for it? Stockholm Syndrome?

What ever the reason, on Super Bowl Sunday, you will find me right there in the middle of things, cheering, arguing calls from the referees and yelling, “Rip their filthy ears off…”  Never mind.

Needless to say, the Super Bowl is a pretty big deal at my house.  I love to have a big selection of appetizers made ahead and ready to go so that I don’t miss a minute of the action.  First, I clear the sofa table and remove all knickknacks, tchotchkes and other feminine breakables to a safer location making room for the parade of chips, dips, popcorn and even a puff pastry delight or two.  Mind you, the puff pastry must be filled with hearty meats like pastrami or be sidelined until Valentine’s Day , Oscar night or some such girlie holiday.  No brie or sushi allowed….

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Easy Weeknight Honey Jalapeno Chicken Thighs Recipe

Honey Jalapeno Chicken Thighs

Easy. Flavorful. Healthy. What more could you want in a weeknight entree?

I have recently discovered the sublime taste of honey and jalapenos. A match made in heaven. So, I decided to try this heavenly taste with chicken. Sure enough, it’s a winner. Highly, highly recommend when you need an easy meal. This really is 20 minutes from grocery bag to table.

And, yes. I know. Soy sauce is not technically a southwest ingredient. But. It adds umami as well as saltiness. Again, a winner.

— posted by Donna

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Southwest Grilled Chicken Spring Rolls Recipe

image Grilled Chicken Summer Rolls Recipe
East meets Southwest today in Grilled Chicken Spring Rolls.  Yes indeed, they are a fun concoction of southwest flavors rolled up with grilled chicken and fresh vegetables then tucked into a Vietnamese ripe paper wrapping.  Throw in some angel hair pasta with a little chile oil and they make a filling family meal.

You know me, I’m always looking for a way to cheat nature and keep from turning my oven on.  So, when I can manage to cheat the dish washer too, I’m in heaven.  All it took was a grill pan and a pot of water to get this on the table.  Yes, we did use a few plates and bowls but, we made up for that… no silverware required.  Just put the ingredients in the center of the table and let every one build their own spring roll.

I’ve had plenty of spring rolls as an appetizer in restaurants before but, I had never thought of making them for dinner until I attended a photography workshop given by my friends Diane and Todd from White on Rice Couple.  After the first day of shooting, Diane and Todd brought all the fresh ingredients for authentic Vietnamese Spring Rolls into the studio and spread them out for dinner, family style.  I have to say it was the nicest, most relaxed way to get to know a whole class full of people.  While Diane introduced us to her Vietnamese cooking with fresh herbs, fish sauce, a wonderful chicken dish and how to work with the rice paper, our shyness disappeared and we wound up  talking like old friends.

I thought I would use Diane’s magic trick and serve her Spring Rolls when my boys came over for dinner this weekend.  They worked like a charm.  The boys laughed and told jokes and hung around  the table for most of the night.  Best of all, I got to spend the time with them and not in the kitchen over the dish washer….

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Pollo Asado Pizza Recipe or Pizza with Grilled Chicken

Pizza with Grilled Chicken Recipe
I’d like to say that this Pollo Asado Pizza Recipe is our favorite tailgating recipe. Well, it would be anyway… if we tailgated that is. Alas, no tailgating for me. I do have to say that I feel a little left out when all the tailgating posts go up around the internet and competition cooking shows pit Bears against Packers in parking lot throw downs. Inspired, I start planning my winning recipes—recipes that will wow the crowds and have everyone standing around my grill waiting for a bite. Maybe this year will be the year. So, with shopping list in hand, I step outside and… WHAM! Slapped back into reality.

I mean really, have you ever tailgated at an Arizona football game? It was 109° out there yesterday! With the radiant heat that so lovingly blesses us each and every September. In fact, the last time I attempted to tailgate, I was covering the Cardinals vs Seahawks game for my newspaper. Ya, there were tailgaters out there, in the parking lot, on the asphalt, at noon! Most of them were the hardcore Seahawk fans that followed their team here from Seattle. Poor souls. As an interesting angle for my story, I had brought my oven thermometer with me and set it on the ground while I interviewed the fans. It read 136°  baby, that’s right; the perfect temperature to roast my legs to medium rare.

Now, I do realize that some of you are able to tailgate. In fact, I’ve heard a rumor about something called “Fall” although, I’ve never actually seen it (my students used to think it was a myth invented by “the Man” in order to get children excited about school and bring apples to their teachers… but, that’s a whole OTHER story). And, just to prove that I’m not jealous, or harbor any grudges anyway, I’m sharing my Pollo Asado Pizza Recipe with you. It’s for the days that your team is out of town and you have to watch them on tv, or for when it’s too cold to go outside (I’ve heard rumors about that, too).
Pollo Asado Chicken Recipe on the grill or Grilled Chicken on the grill

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Everyday Southwest Video Debut! Roasted Tomatillo Chicken Enchilada Casserole – Our Submission for Cacique Contest

One of my guilty pleasures is cheese. I love cheese of any type. Salty cheese. Crumbly cheese. Stringy cheese. Strong flavored cheese. Oooey-gooey cheese. And I have a new favorite: Cacique brand Queso Quesadilla

One of our family’s favorite go-to dinners is a chicken enchilada casserole. I posted this in our first post on this blog. I have lately been using Cacique brand Queso Quesadilla in place of the usual Monterey Jack Cheese. This is a very flavorful cheese – nutty and buttery and rich tasting. It is great in dishes like this because it melts well and is very flavorful. And this recipe is even better with this cheese. I promise this will be one of your family’s favorites, too!

So, this is my entry for the Cacique challenge that just ended today. OK, Giada I’m not, I’ll admit that, but the contest required a video. So please try not to snicker. I wanted to share the cheesy goodness with you all!


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