In my resolution to have a more positive outlook, along with that comes trying not to worry so much. There is so much that is out of my control, but the one thing I can at least attempt to assume control over is my mind and my thoughts. Outside circumstances may be less than ideal, but I still have the ability to choose not just to live, but to thrive. I have a choice over what I can focus my thoughts on. When I am worrying I stop acting. It wastes time and energy and nothing gets done. While talking to a friend yesterday, he asked the question, “What are you afraid of? What is your biggest fear?” That was an epiphany to me. When I actually address that question, honestly, my fears are really not that big of a deal. So, why am I wasting time focusing on the worst. If the worst happens I will get through it when it comes. Until then, I take photographs, write, cook, and enjoy my beautiful life surrounded by people I love and who love me.
Chicken Enchilada Soup
4 1/4 cups chicken broth
10 corn tortillas
1 cup green enchilada sauce
10 ounces red enchilada sauce
2 cups cooked, shredded chicken
1 cup sliced mushrooms
1 cup chopped zucchini
1 cup chopped bell peppers (assorted colors)
1 teaspoon cumin
1/2 cup half and half
cilantro and sour cream for garnish
Heat 2 cups of the chicken broth over medium heat. Tear up the tortillas and add them to the broth while mixing together. The tortillas will soften and thicken the broth. Use an immersion blender or transfer to a blender and mix until smooth. Add the remaining chicken broth and whisk together until smooth while bringing it to a simmer.
Add both enchilada sauces, the chicken, the vegetables, and the cumin. Simmer until the vegetables are tender and cooked through. Add the half and half, whisking until blended. Serve with cornbread.
Double Cornbread with Gouda and Sun-Dried Tomatoes
[adapted from Sur la Table]
1 1/4 cups yellow cornmeal
1 cup all-purpose flour
4 teaspoons baking powder
1 tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon black pepper
2 large eggs
1 cup buttermilk
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 cup corn kernels (I used frozen)
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons coarsely grated Gouda cheese
2 tablespoons finely chopped olive oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes, rinsed and drained
Preheat oven to 400°F. Place a 9-10 inch cast-iron skillet over low heat on the stove top, letting it heat while making the batter.
In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the cornmeal, flour, baking powder, sugar, salt, and pepper. In another bowl, combine the eggs, buttermilk, and 1/4 cup of the oil until well blended. Add the corn, 1/2 cup of the cheese, and the tomatoes to the liquid ingredients.
Make a well in the dry ingredients. Add the liquid mixture and fold together with a spatula until just blended. Do not over mix.
Drizzle the heated skillet with the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil and coat evenly. Add the batter immediately and spread to the edges of the skillet with a spatula. Sprinkle the remaining 2 tablespoons of cheese over the top.
Bake for 25 minutes or until golden and the edges have pulled away from the sides.