I really like to experiment with ingredients and flavors, but the truth is, sometimes cooking is just about getting something tasty and filling in the oven quickly. When I offer to take someone a meal, my thought process goes like this:
Q: Have I made them a meal before?
If NO -> STOP THINKING. Make Mexican Lasagna.
It’s easy and I usually have the ingredients on hand. It uses only a couple of dishes – 2, to be exact. It’s portable and freezable. 90% of the time I make it, I’m asked for the recipe, so it’s fair to say that most find it delicious. It’s easily doubled, which means I don’t have to come home and cook again after dropping off a meal. And finally, it’s adaptable – you can easily make it vegetarian or gluten-free. Dairy-free or vegan could be a little tricker, but definitely doable.
Mix and build it in the morning.
Sides are very easy. I bring a pre-packaged “Southwest Salad” mix when time is short. In this case, I mixed corn, yellow pepper, tomato, and onion together and mixed a little lime juice & cumin dressing together. My mom used to always make Jell-O with this meal. Even a set of clementines would complement it well.
Here we are with our portion, almost ready to eat.
And now I’ve dug in
Recipe (honestly, go ahead and google it. I don’t have my version anymore and I do it by taste…. but see below for general recipe)
1 lb ground beef (or ground chicken or ground turkey)
1 can black beans
1 cup sour cream
1 bunch green onions (you get the idea)
cheddar cheese, lots
Chili Powder, at least a tbsp
Cumin, at least a tsp
tortillas, corn or flour
Brown ground beef (or ground turkey or ground chicken). Drain the ground beef and dump into a bowl. Drain and add black beans (a can per pound of ground beef). Add enough sour cream to make it nice and creamy – at least a cup. Add cumin, chili powder, and salt/pepper to taste. Chop and add a bunch of green onions. Stir it all together.
Pour a thin layer of salsa on the bottom of the pan. Place tortillas on top. Spread the meat mixture. Sprinkle a generous layer of cheese. Repeat.
Vegetarian: Add an extra can of beans and a package of frozen corn – this is really delicious.
Gluten-free: Use corn tortillas