Monday, May 03, 2010

Mexican Potato Bake

Mexican Potato Bake

I've worked at night - and almost every weekend - since I graduated from college. That's the life of a newspaper copy-editor, after all. This means that I miss a lot of holiday celebrations such as Memorial Day, the Fourth of July, and even Cinco de Mayo (unless they fall on a Friday night, which is one of my days off.) I don't get to take part in the cookouts and taco fests and poolside Coronas with lime. Sad, isn't it? Missing all these get-togethers is a bummer, but it doesn't mean I can't eat some of the food! This Mexican Potato Bake would be great served alongside your fish tacos, chicken quesadillas and homemade salsa and chips. Or warm up a big, flour tortilla and wrap it around a spoonful of this casserole! This dish was a big hit in my house, and like the Mennonite girls say - it's easy to double and reheats beautifully. So what's not to love?!

Mexican Potato Bake (Homemade Taco Seasoning)

If you're like me you have a cabinet full of bottled spices that only get used a bit at a time. You know, you use a teaspoon here and teaspoon there, until the spices go bad and it's time to replace them. Making homemade taco seasoning is a great way to use up your spices and waste less money! It's so easy to make, and it tastes a lot less salty to me than the premade, packaged seasonings you can buy. This seasoning recipe worked great for this casserole, and I think it would be great on regular taco meat, a baked potato or maybe even sprinkled on scrambled eggs. Plus, you can tailor it to your own taste: decrease the salt; add more cayenne; or increase the garlic powder - it's all up to you.

So while I won't be heading to any Cinco de Mayo festivities this week I hope you get the chance to eat, drink and be merry. And consider taking along this dish - your flour tortillas (and friends) will thank you!

Homemade Taco Seasoning
By Confabulation in the Kitchen

Ingredients
2 teaspoon minced, dried onion
1 teaspoon chili powder
1/2 teaspoon crushed, dried red pepper flakes
1/4 teaspoon oregano
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon cornstarch
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon paprika
1/4 teaspoon cayenne powder (optional - I left it out to make the dish kid-friendly)

Directions
1. Combine all ingredients in small bowl and mix well.
2. Store in cool, dry place, but try to use it up quickly. It should keep for awhile, but it will probably taste fresher if it's used sooner than later.

* Please visit Mennonite Girls Can Cook for the casserole recipe.