Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Tuesday Do-Little Dinners: Quick and Easy Huevos Rancheros

OK, I'm even sicker today. I woke up at three a.m. with a throat so sore I could not swallow--at all. At six a.m. I called the clinic. At seven a.m. I went to walk-in Urgent Care, where I stayed for the next two hours (I guess everyone else in town is sick too). My strep throat culture was negative but apparently I have a terrible cold virus and also, as a bonus, pinkeye. Lovely! Now I'm back at home, downing ibuprofen, putting in prescription eyedrops, drinking tea, and trying to dodge everyone else's germs, too. Yeah, we're a cozy family of invalids these days.

But you didn't think I'd skip Do-Little Dinners, did you? Sure, I may be unable to swallow, but that shouldn't stop you from enjoying a good meal.

As a mostly lacto-ovo-vegetarian household, we eat a lot of egg dishes. I found this recipe years ago and have made it regularly ever since. I'm sure it's not even remotely authentic, but it's easy, quick, healthy, and everyone loves it. It takes less than 15 minutes start to finish. As a bonus, it works as breakfast, brunch, lunch, OR supper, so....have at it! (Do you sense a salsa theme in our house?)

Quick and Easy Huevos Rancheros
Serves 4

1 15-oz. can black beans, drained and rinsed
1-1/4 cups jarred salsa
1/4 cup water
4 eggs (can add more if desired; as many as you can fit in your skillet)
1/2 cup shredded cheddar or Monterey Jack cheese
4 large soft flour tortillas (we prefer wheat; Target has a yummy Archer Farms brand)
sour cream and avocado for topping (optional)

Combine beans, salsa, and water in a large skillet. Heat until mixture just begins to boil. Working quickly, crack the eggs ONE AT A TIME into a small custard cup and carefully slip each one onto the top of the simmering bean/salsa mixture. Cover the pan (a round metal pizza pan works well if your skillet doesn't have a matching lid) and reduce heat to medium-low. Cook approximately 5 minutes or until eggs reach desired doneness (check now and then). Sprinkle cheese over entire mixture; let melt.

Heat tortillas briefly in microwave. Place one on each plate; top with 1/4 of the beans/egg mixture. Top with sour cream, avocado, additional salsa, etc.

As with most of my favorite dishes, this one combines protein, starch, dairy, and vegetables (in the form of tomato salsa), so an easy green salad or some cut-up fresh fruit is just about all you need as an accompaniment. Though far be it from me to discourage the occasional side of Tostitos and guacamole, if that's your thing.


donna said...

Let me just clarify that you don't break the eggs (that's what the custard cup is for, right?)...

I'm so sorry to hear you're sick.

Several weeks ago I had what you have - my throat was so sore that it prevented me from eating (I lost 4 pounds, but gained most of it back by now) and I ended up taking tylenol for the sore throat more than for the 102 fever.

Shan said...

Hmmm. I'm not sure what Donna means, above, about the eggs, so let me try to explain it again. You start with 4 (or however many) eggs in the shell. When the beans start to boil, you crack one egg into the custard cup, then gently slide the egg from the custard cup onto the beans. Repeat for all eggs. The eggs end up "poaching" on top of the simmering beans/salsa mixture.

donna said...

Sorry; I meant that the yolk is not broken - it's not a scrambled egg, but 'poached' instead. Thanks for clarifying.