• erin

    Dumplings with my family
    A recent graduate of The Culinary Institute of America, I found myself with no money, no kitchen equipment, and an exceptionally huge appetite. Ideas, improvisations, and yummy meal solutions were discovered in the kitchen of my very first apartment.
  • what sounds good?

    I've been getting a lot of requests and suggestions for the apartment kitchen. I LOVE these suggestions, keep them coming!

    If you have anything you'd like me to consider (recipes to develop, shortcuts for recipes, great ingredients, or even blog formatting), shoot me an email and let me know!

    em570039@mycia.net

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    Check out my food journeys at An Appetite for Adventure!
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Sweet Potato, Poblano, and Chicken Enchiladas

I found the Sweet Potato and Poblano Enchiladas over at Budget Bytes to sound absolutely delectable so I figured I’d give my own version a whirl. Matt and I love enchiladas, but I had never thought of incorporating sweet potatoes into them – it was a match made in heaven. Their natural sweetness balanced the hint of spice, and their creaminess made for a great contrasting texture in the filling. Proof that combining your cravings with what you have in the house can turn into a delicious dinner!

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Chicken and Brown Rice Casserole with Poblanos, Bell Peppers, Tomatoes, Corn, and Red Onions

This dish doesn’t sound like much. I say that because when Matt said this afternoon “Let’s make something simple for dinner” and I suggested this dish, he didn’t exactly jump up and down. It sounds basic, and maybe even dull. But what pushes something like this over the top (and always does) is really good ingredients and really good flavor. This seemingly simple casserole was bursting with flavor: poblano and bell peppers, sweet corn, moist chicken, and really good cheddar cheese. If you want to take something to the next level, insert flavor whenever possible in a dish like this, even if it means and extra step: roast the corn and the peppers, season the chicken with herbs and spices, or cook the rice in broth instead of water (which makes for an incredibly flavorful base). The end result was as satisfying as it was quick – and could easily be altered with all sorts of different ingredients to suit your taste.

Aztec Chicken Casserole

If you ask a student at The Culinary Institute of America how they eat at school, you’ll probably get an indifferent shrug. It’s not that the food is horrible (granted, it is made by students, so there is the occasional bad seed). And ordinary college students don’t have the incredible selection of American, Asian, European, and Mediterranean food. But the classes at the CIA rotate on a three week basis, meaning every three weeks, the same dishes reappear. So after three years, even CIA students get tired of pad thai, gnocchi with duck ragu, and poblanos rellanos. But there is one dish I still crave, even now. It’s a simple and tasty casserole that’s perfect for the apartment kitchen. Plus, it’s easy to freeze and great for leftovers.