“Cooking is like love. It should be entered into with abandon or not at all.” – Harriet Van Horne
Dave said, “Lets make some black bean & corn salsa!” Of course it was game on… & of course I said, “Let’s give it a twist!” You can make this recipe as is served with chips, or you can add the Queso & chorizo to give it that special Jean twist! Let me know how you like it in the comments below!
Our Favorite Recipes
Ingredients for the Salsa:
1-15.25 ounce can black beans, drained & rinsed
1-15.25 ounce can whole kernel corn, drained & rinsed
1 cup diced Roma tomato- about 2 large
1/2 cup diced red shallot- about 1 medium to large
1/4 cup diced jalapeno pepper, ribbed & seeded- about 1 large or 2 medium
1 glove fresh garlic OR 1 tsp jarred
1/4 cup finely chopped fresh cilantro
2 TBSP Lemon juice
1 TBSP Extra virgin olive oil
1/2 tsp cumin
1/4 tsp pink Himalayan salt
1/4 tsp fresh ground black pepper
Bag of your favorite tortilla chips!
Ingredients for Nacho Skillet:
1 pound chorizo pork sausage fried & drained
1 TBSP Extra virgin olive oil to fry sausage in
1 cup taco blend shredded cheese
1 cup your favorite Queso- I like On The Border with Monterey Jack
We have been feasting from our garden daily. Using fresh ingredients gives this recipe such wonderful flavor.
Pro tip: If you would like to use fresh sweet corn, simply purchase 2 ears, steam until cooked, and then cut the kernels off. Super easy, & super yum!
1. Drain & wash both the black beans and corn in a colander until the water runs clear.
2. Combine the remaining ingredients into a large bowl; mix well, cover and refrigerate for 1 hour stirring every 15 minutes.
3. While the salsa is chilling fry chorizo sausage in olive oil until cooked thoroughly; once cooked drain in a colander.
4. Place fried sausage in a 6×9 baking dish.
5. Spread 2 cups of the salsa over the sausage evenly.
6. Sprinkle 1 cup of shredded cheese over salsa. Then pour 1 cup of Queso over cheese.
7. Cover baking dish with foil and bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes or until cheese is bubbling.
You can also warm this in the microwave on high for 10 to 12 minutes if you prefer.
Serve with your favorite tortilla chips!
Pro tip: I purchase all my pork & beef from local farmers. The taste is genuinely so much more flavorful!
If you enjoyed this post & thought this was a super yummy recipe leave me a comment. …. and of course please LIKE, Follow & Share.
One of my favorite things to do is attend area farmers markets. Whenever I travel I immediately look up any surrounding farmers markets, and you better believe if we can attend, we do!
Here are my Top 5 reasons to support our local farmers markets.
1. Support your local economy by supporting your local farmers & entrepreneurs!
As educated consumers we want to know where our food is coming from. We’re tired of food being mass produced on assembly lines with labels sporting names of ingredients that can’t even be pronounced. We want clean & healthy food locally sourced & grown. Where do you get this great stuff you ask? You get it at your local farmers market!
According to the National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS), Agricultural Statistics Board, United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Released August 17, 2020, “On an average market day, 916 households shopped across markets in the U.S. and spent $14,547 per farmers market. Farmers Market Managers served as paid employees in 4,321 markets, while in 3,162 they served as volunteers. On average, the paid Farmers Market Managers earned $18.40 per hour. Managers worked an average of 19.4 hours per week. “ Taken from https://downloads.usda.library.cornell.edu/usda-esmis/files/pz50hd694/gx41n598k/jd473j98z/nfar0820.pdf
2. Support your local farmers & entrepreneurs!
Direct marketing of farm products through farmers markets continues to be an important sales outlet for agricultural producers nationwide. Small businesses can get their product out to a fresh target market at a very reasonable cost. Markets can eliminate the need for a brick and mortar facility and all the expenses associated with it. Most importantly, it allows customers to build relationships with producers. You can see the positive impact of supporting local from this infographic for the Kalamazoo Michigan Farmers Market.
3. Explore new varieties of fresh fruits & veggies, & other healthy foods!
I’ve often been asked, “What’s an Heirloom?” or told “I’ve never seen a purple carrot!!!” Well, you’ll find a plethora of Heirloom varieties including purple carrots at most farmers markets!
Tomatoes are by far the hottest item in the Heirloom market, but there are several varieties of eggplant, squash, carrots, beans, and so much more.
Besides providing a wide range of fresh fruit and veggies, you’ll be dazzled by a slew of delicious baked goods, dairy, egg and meat products, honey and maple syrup, body care products, both fresh and dried herbs, along with all types of artisan products. Some of these include handcrafted baskets, wooden bowls and cutting boards, as well as beautiful pottery, jewelry and several forms of art media. Pricing is typically very reasonable when compared to brick and mortar stores. Everything at the market is fresh from that day or the day before, unlike grocery store produce which has been shipped and transported for days.
Many markets incorporate kid’s programming, cooking demos, health fairs, & live music, to name just a few! The reason is simple: it is every market’s mission to provide healthy, nutritious, reasonably priced food to all people.
The farmers market is an ideal project for every community to incorporate. It promotes healthy eating, and enables community members to build relationships with their local producers.
One incredible program many farmers markets offer is The Power of Produce Club (POP Club). The POP Club provides both an educational & entertaining opportunity for children to engage in their market with the opportunity to discuss produce with the market farmers while exposing them to new & unique fruits and vegetables. ” In addition to participating in educational activities, POP Club kids receive vouchers to spend at the market, allowing them to make their own shopping decisions at the market.”
Ask your farmers market manager if this is available, if not tell them how to participate!
5. Connect with your community!
Farmers markets provide a place where the community can come together, meet and shop locally. The market is a gathering place for friends and family. Markets offer fresh products locally produced, face-to-face interaction with producers and artisans, live entertainment, family activities, all the while supporting the local economy.
“According to the USDA, Farmers Markets are an integral part of the urban/farm linkage and have continued to rise in popularity, mostly due to the growing consumer interest in obtaining fresh products directly from the farm. Farmers markets allow consumers to have access to locally grown, farm fresh produce, enables farmers the opportunity to develop a personal relationship with their customers, and cultivate consumer loyalty with the farmers who grow the produce.
Thanks for taking the time to read my article. Please like it & leave me a comment! Let me know what your favorite farmers market is, and where it’s located! I’d love to visit if I’m ever in the area! Maybe we can meet up for a coffee!
Please share this blog if you found it informative, and follow me on Facebook for fun & informative content! Happy day, Jean!
I’ve always tried to encourage others to plant something… anything. The thrill that you get from placing the seed or the little seedling into the pleasant earth… then waiting and watching for the first signs of life to come springing up out of the soft ground… then suddenly one morning there it is… a tiny sprout or the first blossom on your tomato plant. As you patiently await the first signs of fruit… then the ripening… then the harvest.
As you stand there holding your pleasant reward, staring at it and re-thinking the whole process and the time and tender care that it took to get this into your hand.
Garlic I just harvested
…when you eat that first thing you’ve grown… you’ll close your eyes and savor the taste, taking in the flavor and enjoying it like no other thing you’ve ever eaten.
…a new respect you’ll have for the seed and the dirt… a new passion will be stirred up in you.
I love gardening…
Some may think that starting a garden is a difficult task, but not so. A garden is like anything else. You’ll need to do a bit of research and planning; you’ll need to think over what you’d like to grow and the amount of space that you have available. I have five acres, and if I could, other than the house and outbuildings, it would all be gardens… just an expanse of gardens.
Unfortunately my dreams are bigger than my reach…
Potager’s or more commonly known today as Kitchen Gardens were historically a mainstay for many families. My heart and soul are simply thrilled with the resurgence of home gardening and canning over the last decade. I love to hear about all the urban gardens, the thrill in the voices of my market friends as they tell me what they’re harvesting out of their little home gardens… especially when it’s from the plants they purchased from me earlier in the year.
The definition of this French word, potagère is simply vegetable garden and is properly pronounced: “por-ta-jj”, giving credit to the French who inspired this style of ornamental kitchen garden’s.
The potager is most similar to the traditional English cottage garden but is mainly based on vegetables and other edible plants and herbs, often incorporating some cut flower plants for the household.
Historically plants were chosen for their form, color and taste, with seasonality and continuity of fresh vegetables for the household in mind and were typically low maintenance and closely planted. This is very similar to raised bed gardening (another blog ;-))
What you include in your potager is all about you and your family. What you like and love, although I do suggest trying at least one new thing each year…I do!
Veggies~ This is a matter of personal prefference. We like to include one zuchinni, four hills of potatoes, two pepper plants, several lettuces, spinach, kale and chard, two tomato plants- one Roma and one salad type, short rows of carrots, onions and garlic. I also like to include a cucumber that I typically grow up on a trellis.
Herbs: We use lots of fresh herbs in our cooking. I wanted to incorporate an herb section in our potager. Herbs have a tendency to ‘get out of hand’, so all my herbs are in containers of sorts.
Here is a photo of part of my herb section.
My perennials include- sage, oregano, chives, sorrel, thyme, and biennial parsley. Calendula reseeds itself each year and I plant purple, lemon and Genovese type basil each year.
Flowers- try edibles: I grow nasturtiums and day lilies in my potager, along with marigolds along side the tomatoes. I also have several other perennials incorporated simply for beautification. The potager is beside the pergola which has several sweet autumn clematis and climbing roses along its side. I also have some hosta’s, a white bleeding heart, Astilbe and bee’s balm .
I believe, as the gardeners of old that all three… vegetables, herbs and flowers all belong balanced together in a potager.
No matter what you decide to grow, make your garden’s a reflection of your soul… a passionate place that you can escape to from all the cares of life… a meditative place to commune with the almighty One…