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Bean & Corn Salsa With Rice, Cheese & Chips To Dip

My friend, Traci, came to visit a few weeks ago.  She didn’t want me to have to make lunch, so she brought along an awesome lunch of brown rice, homemade bean and corn salsa, some cheese and tortilla dipping chips.  It was the most delicious, filling and simple lunch!  I loved it.  I knew after my first bite that I would want to share it with you all, so I grabbed my camera and took the picture above.
The salsa has amazing flavor.  I am not a cilantro fan, so I was excited to see that this recipe used parsley instead.  The lime juice and sweet onion were key ingredients for me.  
We have been trying to eat less red meat around here, adding at least one non-meat meal a week.  This recipe is the perfect way to get some fiber, veggies, and protein from the cheese and beans.  If you wanted more protein, a side of grilled chicken would be perfect, you could serve it on a bed of rice with the salsa on top–pretty! I’ve been thinking about this recipe ever since I tried it and can’t wait to make it for my family!
Bean & Corn Salsa
3c. chopped seeded tomato  (4-5 Roma)
1/2c. chopped Vidalia or other sweet onion
1/2c. chopped tomatillos (about 2 med.)
1/4c. canned black beans, rinsed and drained (I like 1/2c.)
1/4c. fresh corn kernels (I just throw frozen kernels straight in – I like 1/2c.)
2T. finely chopped fresh parsley
2T. fresh lime juice (1 med. lime)
1/2t. salt
1/2t. pepper
1/2t. hot sauce

Combine; cover and chill for at least 2 hours. I usually make the night before. Of course, I like mine put over Rice with a little cheese heated up in the microwave and then served with tortilla chips! 

If you have never cooked with a tomatillo, what you need to look for at the store are tomatillos with green (not brown) papery skin, and firm flesh–no soft spots.  The paper skin peels right off,(lil’ cutie shows you how in the first video below) and you can eat them raw or you can roast them, then blend them up into a green salsa (second video below).  When eaten raw, they are firm and have a bit of a tart taste, which is perfect for the Bean & Corn Salsa recipe above.  Roasting makes them smokey and soft.


Easy Cheesy Mini Bagels

Sara Lee sells Whole Wheat Mini Bagels with NO high fructose corn syrup..yippee! 

 I made spaghetti for dinner tonight.   I am one who just can’t eat spaghetti without some time of bread to dip in the sauce, but I had no time to make bread.  I had these mini bagels on hand, so I:

~spread on some butter
~sprinkled with garlic salt
~sprinkled with cheese
~put ’em under the broiler until golden and melty!

As I was dipping them in the sauce, I thought
about how easy it would be to make Homemade
Bagel Bite Mini Pizzas.  I could make a bunch
ahead of time and freeze them, then just pop them
in the oven when needed.  With fiber from the
bagels and protein from the cheese, it would make
a pretty filling and healthy snack.  I’m sure that
will be a future post!:)