Use Leftover Chicken to Make an Inexpensive Pupusas, Salsa, and Beans Dinner
This is a quick, easy, and inexpensive dinner that is really, really good. Think of it as "Latin Night Out" in your own house at far less expense than if you went to a restaurant. You can, of course, make the pupusas--in this case a sort of cornmeal pancake filled with cheese--ahead of time. Pupusas are easy to do, and you can eat some of them (for lunch?) as you make them. Trust me, you'll want to sample the pupusas as they come out of the pan! Because the chicken is already cooked, the stew part of the dish--the salsa, beans, and chicken--takes minutes, meaning that all you need to do is heat everything together. The dish has protein, vegetables, and starch included. All you might need to round out the meal would be a salad. Any leftovers make great lunches. Enjoy!
Pupusas With Chicken, Salsa, and Beans -- Serves 4
8 small pupusas (see below)
14-16-ounce can of black beans, drained
12-ounce jar of salsa
1 - 1 1/2 cups of chopped, cooked chicken (or use turkey)
1/2 handful of cilantro (a few tablespoons of torn/chopped cilantro)
1/2 cup of shredded Monterey Jack (or cheddar) cheese
3-4 tablespoons of chopped green onions
Additional cilantro, sour cream, jalepenos, etc., optional
In a large skillet or chef's pan heat the beans, salsa, and chicken together over medium heat until simmering. Stir the mixture well, add the cilantro, and place the cooked pupusas on top of the mixture. Cover the pan and let everything heat together for a few minutes until the pupusas are hot. Sprinkle on the cheese and recover the pan until the cheese melts. Turn off the heat and sprinkle on the green onions. Serve the pupusa and chicken mixture topped with additional cilantro, sour cream, etc., if you like.
Pupusas -- Makes 12-16
2 cups of masa (corn flour)
1 1/2 cups of water
1/4 teaspoon of salt
1/4 -1/2 cup of cheese (Monterey Jack, cheddar, Colby, Mozzarella, Havarti)
In a large bowl mix together well the masa, water, and salt. Keep mixing (you can use your hands, if you want) until the dough looks like soft play dough. You may need to add a bit more water to get a soft dough (and that's fine). Break off pieces of dough and roll them into balls about the size of a golf ball. Flatten out the balls a little with your hands, stick your thumb into the center of the ball to make a depression, and fill the depression with some of the cheese. Wrap the dough around the cheese, then flatten out the dough over the filling into a pancake that's several inches in diameter. Heat a non-stick skillet over medium heat and spritz it well with olive oil or canola oil. When the pan is hot, place two or three pupusas in the pan. Cook the pupusas for 4-5 minutes on each side. They won't brown completely, just have a few spotty brown places. The edges also may crack a bit, but don't worry about it. Any cheese that oozes out of the pupusas while they cook is "cook's treat"! Repeat the cooking process with the remaining dough. You won't need all the pupusas for the recipe above, so you'll have leftovers, which keep well in a plastic bag or container in the refrigerator. You can reheat leftover pupusas in the air fryer or even the microwave (50 percent power).