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Southwest’s Sizzling Fare

I hope you enjoy southwest cooking as much as I do. I enjoy it all year long and grow many of my own herbs. I grill with mesquite smoking chips, and miss my days as a Texas restaurant critic whenever I pass a southwestern steakhouse with mouth-watering smells. This month I feature several of my southwest dishes. The Southwest Salad will entice even the youngest banditos at your house.


2 cups corn chips

1/2 head iceberg lettuce, torn into
small pieces

4 oz. shredded sharp cheddar cheese

1 (15-oz.) can pinto beans, rinsed and drained

1 large tomato, diced

1/2 cup Italian or your favorite vinaigrette
salad dressing

4 Tablespoons sliced green onions

3 Tablespoons chopped green chilies

1 medium avocado, peeled and sliced

Toss first eight ingredients together on platter. Top with sliced avocado. Serves 8.


1-1/4 cups chicken broth

1 teaspoon cumin

2 teaspoons chili powder

1/8 teaspoon hot pepper sauce

1 cup uncooked instant rice

1-1/2 cups frozen corn with red and green peppers

1/4 cup sliced green onions

2 teaspoons chopped fresh cilantro

1/4 cup sliced black olives, drained

In medium saucepan, bring chicken broth, cumin, chili powder, and hot pepper sauce to a boil. Stir in rice, reduce heat, cover, and simmer 5-10 minutes or until rice is tender and all liquid is absorbed. Stir in corn and peppers, onions, cilantro, and olives. Cook until heated through. Serves 4 to 6.


1-1/2 teaspoons chili powder

1 teaspoon fresh garlic

1/2 teaspoon dried oregano

1/4 teaspoon cumin

Combine all ingredients. Use to rub on tender beef steaks, chicken, salmon, or roasts. This amount will season about two pounds of meat and gives a great southwest flavor when grilling.


6 Tablespoons unsalted butter,
softened, at room temperature

1/4 teaspoon cumin

1/4 teaspoon dried oregano

1/4 teaspoon chili powder

1/8 teaspoon thyme leaves

1/4 teaspoon black pepper

Dash ground red pepper


1 Tablespoon Southwest Butter

2 teaspoons blackened steak seasoning

2 lbs. beef rib eyes, cut about 1-1/2 inch thick

In small bowl, combine all ingredients for butter and blend well. Place butter on piece of plastic wrap and form a log-shaped roll. Refrigerate until firm. Use one pat of melted Southwest Butter, brushing each side of steaks. Rub blackened seasoning on both sides of steak while grill is heating. Grill 4-6 inches away from hot coals. Cook until desired doneness, 8-12 minutes, turning once. To serve, place hot steaks on serving plates and cut butter into pats, placing one pat in the center of each hot steak. Serve immediately.


2 cups julienned green cabbage

2 cups julienned red cabbage

1/2 red bell pepper, cut into thin strips

1/2 yellow bell pepper, cut into thin strips

1 carrot, cut into julienne strips

1 cup mayonnaise

3 jalapenos, chopped

2 cloves garlic, chopped

1 Tablespoon chopped fresh cilantro

1 Tablespoon maple syrup

1-1/2 teaspoons cider vinegar

1-1/2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce

1 teaspoon chili powder

1/2 teaspoon ground cumin

1/2 teaspoon ground coriander

Salt to taste

Fresh lime juice

In large bowl combine cabbages, peppers, and carrot. Process remaining ingredients in a blender until smooth. Adjust seasoning to taste with salt and lime juice. Pour dressing over vegetables and toss. Serves 4 to 6.


1 can quartered artichoke hearts
(approximately 15 oz.)

1 (8-oz.) can chopped olives

1 (8-oz.) can chopped pimento

1 (8-oz.) can chopped mushrooms

3 (8-oz.) cans chopped green chilies

2 medium white onions, chopped

4 Tablespoons cider vinegar

2 Tablespoons olive oil

2 teaspoons salt

2 cloves garlic, minced

Drain all excess juice thoroughly from artichokes, olives, pimentos, mushrooms, and chilies. Combine all ingredients in a large bowl. Cover and chill (overnight if possible). Serve with tortilla chips as a dip. Serves 4.

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