Friday, July 11, 2008

Cafe Rio

If you aren't already jumping up and down for joy just because of the title of this post, then you don't know Cafe Rio. It's a restaurant in Utah that is known for its to-die-for salads. I hear everything else is good too--I just love the Shredded Chicken Salad and have to get it every time. A trip to visit family there is not a trip until we've hit up Cafe Rio... and I'm not exaggerating. So when my friend Janelle gave me these recipes, I was beyond excited to try them out. Here they are--enjoy!!!

Cafe Rio Pulled Pork

You can either eat this as the main dish with spicy mashed potatoes as a side, or you can put it in a tortilla with Cafe Rio rice (see below) and beans or veggies, plus all the fixin's (sour cream, lettuce, guacamole, tomatoes, etc). Either way--you're going to enjoy it :o)

Cafe Rio Pulled Pork
Pork shoulder or butt roast
12 oz. Pace salsa (about 1 1/2 cups)
3/4 cup brown sugar

Combine the salsa and sugar, and pour over the meat in crock pot. Cook on low for 8-10 hours, depending on how high your crock pot cooks. Rotate every now and then to keep bottom from sticking. An hour before serving, shred the meat--then return it to the crock pot and let it cook in the sauce for another hour.

Cafe Rio Rice

As stated before, this is great in a flour tortilla with the pulled pork. The best way I've had it, however, is at the bottom of a toasted tortilla with a little cheese, then topped with black beans, lettuce, guacamole, pico de gallo, cilantro sprigs, shredded chicken and crunchy tortilla strips. Then comes the magic: Creamy Tomatillo dressing. But that's another post... (see below :o)

Cafe Rio Rice
3 cups water
1 can green chilies
1/2 bunch cilantro, stems removed
1/2 onion
4 tsp. chicken base or bouillon
4 tsp. garlic, minced
3/4 tsp. salt
1 Tbsp. butter
2 cups rice

Bring water to boil. While waiting, blend cilantro, green chilies and onion together in food processor till pureed. Once water is boiling, add all ingredients, including puree--then cover and simmer 30 minutes.

Cafe Rio Creamy Tomatillo Dressing

I honestly don't know what to say about this dressing... I hear it has caffeine in it, and that's why it's so addicting--but this recipe doesn't have it, and it's still good. So there!

Cafe Rio Creamy Tomatillo Dressing
1 1/3 cups sour cream
3/4 cup mayonnaise
1 bunch cilantro
1 package dry ranch dressing mix
4 Tbsp. salsa verde (green salsa made with tomatillos)
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/8 tsp. Tabasco sauce
juice of 1 lime

Mix together all ingredients in the blender... and enjoy!

Monday, July 7, 2008

Chicken Divan

My friend Kari requested this one... I'm sure you all have some variation on this recipe, but I think the curry makes it something special!

Mom's Chicken Divan
6 chicken breasts, cooked and cubed
2-3 pkgs. frozen broccoli florets (or abt. 1 head fresh), cooked and drained
2 cans cream of chicken soup
3/4 cup mayonnaise
1 tsp. curry (or more if you like it)
2 Tbsp. lemon juice

Place broccoli on bottom of casserole dish. Place chicken on top. Mix soup, mayo, curry powder and lemon juice. Pour over top of broccoli and chicken. Sprinkle with paprike and parmesan cheese. Bake at 350 for 40-50 minutes.
Serve over rice.


Yum is all I have to say...

Quick, Easy & Delicious Pesto
3 packed cups fresh basil leaves (stems removed)
2 large fresh garlic cloves
1/2 cup pinenuts
3/4 cup packed fresh parsley
3/4 cup fresh grated parmesan cheese
1/2 cup olive oil
1/4 melted butter
salt to taste

Combine everything in a blender or food processor on low, then medium speed. Thoroughly work everything into a smooth paste. Toss with hot, drained pasta or spoon onto hot gnocchi. Also fantastic as a side to dip bread in...

*** I use this pesto recipe to make my Pesto Chicken Pasta.