Take Them a Meal. It is a wonderful resource and very easy to use. You can see every date for which a meal is needed, and as people sign up, they list what they will be bringing for everyone to see. That way the poor new parents don't have lasagne and salad every other night for a month!
I'm always stumped as to what to make and take to the next new set of parents, but for some reason fajitas sounded like the thing to deliver this time. Maybe because the new mommy actually transferred from Baylor University to UMass after she got married a year and a half ago, having married a young man from this area, and I thought she might like a little bit of Tex-Mex? I don't know. She's actually from Missouri, not Texas, but she did love her time at Baylor. Or maybe it was that whatever I made for them, I would also be making for our family's meal that night, and everyone's always up for fajitas around here.
Nuts, seeds, grains, and beans are nutritional powerhouses. However, the natural agents that protect them from early germination can wreak havoc in our digestive system. Soaking and sprouting replicates germination, which activates and multiplies nutrients (particularly Vitamins A, B, and C), neutralizes enzyme inhibitors, and promotes the growth of vital digestive enzymes.
We decided to do both beef and chicken fajitas, and I used the same marinade for both. I made sure Robert could be home before 6pm (which was the delivery time) to do the grilling, and had them all ready to go when he returned. As you can probably see from the pictures, we used about 6 chicken breasts and 6-8 strips of sirloin tips.
We sautéed peppers and onion in olive oil with a bit of garlic powder and salt, packaged them up along with the rest of the usual fixings ~ the sprouted and cooked beans, guacamole, salsa, chips ~ and cheese, sour cream, and flour tortillas for the non-paleo folks ~ and enjoyed making the delivery. The best part, though, was holding the precious, now one month old little boy ~ sweetest, cutest little thing. Oh my.
The hardest part for Kayla and Cooper was waiting for us to get back, so we could eat our portion of the meal, which we finally did outside on the picnic table. It was a really beautiful, warm evening. There were even leftovers for lunch today.
There are so, so many recipes out there for meat rubs and marinades that are probably much better than what I've come up with through trial and error and simple ingredients on hand, but in case you just want something super easy and tasty, here's what I did:
Marinade for the Beef and Chicken:
1 tsp chili powder
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp McCormick Montreal Steak Grill Mates (optional, but it's really tasty!)
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
1/4 cup olive oil
Mix dry ingredients/spices together. Add cider vinegar and olive oil and whisk together. Pour over chicken or beef and let sit for 1-4 hours, turning and coating sides alternatively.
Soaked and Sprouted Black Beans:
Sort and rinse 1 package of dry black beans. Place beans in a medium-large bowl and cover with warm water for 10-12 hours. The beans will double in size, so be sure and add plenty of water for the soaking. Drain beans, rinse, and drain again. Leave beans in the bowl or a large jar and cover them loosely with a towel or plastic wrap ~ allowing for some air to reach the beans. Rinse and drain every 4-6 hours until you can pry one open and see a sprout forming, or a tiny sprout emerges from one end of the bean.
For the above black beans, and probably because it was warm outside, this only took an overnight soak and sitting drained and loosely covered on the counter for most of the following day. By 4pm, they were sprouting and ready to cook.
To cook beans, add water to about an inch above the level of the beans. Add salt to taste and a slice of bacon if you like for seasoning. Cook over medium-high for 1.5-2 hours until beans are tender. Add water as they cook if needed.
Sautéed Peppers and Onions:
Slice 1onion and 2 peppers into thin strips or circles. Sauté in 1 Tbsp of olive oil. Add salt and garlic powder to taste as they cook and soften.
Those of us following a Paleo diet here just forgo the tortilla (corn for my GF kids) and fill a bowl with onions, peppers, beans, beef, chicken, guacamole, and salsa. Sometimes we add a bed of lettuce and tomato, too. Everyone else stuffs their tortilla with meat, guac, sour cream, cheese, salsa, and peppers/onions which they truly think is some kind of heavenly meal. I won't tell who it was, but one teenager ate FOUR fajita tacos last night. Someone is going through a growth spurt ~ and I am now officially the shortest person in the family.
Enjoy ~ and have a wonderful weekend!