Southwestern & Tex-Mex
Mexican Avocado Burgers
This terrific burger is sprinkled with a spice mix halfway through grilling; if you mix it in before cooking, the meat will get tough. Garnishes of crema and avocado add rich creaminess.
Zucchini, Corn, Black-Bean, and Jack-Cheese Quesadillas
The grated zucchini and defrosted frozen corn that fill these tasty quesadillas contain a lot of moisture. Drain them on paper towels for a few minutes before using; otherwise, you'll end up with soggy tortillas. Serve the quesadillas with spicy salsa.
Chicken and Cheese Enchiladas Verdes
Following her Mexican grandmother's recipe, Marie Hejl first dips the tortillas in a fresh tomatillo sauce, then fries them in oil.
Chili first made its appearance in the early 1800s as “chili con carne.” It was billed as a favorite dish in Mexico, although it originated in the American Southwest and was reportedly loathed by Mexicans. Chili rose to great popularity in the 1930s, after World War I had made all-American foods stylish.
Barbecued Spiced Shrimp with Tomato Salad
The big, bold Southwestern flavors in this shrimp seasoning—which include pure ancho chile powder, smoked paprika, cumin and brown sugar—epitomize Bobby Flay’s style. The seasoning mix would also be terrific on pork chops or beef tenderloin.
Chicken Burritos with Black-Bean Salsa and Pepper Jack
Pepper Jack cheese looks innocent enough but adds a nice kick to these burritos. If you prefer a milder taste, use regular Jack instead.
Quick Chicken-and-Cheese Tamales
Grace Parisi mixes store-bought rotisserie chicken and cheddar cheese into a quick dough, then she wraps the tamales in plastic before steaming them.
Blood Orange Margaritas
The sweet-tart blood orange flavor intensifies the margarita-ness of this variation on the popular drink.
You’ll get a clear taste of cumin in this great cold-weather chili made with ground beef, beans, and green bell pepper. If you want a hotter chili, add as much cayenne as you like.
Baked Huevos Rancheros
Traditional huevos rancheros are fried eggs served over tortillas and smothered in sauce and cheese. Here, Grace Parisi bakes eggs, tortilla chips and cheese in a seasoned tomato sauce in individual gratin dishes. For more sophisticated eaters, swap pepper Jack for the Monterey Jack to get a spicy kick.
Chipotle Shrimp Tostadas
To create this Southwestern-inspired dish, Melissa Rubel tosses shrimp with chipotle chile powder (made from dried, smoked jalapeños), grills them, then layers them on top of crunchy fried corn tortillas and crisp, citrusy slaw.
Bacon, Cheese and Jalapeño Tacos
Rayme Rossello's addictive bacon tacos are pressed on a griddle, and eaten more like quesadillas.
Green-Chile Burgers with Fried Eggs
Spicy Turkey Posole
Posole is a hearty Mexican soup or stew made with hominy (dried corn kernels with the hull and germ removed) and pork or poultry. The recipe is an excellent way to use up leftover turkey.
Meat-Stuffed Poblanos with Cilantro-Lime Sauce
These classic quesadillas are perfect for a summertime Fourth of July party. The leftovers make for a quick, easy-to-reheat lunch the next day.
Chicken, Cheese and Mushroom Enchiladas with Sour Cream Slaw
A crunchy coleslaw made with a sour cream dressing is a cooling accompaniment to this spicy sauced enchiladas.
“Most people prefer margaritas either frozen or on the rocks. In Texas, it's the same with refried beans versus charro,” says Tim Love. Refried beans are made with mashed pintos; for charro—a Tex-Mex take on pork and beans—the beans are served whole in a spicy broth.
In this play on nachos, chef Gonzalo Martinez tops a chunky guacamole with gooey melted cheese.
Chicken-Chili Tamale Pie
This chicken chili tamale pie recipe combines two Southern comfort foods in one dish: the spicy corn and chicken chili is topped with buttery and cheesy corn bread.