Baked Mexican Pizza

Crunchy Creation

I, like my mother before me, am really good at creating brand new dinner menus using only leftovers as ingredients. Now, as my husband will tell you, this doesn’t always go smoothly. Stir fry with carrots and onions, for instance was a DISMAL failure. But if, like me, you’re responsible for providing dinner for your family mere minutes after you’ve just left a day at the office than you too probably get creative with leftovers.

Last night I found myself looking at a fridge filled with: the remains of a roast chicken, a boatload of tortillas (leftover from this weekend’s taco bar) and some pepper jack cheese. Since I’d taken some of the chicken for lunch I could fathom the idea of eating it again for dinner in it’s current state. So… I created this Baked Mexican Pizza and I knocked last night’s dinner out of the park!

Here’s what I did:

How I Stack Up

Please forgive the shoddy prep photos, I didn’t think this recipe would make it on to the blog so I just used my cell phone. Any how, I pre-set the oven to 400 degrees then I placed a tortilla in the bottom of a cake pan. I layered some refried beans on to the tortilla. Now I had to figure out that chicken. I decided it needed a little Mexican flavor AND it needed to be a bit finer. I put it into my food processor and pulsed it until it resembled taco meat rather than stringy chicken. Then it went into a skillet with a little oil to re-warm. While it cooked I added lemon juice and chili powder to tang it up. Last I added some corn, because I had it opened already. This is a great recipe to “hide” veggies in. Spinach for example would sneak right in there and your kids would never know. On top of the beans I added a layer of chicken and then pepper jack cheese. I repeated this two more times then topped the last tortilla with a little cheese and baked in the oven for 20 minutes. I topped it all off with some fresh salsa (tomatoes, cherry peppers and jalapenos) and some red cabbage (because i had it laying around and I like the crunch). Easy and tasty, by two favorite criteria for a weeknight dinner!

Baked to Perfection