Guess what, you guys! I got a new cookbook! I bought The Happy Herbivore, and so far I’m digging it. This the first meal I’ve made from the book, but I’ll be making another one tomorrow night, and I’m interested to see how it comes out.
This recipe for Tamale Casserole reminded me of a family dish we used to make called Tamale Pie. And while this dish bears little resemblance to the meat and cheese-filled heart-attack-inducing disaster that tasty item was, I loved it. I did make a few substitutions, which ended up with me having six portions instead of the recipe’s original four. Not really a problem, since this kind of casserole almost always tastes better the second day!
So here’s what I did:
- Instead of jarred salsa, I made my own, probably about a cup and a half
- I used 2 cups of beans instead of half a cup
- I added 2 cups of cooked bulgur (though you could use any sort of meaty grain you like)
- I added a small can of diced green chilies (because my husband loves them)
- I added 8 oz of tomato sauce (so that things wouldn’t get dry–they didn’t!)
I really liked my substitutions, because of their enhanced nutritional profile (hello, protein!) and that they bulked this up enough that I didn’t need to divide the cornbread topping. And the cornbread? HELLO. Delicious. I am always skeptical about making applesauce baked goods, but this worked. It didn’t rise much, but I think that’s because I went the extra cornmeal route, since this would be a very corny topping.
Also, serve with Tapatio. You’re welcome.