F3 FAITH & FOOD FRIDAY #3 ~ TEX MEX a.k.a. MEXICAN MANICOTTI ~ BEEF or CHICKEN

I’m still featuring my Mary & Martha GRACE meal prayer box on Faith and Food Friday, hosted by Sandra at Diary of a Stay at Home Mom.

THIS WEEK’S PRAYER:

Some days are busy- we have lots of things to do, and we might not always take a break just to stop and talk to God. But most of us still find the time to eat even when we’re very busy. Taking time to pray before our meals gives us a great opportunity to connect with God. Next time you have a really busy day, enjoy a few minutes in prayer with God before your meal.

CHICKEN MEXICAN MANICOTTI
1 box Uncooked manicotti shells
2 cups shredded rotisserie chicken
1 1/2 cups salsa, divided
1 cup ricotta cheese
1/4 cup FRESH chopped parsley
1 bunch green onions, sliced thin
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2-1 teaspoon Frank’s hot sauce, as desired
1/2 cup shredded Mexican cheese

  • Preheat oven to 400°.
  • Cook manicotti per package directions, al dente.
  • In a medium bowl combine the chicken pieces, 3/4 cup salsa, parsley, most of the green onions, garlic, hot sauce and ricotta cheese.
  • Spread half of the remaining salsa on the bottom of baking dish.
  • Gently fill manicotti shells with chicken mixture and layer on top of salsa in baking dish in a single layer.
  • Spread the remaining salsa on top of manicotti.
  • Cover and bake 40 minutes.
  • Uncover and sprinkle shredded Mexican cheese over top.
  • Bake 10 minutes more.
  • Garnish with remaining green onion and olives.
  • Serve with sour cream.

BEEF MEXICAN MANICOTTI
1 box Uncooked manicotti shells
2 cups browned ground beef
1 1/2 cups salsa, divided
1 cup ricotta cheese
1/4 cup FRESH chopped parsley
1 bunch green onions, sliced thin
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2-1 teaspoon Frank’s hot sauce, as desired
1/2 cup shredded Mexican cheese

  • Preheat oven to 400°.
  • Cook manicotti per package directions, al dente.
  • In a medium bowl combine the chicken pieces, 3/4 cup salsa, parsley, most of the green onions, garlic, hot sauce and ricotta cheese.
  • Spread half of the remaining salsa on the bottom of baking dish.
  • Gently fill manicotti shells with chicken mixture and layer on top of salsa in baking dish in a single layer.
  • Spread the remaining salsa on top of manicotti.
  • Cover and bake 40 minutes.
  • Uncover and sprinkle Mexican cheese over top.
  • Bake 10 minutes more.
  • Garnish with remaining green onion and olives if desired.
  • Serve with sour cream.

F3 ~ FAITH & FOOD FRIDAY #2 ~ AVOCADO & PICKLED RED ONION SALAD

I decided to feature my Mary & Martha GRACE meal prayer box for the next several weeks on Faith and Food Friday, hosted by Sandra at Diary of a Stay at Home Mom. These prayers just seemed apropos for the topic 😀

This week’s prayer:

In a world where so many are hungry, May we eat this food with humble hearts; In a world where so many are lonely, May we share this friendship with joyful hearts. Amen

AVOCADO & PICKLED RED ONION SALAD
2 RIPE avocados, sliced
1 LARGE beefsteak tomato, sliced thick
1/2 small red onion, thinly sliced 
1/4 cup fresh cilantro, coarsely chopped 
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper
1/2 cup apple cider vinegar 
1 LARGE lime, juiced 

  • Pour apple cider vinegar over the onion slices and set aside for 15-30 minutes while you prep the remaining ingredients.
  • Make a single layer of tomatoes on the serving platter.
  • Generously season with FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper.
  • Place the avocado slices on top of tomatoes.
  • Evenly pour lime juice over avocado slices and generously season with FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper.
  • Drain onion slices of excess vinegar and arrange over avocados.
  • Garnish with chopped cilantro and lime slices.

LEMON & HERB MARINATED CHICKEN THIGHS ~ F3 ~ FAITH & FOOD FRIDAY

I have of late been trying desperately to find focus in my life and get off the crazy carousel of revolving doors. Sandra’s new feature, Faith & Food Friday, is literally a blessing in disguise for me.

We are searching for a “FINAL” project house and being able to plant roots for a place to bloom continuously.  This has brought into question many things – beginning and ending with my faith, values, beliefs and desires to be where I am meant to be in this life. I want and need to be where I can be the most productive, happiest, healthiest and helpful to others.

While we’re still searching, though we’re pretty sure where it will be, we have at least RULED out many places this past year. So, finding this outlet through Sandra to help me focus on the faith portion is a god send to me.

One of my daily loves is my Mary and Martha devotions collection books, journals and simple cards.  I decided to randomly select a card to begin this series with and was aptly rewarded: 😀

“In the midst of life’s messiness, God really is making something beautiful… something good.

LEMON & HERB MARINATED CHICKEN THIGHS adapted from Anne Burrell
Juice and zest of 4 lemons, plus 2 whole lemons
5 sprigs fresh rosemary, FINELY chopped
5 sprigs fresh thyme, FINELY chopped
3 cloves garlic, smashed and finely chopped
1/2 + teaspoon crushed red pepper
1/2 cup avocado oil
8 chicken thighs, trimmed of excess fat
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper

  • Whisk together the lemon juice and zest, chopped herbs, garlic, crushed red pepper, and 1/2 cup of avocado oil in a small bowl.
  • Generously season chicken thighs with FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper.
  • Add chicken thighs to a large Ziplock bag.
  • Pour oil mixture over thighs.
  • Close bag and move chicken pieces around to coat well.
  • Refrigerate overnight.
  • Preheat grill.
  • Spray grill with non-stick grill spray.
  • Remove the chicken from the marinade and brush off any excess herbs and oil.
  • Pour remaining marinade through a sieve to remove the herb and garlic chunks.
  • Cut remaining whole lemons into thick slices.
  • Place the chicken, skin side down, and the lemons on the preheated grill.
  • Grill the chicken for 3 to 4 minutes and then rotate the chicken 90 degrees to create the lovely crosshatch pattern.
  • Grill for another 3 to 4 minutes.
  • Brush with remaining marinade periodically.
  • Turn the chicken over and grill for another 4 to 5 minutes.
  • Check for done ness.
  • Check the lemons to see if they are beautifully caramelized.
  • Flip over to grill on the other side for 2 to 3 minutes.
  • Serve the chicken with grilled lemon.

Join our host, Sandra at Diary of a Stay at Home Mom
to link up with Faith and Food Friday.