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Quick and Easy Halloween Supper

By Jane Butel  October 30, 2018

Halloween in Mexico is the celebration known as the Day of the Dead--actually I prefer to think of it as the eve of All Saints Day.  No matter how you wish to celebrate it--Halloween is a great time to get together and party.  Since Halloween is on Wednesday night this year, perhaps a simple supper might be best, to have time to share with the Trick or Treaters.

Then, save the party for the weekend.  For a yummy and quick simple supper, try my  Chile-Sparked Sweet  Potato Soup topped with crispy Toasted  Tortilla Shoestrings.  A crisp salad or simple sandwich will complete your meal.   To keep in the orange and black color scheme, make a Pumpkin Pudding.  Both of these recipes are in my "Quick and Easy Southwestern Cookbook".

If you want a more substantial dinner, try my Chile Sage Pork Chops with Black-Eyed Pea Salsa and chipotle-Roasted Garlic Mashed Potatoes, also in my "Quick and Easy Southwestern Cookbook", pages 43 and 200.

I will continue my very special pricing on autographed copies of the original "Quick and Easy Cookbook"--the hard bound, originally $23.00 is now half price or $12.50 and the softbound, reprinted cookbook  originally at $19.50 is now $15.50.   Special pricing good until midnight, November 1.

And, we still have some spaces left in our November 9-11 full participation weekend cooking class for half price, only  $525.00, where we make the best of New Mexican traditional dishes.  It is a beautiful time to visit our state in all of its fall color.

If you are starting to think of holiday gift giving, keep in mind our gift certificates for classes or products and very special gift boxes.  Also check out our weekend, week long and Oaxaca tour for those special people on your gift list.

Enjoy my selected recipes--


This hearty soup is wonderful for lunch, served with just a crunch of baked tortilla shoestrings. Serve the soup with a sandwich for a light dinner.

Yield: 4 servings

2 medium sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into ½” dice

4 scallions, thinly sliced (1 tablespoon sliced tops reserved for garnish)

1 cup evaporated skim milk

1 Tablespoon ground pure hot red chile, or to taste

Few grates of fresh nutmeg

Baked tortilla shoestrings for garnish (optional)

1. Place the potatoes, scallions, and 1 cup water in a 2-quart glass or microwaveable plastic bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and microwave on full power for 10 minutes. Or, to cook conventionally, place the ingredients in a heavy, medium saucepan, cover and simmer for 15 minutes, or until fork-tender.

2. Transfer potato mixture to a food processor. Add the milk and 2 teaspoons of the chile and process until pureed. Stir in the nutmeg. Return to the 2-quart container and microwave for about 2 minutes, or until hot. Serve garnished with reserved chile and scallion.

PER SERVING: Calories 388, Protein 335 g, Carbohydrates 34 g, Fiber 4 g, Fat 12 g, Saturated Fat 2 g, Cholesterol 96 mg, Sodium 661 mg.

Reprinted with permission from Jane Butel’s Quick and Easy Southwestern Cookbook.


This dessert is most easily made with canned pumpkin; however, if you prefer the taste of sweet potatoes, just puree a 15 ounce can of drained sweet potatoes or bake or stew 1 1/2 pounds of fresh sweet potatoes until done.

Yield: 6 to 8 servings

Baking time: 5 to 7 minutes in a microwave oven, 30 to 40 minutes in a conventional oven at 350 

2 cups pureed pumpkin or sweet potato (1, 15 oz. can)

1 1/2 cups evaporated skim milk

1 large egg, plus 1 egg white

1/2 cup firmly packed  light brown sugar

2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice or 1/4 teaspoon each ground ginger, nutmeg, allspice and cloves

1. In a blender, combine the pumpkin (or sweet potato), milk. egg and egg white, brown sugar and spice.  process to blend well.  Pour the mixture into 6 to 8 buttered baking dishes.

2. Place in the mixrowave oven and cook on high for 5 minutes (see *Note) or until a table knife inserted in the center comes out clean.  Cook for another minute or two, if needed.  Serve warm.

*Note:  Or, preheat a conventional oven to 350f. Place the baking dishes in a pan large enough to hold them.  Add hot water to about halfway up the sides of the baking dishes.  Place the pan in the oven and bake for 30 to 40 minutes, until an inserted knife comes out clean,

PER SERVING: (1/8 recipe) Calories 157, Protein 5 g, Carbohydrates, 33 g, Fiber 4 g, Fat 1 g,  Saturated Fat 0 g, CHolesterol 28 mg, Sodium 186 mg. (Analyzed with Pumpkin.)

Recipe reprinted with permission from Quick and Easy Southwestern Cookbook  by Jane Butel.






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