Adventures of the Heart
Mary Zalmanek
Side Dishes: Calabacitas

I married into a family of fine cooks.  My brother-in-law, Mark Zalmanek, often brings calabacitas, a tasty Mexican squash and corn dish, to family gatherings. 


Serves 4


2 tbsp olive oil
1 small onion, diced
2 cloves of garlic, minced

1/3 red bell pepper, diced

2 small yellow squash or zucchini, diced
1 cup corn kernels, fresh or frozen

1 4-oz can diced green chilies

2 small ripe tomatoes
2 tbsp chopped fresh cilantro leaves

½ tsp oregano
½ tsp course sea salt

½ cup grated cheddar cheese

Heat olive oil in a large skillet and sauté onion for about 4 minutes over medium-high heat. Add the garlic and sauté 2 more minutes. Add the bell pepper, squash and/or zucchini and sauté until softened, about 5 minutes.  Add corn and green chilies and sauté 3 minutes. Stir in the tomatoes, cilantro, oregano and salt and heat through, about 4 minutes.  Remove pan from heat and sprinkle grated cheese on top.  Serve immediately.