It’s World Turtle Day. Say What? Yep, World Turtle Day. So what does that mean?
No, we aren’t going to be talking about turtle soup. World Turtle Day is a reminder that we are Stewards of God’s creation. Yes, it’s okay to eat animals. But it’s not okay to kill for the sake of hunting or to wipe out an entire spices simply because it fits our agenda. Some of the helpful hints from the American Tortoise Rescue folks I had never really though about is that we shouldn’t buy turtles from pet shops. It increases the demand for turtles to be taken from the wild. It makes me feel guilty, since we had pet turtles as kids. They didn’t live very long, and I’m sure part of that is because they were never meant to live in a bowl in the first place.
Another good tip, if you see a tortoise crossing a busy street and want to help – make sure you carry the little guy across the street in the same direction he was heading. If you turn him around, he’ll just try to cross again. Much to Hubby’s horror, I’ve made him stop on desert highways so I can carry a tortoise to the other side. He yells at me since you aren’t suppose to stop in the middle of the road, but I say you can see for miles, so you’ll know if someone else is coming.
Turtles are amazing – and look like something from before we walked the earth. Some turtles can live for upwards of 100 years. Can you imagine the stories if a turtle could talk? Despite their popularity when I was growing up, turtles do not make good pets. They can’t chase a ball or learn new tricks. They can carry diseases. And if you do it right, a pet turtle might just end up in your will. These reptiles belong in the wild, with a few exceptions of those ambassadors who educate us at responsible wildlife parks.
If you can, visit a zoo or wildlife park whose sole mission is to educate us and make us better stewards of the planet. You’ll walk away with a better appreciation of all God has entrusted to us.
Today is also Tijuana Tuesday. If everything goes according to plan, we’ve been back in California since Sunday, home safe and sound. It’s been an adventure, and once I get back on track, I’ll be sharing it all with you. I don’t like to talk via Social Media of our adventures until they are over – no need in advertising that you aren’t home for all the world to see. And while I like to share, it’s best in moderation. I don’t know about you, but I just don’t get those posts I see when people are “checking in” at the movies or dinner or whatever. Good for you – have a nice time, but I don’t need to know what you are doing every second of every day. Go live, and when you have a moment, share the highlights.
So today I give you a dinner we enjoyed before our great adventure . . . one that is free of anything reptile or turtle related, unless chicken counts. Have a wonderful Tuesday everyone!
Salas Verde Chicken Casserole
2 boneless Chicken Breasts
Taco Seasoning to taste
1/2 cup Chicken Stock
2 firm Roma Tomatoes
2 Green Onions
1/4 cup Cilantro, minced
1 cup Sour Cream
1-1/2 cups Salsa Verde, divided
8 (6-inch) Corn Tortillas
2 cups Pepper Jack cheese, shredded
1 Avocado, thinly sliced
Note: If chicken breasts are on the larger (thicker) side, split lengthwise to create 4 thinner breasts.
Season chicken breast with taco seasoning. Heat a skillet over medium-high heat. Brown chicken about 3 minutes or so per side. Lower heat to medium. Add chicken stock. Continue to cook breasts another 20 minutes or so, until the chicken is easy to shred. If necessary, add more stock to keep the breasts from drying out.
While the breasts cook, seed and dice tomatoes, set aside. Trim and slice green onions, set aside. Mince cilantro, set aside.
Heat oven to 400 degrees. Spray an 8-inch square baking dish with cooking spray or lightly grease the bottom of the dish.
Once the chicken is cooked through and tender, remove from skillet. Let cool a few minutes, then shred. Combine shredded chicken in a bowl with sour cream and 3/4-cup of the salsa. Set aside.
Spread about 1/4-cup of the salsa in the bottom of the prepared baking dish. Trim tortillas to lay more uniformly in the dish. Layer half of tortillas over the salsa. Spread half of the chicken mixture over the tortillas. Sprinkle chicken with half of the tomatoes, half the cilantro and half of the cheese. Repeat layer with remaining tortillas, chicken, tomatoes, cilantro and cheese.
Place casserole into the heated oven to bake for about 20 minutes. While the casserole bakes, peel and thinly slice the avocado, set aside.
When ready to serve, top casserole with remaining quarter cup salsa, the avocado slices and a scattering of green onions. If desired, serve with additional salsa and sour cream to garnish to individual tastes.
Perfect with a side of refried beans and a pitcher of Margaritas.
Blessed be the Lord day by day: the God of our salvation will make our journey prosperous to us