I had a variation of this dish when I visited Albuquerque, New Mexico for the Balloon Fiesta in early October of this year. Calabacitas is commonly made with a mixture of corn, squash and onions and freshly roasted Anaheim green chilies. Fresh roasted chilies are absolutely incredible, but they are difficult to come by outside of New Mexico. This version of the dish takes the traditional corn, squash, onion mix and adds canned fire roasted tomatoes with green chilies. It makes a great side dish. We have also eaten it as a main course with the addition of cooked shrimp or langostino. I plan to find lots of other ways to eat Calabacitas. It’s a new family favorite.
Tomato Calabacitas (6 – 8 side servings)
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 medium onion, diced
- 2 cloves garlic, finely diced
- 1 large shallot, finely diced
- ½ teaspoon red pepper flakes
- 5 ears corn, kernels cut off of the cob
- 3 cups squash, cut in ½ inch cubes (I used baby zucchini)
- One 14.5-oz can diced fire roasted tomatoes with green chilies (I used Trader Joe’s brand)
- One 14.5-oz can fire roasted crushed tomatoes
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 3 tablespoons cilantro, finely chopped
- 1 ½ cups grated Mexican Cheese blend (I used Trader Joe’s brand, but other brands will work just as well)
OPTIONAL: 3 cups Langostino or chopped cooked shrimp
Heat olive oil in a large skillet or Dutch Oven over medium-high heat. Sauté the onions, garlic, shallot and red pepper flakes over medium-high heat until they are soft, approximately 10-12 minutes. Add the squash and sauté 5 minutes. Add the corn and both kinds of canned tomatoes and sauté for 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste – I added 2 teaspoons of salt. Stir in the cilantro. Sprinkle the cheese over the top. Serve. If you would prefer this dish with additional protein – add 3 cups of cooked langostino (available frozen at Trader Joe’s or Costco) or chopped cooked shrimp. You’ll want to add them when you stir in the cilantro. You want them to just heat through. If you overcook them they will become tough.