Did you know that bloggers have networks…communities…professional organizations? Well, we do! I work with hundreds of fabulously talented bloggers, as well as marketing and media professionals and corporate executives, from around the country. I communicate, work and collaborate with them all through the Internet. Occasionally, those connections are made on my own, and sometimes, they are made through one of my favorite blogging communities, Social Fabric, which is the blogger side of a marketing organization called #Collective Bias. Through Social Fabric, I’ve had the opportunity to work with Tyson Foods, creating several recipes and writing posts for them. It’s been one of my favorite connections, since chicken is a primary staple in all my family menu plans and I love the challenge of thinking outside the box to develop a new dish that will be perfect for family dinner.
Tyson Chicken is a freezer staple for me. I pretty much use it all, from the 10 lb bag of flash frozen chicken breasts, that I buy at Sam’s Club, to all the great varieties of “Grilled and Ready” pre-cooked options in the freezer case at my local Walmart. I’ve come to rely on the quality, quick-fix choices I have with Tyson to put together great meals for my family. The Oven-Roasted Diced Chicken Breast, above, was exactly what I needed to make my Chicken and Spinach Mexican Lasagna and to save me time in the kitchen, so I could focus on packing. And I’m not talking about packing the house for our move. 🙂 Did you guess it? I’m taking a trip!
About two weeks ago, I received an invitation from Tyson, through Social Fabric, to attend SoFabCon as a Tyson VIP! Woot! What’s SoFabCon, you ask? And why am I so excited? It’s only THE hottest annual blogging conference, for working bloggers, and it’s organized by…you guessed it…Social Fabric — thus, So.Fab.Con. Attending this event in Bentonville, Arkansas has been a dream of mine since the very first SoFabCon. While most of you get to see the people you work with face-to-face on a daily basis, I have never laid eyes on my co-workers, many of whom have become friends through our years of collaboration. This conference is a way to finally meet them and that is one of several reasons that attending, this year, really is a dream-come-true. I can’t wait to get to visit with people who are not only blogging professionals, whose work I respect, but that I also count among my friends. I’m only just a LITTLE bit excited! lol
Two days of corporate networking, blogger training sessions and some of the most knowledgeable speakers in the business are other reasons I can’t wait to attend. I can select from sessions on photography, writing great content, boosting SEO and using video in my blogging, to name just a few. The training encompasses more opportunities than I am able to highlight in this one post, but I can tell you, it will only make Busy-at-Home better and more informative, for you. I’ll be excited to share some of the things I learn.
Last, and one of the most spectacular things about attending as a Tyson VIP, is that I will get to visit the Tyson Foods National Headquarters, tour the facility, visit with the people, there, and visit one of their farms. Who knows? I may even get to stick my wooden spoon into the test kitchens! I’ll let you know all the details, when I get back home, but be sure to watch my Facebook and Twitter accounts, during the conference (May 8-11) for quick updates about everything I’m doing.
Besides the “work”, (I have the BEST job anywhere…just sayin’ ), I will also be attending a cocktail party at Crystal Bridges Art Museum, participating in a #MealsTogether night out with my blogging friends, (also sponsored by Tyson Foods), going to a slumber party, and even donning a festive mask for a masquerade ball to celebrate Social Fabric’s 5th birthday! I know, I know…it’s a rough life.
I also have a secret partner who will travel with me and attend all these fabulous events. Be watching the blog and my social media for surprise appearances!
In the meantime, my family will be fending for themselves while I am gone for four days. Of course, I’m not going to leave them totally in the lurch. I’m prepping all kinds of delicious dishes to make their “roughing it” easier to bear. It will be no work at all for them to get hot and tasty meals on the table when I’m gone and I’m betting they won’t miss me, too much, at all. One dish that I’m leaving them is Chicken and Spinach Mexican Lasagna. Not only is it scrumptious, it’s also gluten-free! Enjoy!
- 1 (22 oz) bag Tyson Grilled and Ready Oven Roasted Diced Chicken Breast
- 3 cups fresh spinach, finely chopped
- 1 medium red bell pepper, fine diced
- 4 large green onions, sliced
- 1 (24 oz) carton small curd cottage cheese
- 1 cup sour cream
- 2 (10 oz) cans diced tomatoes with chiles, undrained
- ½ cup chicken stock
- 1 Tablespoon fresh garlic, minced
- 1 Tablespoon cumin powder
- 2 Tablespoons fresh cilantro, minced
- 4½ cups Monterey Jack, Cheddar or Colby cheese, shredded
- 15 (6 inch) corn tortillas, gluten-free
- sea salt and fresh black pepper, to taste
- optional, for garnish, sour cream, diced tomatoes, chopped cilantro, avocado slices, black olives
- Mince and chop the vegetables and cilantro. combine in a large mixing bowl.
- Add cumin and garlic to diced veggies.
- Stir vegetables and spices together, then season to taste with sea salt and fresh black pepper.
- Add the cottage cheese and sour cream to the vegetable mixture. Stir well.
- Add the chicken stock and both cans of diced tomatoes with chiles to the cottage cheese vegetable filling.
- Stir to combine.
- Grate 4½ cups of your favorite cheeses. You can use all one kind or a combination. I used Colby and Monterey Jack.
- Lightly spray a 9x13 baking pan to prevent sticking.
- Cut the tortillas in half.
- Begin layering tortillas in the bottom of your prepared pan.
- I started with the corners of my pan and worked toward the center, tearing pieces of tortilla to fill in "holes" in the layer. Use 5 tortillas in the first layer, arranging them to completely cover the bottom of the pan.
- Spoon ⅓ of the cottage cheese and veggie filling over the tortilla layer.
- Sprinkle ⅓ of the diced chicken over the chicken.
- Sprinkle 1½ cups of shredded cheese over the chicken layer.
- Repeat all layers two more times.
- Bake in a 350 degree oven for 45 minutes or until casserole is hot and bubbly around the edges.
- We served ours with sour cream, diced tomatoes and chopped cilantro. Avocado slices or black olives would also be good.