Thursday, November 10, 2011

Are You A Job Creator? Maybe You're Entitled To A Tax Break

When I was downtown the other day, I ran into an old friend. She had such a euphoric grin on her face that I wanted some of whatever she had. “Guess what!” she said. “My name came up on the waiting list. I’m on my way to Nordstrom’s to get my $9,010 Chanel sequined tweed coat. And just in time to claim it.”

“Claim it?” I asked.

 “Yes,” she answered. “Don’t you know that job creators have a special place in our economy? Think of all the jobs I’m creating by buying the coat. It should be worth some tax deductions.”

 “Congratulations,” I said.

 Since I hadn’t been in a store except for the supermarket in months, I realized that with the year almost over, I was falling down on my civic responsibilities. By contrast, my friend was inspired to go out and buy that $1400 pair of shoes to go with the coat. I felt ashamed. After all, we must all do our fair share. There must be something I could do to help. Here I was surrounded by stores. As I was pondering what to buy, a man selling Streetwise, the newspaper written and sold by the homeless, sold me a copy. Thinking that he was doing a worthy project, I paid him extra. Then I asked myself how he was contributing to job creation and hoped that they taxed him to the fullest. Yes, it was time for me to do my fair share, but I was not in the mood to shop so I got my hair done and then went to a restaurant to eat. Feeling that I had done what I could, I went home satisfied with my efforts.

By the time I got home, it was late and I needed to make something quick. Here is a recipe for low-fat enchilada casserole. Prep time is about 20 minutes and it feeds 4.

                                                         Low-Fat Enchilada Casserole

 2 14 ounce cans black or red beans drained of liquid
½ cup chopped onion
4 tsps chili powder
½ tsp freshly ground pepper
2 gloves garlic minced
1 cup water
11.5 oz jar mild taco sauce
6 corn tortillas
1 ¼ cup shredded 2% sharp cheddar cheese
2 green onions finely chopped
shredded lettuce
chopped fresh tomatoes
fat free sour cream for garnish

 Preheat oven to 375° Fahrenheit.

Saute the onion. Add chili powder, cumin, pepper, garlic and water. Simmer uncovered for 10 minutes.

Lightly cover bottom of 9x13” pan with half of taco sauce. Place 3 corn tortillas in bottom of pan cutting tortillas to fit. Spread bean mixture on top of tortillas. Sprinkle with ½ cup of cheese.  Drizzle with remaining taco sauce over cheese and top with remaining 3 tortillas. Sprinkle with remaining cheese.

Cover with aluminum foil and bake for 25 minutes.

Garnish with green onion, tomatoes, sour cream, and lettuce.  Serve.

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