Enchirritos

What is your first thought when you hear the word Enchirritos??  GO!!  For me it is Taco Bell.  I had never even heard of them before Taco Bell.  Unfortunately, like most fast food, Taco Bell left a horrible taste in my mouth.  Luckily, over time, my palette and budget has drastically improved.  And thanks to my Mexican husband, so has my understanding of Mexican food.  Now  a pet peeve of mine is when someone calls a burrito with sauce an enchilada.  If it’s a flour tortilla, it’s not an enchilada.  And that is what I love about this enchirrito.  It’s not pretending to be something it’s not. This enchirrito is no resting on the hard work of its parent to define it as either a burrito or an enchilada.  This enchirrito is standing proud, telling everyone it is of a mixed “race”.  Part enchilada, part buritto.  Embracing both of its cultures.  All hale the Enchirrito!

Ingredients:

1/4 cup butter
1/4 cup flour
4 cups water
3 Tbs Mexican Blend Seasoning (Morton & Bassett)
1 tsp garlic salt
1 lb ground beef (I always buy the lowest fat; but you can also sub chicken or turkey)
1 lb ground sausage
1/4 cup chopped onion (Look at the pre-chopped in the produce aisle.  It looks expensive until you calculate the value of your time chopping it.)
1 cup refried beans (I used Rosarita Traditional)
8 flour tortillas (8 inches) warmed (the best way to warm tortillas, no matter what anyone says, is with a skillet. Warm the first one on medium high and as you fill it, warn the next one, be sure to turn over at least once)
3 cups shredded cheese (I used a Mexican blend from the dairy aisle)
Optional toppings: shredded lettuce; diced tomatoes, sour cream

Preparation:

Preheat oven to 350°.  Melt butter in a large sauce pan.  Sir in flour until smooth.  Slowly add water.  Bring to a boil and cook, stirring until thickened (about 1 minute).  Stir in Mexican Blend Seasoning and garlic salt. Bring to a boil.  Reduce heat and simmer uncovered for 10 minutes

In a large skillet over medium heat, cook beef, sausage, and onion until meat is no longer pink; drain.  Stir in beans; heat through.

Spread 1/4 cup of the in a greased 9×13 baking dish.  Spread 1 Tbs sauce in the center of a tortilla and spread around  Place 2/3 cup meat mixture down center of tortilla.  Top with 1/4 cup shredded cheese.  Roll up and place seam side down  Once all tortillas are complete, pour remaining sauce over top. Sprinkle with remaining cheese (add a handful if you need to, no one will judge.)  Bake uncovered 18-22 minutes or until bubbly and cheese is melted.

Wine Pairing Suggestions:

Cabernet Franc
Gamay
Grenache
Merlot
Sangiovese

Serves: 6 big servings

Total time: 50 minutes

*Derived from Mandy’s Recipe Box
Enchirritos

Enchirritos


Tortilla and Black Bean Pie

This is a wonderful, completely filling No Meat Monday.  What makes this even better, there are so many things you can add, adjust.  The possibilities are endless! Add a touch of enchilada sauce to each layer.  Or, add a thin layer of refried beans. Can’t hang without your meat?  Go ahead, add some!  Use corn tortillas.  For an extra fresh, crisp taste, top with sour cream, shredded lettuce and diced tomato.  Don’t forget the avocado!

Ingredients:

4 10″ flour tortillas (or slightly smaller, see below)
2 Tbs olive oil
1 large onion diced
2 garlic cloves, minced
½ tsp Mexican Blend seasoning (Such as Morton & Bassett)
Coarse salt and fresh ground black pepper, to taste
2 cans (15 oz each) black beans, drained and rinsed (always check sodium levels, even “low sodium” can be quite high)
12 oz beer, or 1 1/2 cup vegetable broth (I used Corona, but any would do)
1 (10 oz) pkg frozen corn
1 jalapeño chile, minced (remove seeds and ribs for less heat) optional
4 scallions, thinly sliced, optional
2 ½ cups Mexican blend cheese

Preparation:

Preheat oven to 400.  While oven heats, drain and rinse beans.   If using 10″ tortilla, grab a paring knife and trim down to fit spring form pan.  Use the bottom of the pan as a guide.  I used a slightly small tortilla because it’s what I had on hand.  Even though there was some extra space on the sides, the smaller tortillas worked just fine.

Heat oil in large skillet over medium high heat.  Add onion, garlic, jalapeño (if using), and Mexican blend seasoning.  Season with salt and pepper.  Cook, stirring occasionally, until softened (5-7 minutes).

Add beans, beer (or vegetable broth), bring to a boil.  Reduce heat to medium, simmer until liquid has almost evaporated (8-10 minutes).  Stir in corn and scallions (if using) and remove from heat.  Taste and adjust seasoning to taste.

Place tortilla in bottom of springform pan; layer with ¼ of bean mixture and ½ cup of cheese.  Repeat three times, using 1 cup of cheese on top layer.  Bake until heated through and cheese melts, 20-25 minutes.  Remove side of pan, sprinkle with scallions (optional).  Slice into wedges to serve.

Wine Pairing Suggestions:

Albariño
Zinfandel

Tortilla & Black Bean Pie

Tortilla & Black Bean Pie

*Derived from Everyday Food


Beef Enchiladas

The other night I had a nice big steak I bought to practice my searing skills. Sounds weird, I know. But that’s just how I roll!  LOL  Anyway, I had steak leftover and didn’t want it to go to waste.  I know a lot of people here in the United States like to make enchiladas with ground meat, but ground meat isn’t an often used ingredient in Mexico.  But steak is.  And I had enough to for these amazing, thumbs up enchiladas.  Oh, and if anyone tells you to use anything other than corn tortillas for enchiladas, let them know that it is then no longer an enchilada, but a burrito with sauce.  Here are a couple of tips for working with corn tortillas – first, use white corn whenever possible, they are more pliable; and second, warm the tortillas (no more than 2 at a time) in a skillet on medium to low heat.  Be sure to just warm and not cook, this will make them pliable for rolling without cracking or splitting.

Ingredients:

1 lb diced steak (you can sub with ground meat of your choice)
2 cups Quick and Easy Enchilada Sauce (can sub 16 oz no sugar added red enchilada sauce or salsa)
1/s tsp garlic powder
1 tsp Mexican Blend seasoning (such as Morton & Bassett)
1/2 tsp black pepper
1 ½ cups shredded cheddar cheese
1 cup reduced-fat sour cream (or plain Greek yogurt)
10 white corn tortillas
*for some heat, you can add a 4 oz can of green chile peppers

Preparation:

In large skillet, heat the steak through.  If using ground meat, cook over medium heat, breaking up while cooking.  Drain off any fat.

In a medium mixing bowl, add meat, garlic powder, Mexican blend seasoning, salt and pepper to taste. Stir to combine.  Next add 1/2 cup of enchilada sauce, 1/2 cup sour cream, and 1 cup of cheese.  Mix well.

Warm tortillas in skillet and place 1/2 cup meat mixture in center of tortilla.  Roll tightly and place seam side down in large baking dish lightly sprayed with non-stick cooking spray.  Combine the remaining enchilada sauce and 1/2 cup sour cream, spread over enchiladas.  Sprinkle remaining cheese over top and tent loosely with aluminum foil and bake until bubbly, about 30 minutes.  Remove from oven and garnish with your lettuce, tomato, avocado, sour cream, etc.

Wine Pairing Suggestions:

Grenache
Merlot
Sangiovese

Serves 6

Prep time: 30 minutes; Cooking time: 30 minutes

Beef Inchiladas

Beef Enchiladas

*Derived from Skinnyms.com

Mexican Stuffed Shells

I decided to try something a little different for Taco Tuesday, combining my love for Mexican and Italian food. Seriously, what is not to love about this concept? Rich spicy flavor in the meat and sauce. Stuffed into pasta. Let me say that again for affect, stuffed INTO pasta. The spicy gooyness of the meat, stuffed into the delicate pasta shell. This truly seems like a dish that was invented for me! And I welcomed it with open arms!

Ingredients:

1 lb ground beef (or any meat of your choosing, can even go with something similar to soyrizo for vegetarians)
4 Tbs Morton & Basset Mexican Blend seasoning (this is truly my Go-To Mexican flavor. Do not waste your time with taco seasoning packets.)
1/2 cup cream cheese (I used plain, but you could play around with this and use flavored cream cheese, such as sun-dried tomato, garlic and herb, maybe even a garden vegetable)
14-16 jumbo pasta shells
1 1/2 cup salsa (I always use fresh whenever I can and the deli section of my local market helps me achieve that)
1 cup taco sauce (this will be a smooth, tomato based sauce with varying degrees of heat, found in the Mexican section)
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1 cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese
*Additional toppings such as sliced green onions, tomatoes, lettuce, olives, and / or sour cream (this is the chance to get creative, even add jalapeños!)

Preparation:

Start large pot of water to boil.  In frying pan, brown meat, add the Mexican Blend seasoning and 1 ¹⁄³ cups of water.  Let the water cook down by about half.  Add cream cheese and simmer until cheese has melted, stirring occasionally.  Set aside to cool.  While meat is cooking, add pasta shells to water and cook according to package directions.  Drain pasta shells and set out individually on flat surface so they don’t stick together.

Preheat oven to 350°.  Spray 9×13 baking dish with nonstick cooking spray.  Pour salsa on bottom of dish.  Stuff each shell with the meat mixture and place open side up in baking dish.  Cover shells with taco sauce.  Cover dish with foil and back for 30 minutes.  Remove foil and add shredded cheese; bake for 10-15 more minutes until cheese is golden brown.

Wine Pairing Suggestions:

Beaujolais
Malbec
Merlot
Syrah / Shiraz
Zinfandel

Serves 4

Total time: About an hour

Mexican Stuffed Shells

Mexican Stuffed Shells

*Derived from The Way to His Heart

Fat Taquitos

Sometimes I wonder if my life resembles the chicken and the egg a little.  Did my love for Mexican food come before my love for a Mexican?  Or did my love for a Mexican enhance my love of Mexican food?  As long as I can remember I’ve loved Mexican food.  Hot, spicy Mexican food.  Then I fell in love with a Mexican and found a whole new appreciation for Mexican food, and, well, all things Mexican in general.  And that brings me to my Fat Taquitos.  I’m always on the hunt for Mexican food recipes, and for new ways to make Mexican food.  And one of the strongest Mexican food critics sits at my table!  I had a feeling these were going to be good, but did feel a bit apprehensive as I set the plate down at lunch a few Saturdays ago.  Would they pass muster?  Would I be sent back to the drawing board?  They passed muster!  And I got a thumbs up from one of my little foodies!! 

Ingredients:

8 small (6″) corn tortillas
1½ cups shredded chicken
½ cup prepared salsa (I like to use the fresh salsa usually found in the produce section)
½ cup shredded cheddar cheese
¼ tsp Morton & Bassett Mexican Blend seasoning
Sour cream and guacamole for dipping

Preparation:

In a medium bowl, thoroughly mix the chicken and salsa.  Cover and refrigerate for 15 minutes.

While chicken and salsa is in refrigerator, begin warming tortillas for use. In a small skillet heated to medium-warm add one tortilla at a time.  You want to warm the tortilla and not cook it.  When tortilla is warmed on both sides, set aside and keep warm.  Continue with all tortillas

Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and preheat the oven to 375°.  Remove chicken salsa mixture from refrigerator and drain any liquid.  Add cheese and Mexican Blend seasoning.  Combine well.

Take one tortilla and lightly brush what will be the outside with olive or canola oil.  Lay on clean, dry surface and spoon about 2 tablespoons of filling down the middle of the tortilla.  Roll tightly and place seam side down on prepared baking sheet.  Repeat with remaining tortillas and filling.  Add a sprinkling of kosher salt across the tops.

Bake 14-16 minutes, until crispy.  You might need to pop on the broiler for a few minutes.  Serve with enchilada sauce, salsa, sour cream, and / or guacamole!

Wine Pairing Suggestions:

Malbec
Merlot
Pinot Noir
Sangiovese
Sauvignon Blanc

Serves 4

Prep time: 20 minutes; Baking time: 16 minutes

Taquito

*Derived from Hungry Girl