Monday, October 18, 2010

Green Enchiladas (boy, it's been awhile!)

Well.  Here I am after a year.  It's been a long, strange trip indeed!
I just turned 32 on Sunday.  I made green enchiladas today.  A friend asked for the recipe, so here we go!

I wasn't planning to blog this. The image was done with my cell phone camera.  We must all deal with it.

I didn't use a recipe!

But, I'll make one up for what I did!

Useful tools:
a saucepan that will hold at least four cups of liquid
a baking pan with high sides (I used a 9X13 Wilton baking pan.  Glass casserole dishes are handy, too)
a sharp kitchen knife (you'll need to to cut your onion)
a stick blender (or a heat resistant blender/food processor)
tongs (for gently frying the tortillas and not your fingers)
a whisk if you don't have a stick blender
a sexy ladle (or a non-sexy ladle, if you prefer)
measuring cups, spoons
head-sized bowl
a couple forks (to shred the chicken)

For the sauce
1 28 oz can of Tomatillos (or similar amount equaling 1lb, 12 oz)
4 cloves of garlic, mushed or whole.  Whatever!  No pesky, smelly dicing!
1 half a yellow or white onion (or go nuts and try a red onion!), roughly chopped
a handful of cilantro, which is approximately 1/4 cup of loosely packed leaves and stems (please rinse it!)
1 teaspoon cumin
1/4 cup sour cream
salt to taste (I sprinkled in maybe a half a teaspoon at most)
(optional) a tablespoon of starch mixed with about three tablespoons of water to thicken stuff up at the end
the water leftover from poaching the chicken (I guess there was about 2 cups of chickeny water in there)

For spicy heat:
I used one little bird chili pepper.

1 jalapeño would be good, instead (pickled would add more tang to the flavour of the recipe).  Maybe a teaspoon of cayenne, if you'd really like some kicky heat.  A single scotch bonnet/habanero would also provide a great deal of burn.  To reduce the heat of a fresh chili, CAREFULLY remove the seeds.
I think a little experience with chili peppers would come in handy, here, but you can be ballsy and try something new!

For the rest:
about a pound of chicken breast, poached (check this out for how to do that!)
12 corn tortillas

about 1 cup of oil for frying the tortillas (a note on that video: PLEASE do not fry your tortillas with your FINGERS.  :(  Use tongs.  Sheesh.)
about 2 cups of shredded cheddar, monterey jack cheese or similar textured cheese, separated into 1 cup each


1. Poach your chicken.  Save your water for the sauce.
2. While the chicken is cooking, get the skins off your garlic cloves and prep your onion.
3. Pop open your can of tomatillos.
4. Remove cooked chicken from the water and set it aside to shred.
5. Pour all contents of tomatillo can into the saucepan of chicken water.  Add onion and garlic and any heat seasonings you wish to use.
6. Bring to a boil until onion is soft.
7. Reduce heat to a simmer.  Season with cumin and salt.  Add the cilantro.
8. Blend the heck out of it with your stick blender or in your heat-resistant blender/food processor.  Blend 'til smooth.
9. Optional thickening: Return to heat and slowly add the starch and water mix.  If you are using the stick blender, keep it running while you do this.  If you do not have one, use a whisk during this stage.

You should have a pretty decent amount of enchilada sauce now!

10. Take two forks and use one to hold the chicken in place and the other to drag across the surface of the chicken.  This action should produce shredded chicken!
11. In a head-sized bowl: mix chicken with sour cream, about 1/2 cup to 3/4 cups of your enchilada sauce, 1 cup of cheese.  Set aside.  This is your filling.  Stuff is really coming together now!
12. Ladle a coating of enchilada sauce into the bottom of your baking pan.  Make sure it's all covered or things might stick to the pan and then you have enchilada mush!
12. Fry your tortillas in hot oil.  Just barely.  If it's hard and crispy, you're set for tostadas...  I usually fry 3-4 at a time and then...
13. Place about 2 tablespoons of filling in your fried tortilla and roll it up.  Place it seam down in the pan.  Lay them side by side.
14. Once you have all your rolls done, spoon more sauce over the top and then sprinkle with the other cup of cheese.
15. Cheat time and put your oven rack up high, turn on the broiler and brown the top of your enchiladas until they're bubbly and awesome.  Be careful!  Don't leave the stove for a second.  It WILL burn when you turn away, out of spite.
If the broiler makes you uncomfy, try baking at about 450°F and see how that goes.  I should try it so I can tell you if it works or not!  Maybe one of you can!  Assignments for everyone!

I served dinner with some shredded iceberg lettuce, partially smooshed black beans, a squooze of lime over it all and a dollop of sour cream.* 

*Sour cream not included in photographic evidence.

(I stole the chili pepper photo from here: A blog! If this does not agree with you and you are responsible for the photo, please contact me and I will remove it with my apologies.)

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Easy Banana "Ice Cream"

It's not really ice cream because it has no actual cream in it.  I suppose you could call it a frozen treat!

I froze some bananas that were going brown and spotty after peeling them and tossing them into a ziplock bag.
Upon retrieving them from ice-cold doom, I plopped them into my food processor, popped the lid on and turned it on full blast.
I pulsed the mix until it was somewhat chunky and then turned on the processor to a steady go around until it was smooth, creamy and wonderful!

It resembles ice cream and has a similar mouthfeel until it starts to get melty.  Then you have a bowl of really cold banana pudding.  This is not a bad deal!
I put a little honey in to up the sweet.

I'm thinking this would be WONDERFUL with chunks of dark chocolate tossed in at the end and hand mixed in.  Peanuts too!

I realize I should have taken a photo, but we ate it too fast!


3-5 bananas going brown, peeled
a sealable container
a food processor or high powered blender
a spoon
your mouth

optional: nuts, chocolate chunks

Process frozen bananas until blended smooth and creamy
Add any extras

Monday, August 31, 2009

Pretty Straightforward Slapdash Tasty Chili

I did promise a chili recipe a few entries ago.  I got around to it today on the heels of my husband feeling ill and whining a bit.
I told him I'd go to the store and get things for dinner and a few items he requested to help him feel better.

It's a simple recipe.  It's cheap (I think I spent about $8 on supplies and that was mostly the ground beef).  It's easy.  It's tasty.  What more could a person want?
Oh, it's healthy too!

This recipe was taken from and augmented slightly to suit my tastes.


Basic Ingredients:

1 lb of ground beef
1 small onion
2 cloves of garlic (chopped)
1 28 fl oz. can of Kidney beans
1 28 fl oz. can of tomatoes
1-2 tablespoons of chili powder (I used a good 1/4 cup worth. I like chili powder!)

salt and pepper to taste

Optional Ingredients:
chipotle peppers in adobo sauce (I used two of the peppers, see below for more instruction)
1 green bell pepper, chopped
cayenne pepper
bay leaf (it's an aromatic!)
a small can of corn
1 tablespoon of worchestershire sauce
substitute black beans or pinto for the red kidney beans

How to:

Sauté the onions in a little bit of oil or spoonfuls of water/beef stock.  Add garlic and the ground beef and make sure to break it up as you cook it.  Brown the beef.
Add in your chopped green pepper (if any), your tomatoes (I used diced!), and your beans.  If you're planning to toss in any other optional ingredients, now is the time.
Add chili powder and your worchestershire sauce.
Stir, cover and simmer on a low heat for at least 30 minutes or until the green pepper is cooked through.
Mostly, the time spent simmering is to blend the flavours together.
Special note on the adobo and chipotles!  I used only TWO of the peppers to rein in the heat level of this chili.  I also used about two tablespoons of the adobo sauce.

Serve and enjoy!
This should feed 2-3 pigs comfortably and 4-5 regular servings with mebbe some bread and stuff on the side.

*As a small aside, I really did feel a little dirty taking pictures of my chili.  Listen to that shutter click and the the camera whirr...