Sunday, April 29, 2012

Perfect Vegetarian Enchiladas

Back in the early 1980s, my brother-in-law married a lovely lady from Mexico.  She is a beautiful, real deal Aztec descent Mexican wonder who can make Mexican food like no other.  Now keep in mind that back in the day, the only "real" Mexican food those of us living in good ole' Midwest USA had available to us was Taco Bell and their unknown at that time "pink slime".   So when dear sister-in-law started making real Mexican food, all of us realized exactly what we had been missing thinking "Yo Quiero Taco Bell" was the real deal.  So began my quest for "real" Mexican food.  Hence, Perfect Vegetarian Enchiladas.  Quite frankly, my family will attest that these are indeed perfect enchiladas.

Perfect Vegetarian Enchiladas

The Sauce
1/4 jalapeno, diced (amount of seeds included will determine the "heat" of the enchilada sauce)
1/4 small onion, diced
1 clove of garlic, minced
2 Tablespoons canola oil
2 Tablespoons white flour
2 cans (10 oz each) red enchilada sauce, mild
10 oz vegetable broth

The Stuffing
1 can (16 oz) refried beans
1 can (4.5 oz) green chilies, chopped
2 Tablespoons sour cream
1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese
4 large green onions, sliced

Tortilla Shells
12-14 tortilla shells
canola oil for frying
1 small can sliced black olives
1 cup sliced green olives
3 large green onions, sliced


The Sauce
1.  In 2 tablespoons canola oil saute white onion, jalapeno, and garlic til soft and aromatic.
2.  Add 2 tablespoons flour and stir to mix.
3,  Add 2 cans red enchilada sauce and 10 oz of vegetable broth.
4.  Bring to a gentle boil.  Reduce heat and gently simmer while putting together the stuffing and prepping the tortilla shells.

The Stuffing
1.  In a medium size bowl combine refried beans, green chilies, sour cream, 1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese, and 4 sliced green onions.

Tortilla Shells
1.  Heat canola oil for frying over medium heat..
2.  Lightly fry each tortilla shell in the oil, one at a time, for approximately 20-30 seconds.  Do not fry the shells until they are crisp.  The shells need to be warm and just soft.  Heat all of the tortilla shells in this manner.  Drain on paper towels.
Be prepared for a very messy kitchen after the assembling.  This is not a recipe for the faint of heart!

1.  Lightly spray a 9x13 inch pan with Pam.
2. Work with one tortilla at a time.  Dip the tortilla in the warm enchilada sauce
3. Place the dipped  tortilla on a cutting board or cookie sheet.  Layer onto the tortilla shell:  1 tablespoon bean stuffing, a couple of sliced black olives, a couple of sliced green onions, a sprinkling of shredded cheese.
4.  Roll up the tortilla to keep the bean stuffing and accoutrements inside.  Gently, being careful not to loose any of the delicious bean filling out of each end, lay the prepared enchilada in the prepared pan, side by side.
5.  Repeat steps 2-4 for each prepared tortilla shell.
6.  Cover the top of each enchilada with the remaining enchilada sauce, green olives, 3 sliced green onions, and shredded cheese.
7.  Bake in a 350 degree Fahrenheit oven for 20 minutes.

Serve with salsa, guacamole, and homemade tortilla chips.  Enjoy!

Serves:  4-6
Cost per Serving: $2.00

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