In a frenzy of guilt over the small amount of vegetables we’ve been eating, I went almost vegetarian tonight. Not stuffed with grains and cheese vegetarian… I mean loads of vegetables vegetarian. Also… clean out the frig-in-preparation-of-vacation vegetarian. This was literally leave no leaf unturned!
I started with a combination of food from my freezer, produce drawer, and shopping trip:
After 20 minutes of mise en place:
We have chopped onions, garlic, mushrooms, summer squash (green and yellow), and spinach. Also cilantro. I’m making enchiladas.
The skillet in back contains the sauteed vegetables, along with some kidney beans that were in my freezer, and seasoned with salt, pepper, cumin, and oregano. In front are shredded aged cheddar cheese, corn tortillas (no, I didn’t make them myself – wish I could do that). I did, however make enchilada sauce, something that is so simple to do, it’s downright strange the stuff even comes in cans.
This sauce consists of about two cups of chicken broth (from my freezer – the end product of a roasted chicken from a couple months ago), and 4 or 5 large, dried chili peppers. It’s because of the chicken broth that I don’t call these vegetarian enchiladas. You could, of course, simply use vegetable broth if that’s what you want. I simmered the peppers in the broth (with a bit of extra water to make sure they were well covered) for ten minutes. After it cooled a bit, I removed the stems and seeds, then poured everything else into my blender. A few seconds of blender activity produced a rich, smooth enchilada sauce. It needed a bit of salt, but that was all.
I assembled everything into a 9×13 baking pan. This is where I get lazy. I don’t have the patience or dexterity to roll a filling in corn tortillas. It never works right. So I layer my enchiladas: a layer of tortillas, then the filling, then more tortillas. I pour the sauce over all of it, cover it with foil, and bake for 30 minutes at 350 degrees. After 30 minutes, I remove the foil, add cheese on top and bake for another ten minutes. This batch was a bit runny, I think because of the sauteed vegetables. So I left the foil off for the final baking and let it cook for 15 minutes. It could have used more time, but we needed to eat.
Pretty, isn’t? Tasted pretty good, too. AND, we have leftovers!