cheese or veggie enchiladas

i have not been posting as much as i have been wanting to lately.  it seems like all of the food that i have been making as of late has been really, really ugly.  These enchiladas are no exception.  here in san francisco, there are a lot of burrito joints.  lots of really good burrito places are within a 5 minute walk from my house.  however, i have been missing those cheese enchiladas from tex- mex places in houston, especially in this colder weather.  with no tex- mex in california, i would just have to make them myself.  and this being california, i would have to make the cheese enchiladas just a bit healthier.  instead of just mountains of cheese, i sauteed some leftover veggies (onion, kale, corn, and black beans) and used them filled the corn tortillas along with some cheddar/jack cheese.  the most important part (to me anyways) is the chili gravy.  i based mine off of the chili gravy from homesick texan but added about a half can of tomatoes that were sitting in the fridge.  if you are a homesick texan or just pining for some tex- mex, make yourself some enchiladas tonight.

cheese or vegetable enchiladas

adapted from homesick texan

chili gravy

this is key for that sort of tex- mex flavor.  i used some homemade chili powder with dried new mexican chilis, ancho chilis, cumin, smoked paprika, and oregano, but you can use a store bought blend.  traditionally lard is used as the fat, but since i am vegetarian, i used vegetable oil.

1/4 cup vegetable oil

1/4 cup flour

1/2 tsp black pepper

1 tsp salt

1 clove garlic smashed

2 tsp ground cumin

1/2 tsp dried oregano (Mexican oregano is preferred if it’s available)

3 tbsp chili powder

2 cups vegetable broth or water

about 1/2 can diced tomatoes, pureed (this is optional and perhaps even sacrilegious for chili gravy, but seeing that i am filling the enchiladas with vegetables, i guess i can’t really talk about authenticity)

heat the oil in a skillet and whisk in the flour to make a roux over medium to medium high heat.  cook the roux until light brown add the pepper, salt, garlic, cumin, oregano, and chili powder and cook until you can really smell the spices, taking care that you don’t let the garlic burn and constantly stirring.  added the vegetable broth and tomatoes and stir until the sauce thickens.  let the chili gravy simmer over low heat for about 15- 20 minutes.  taste and sdjust the seasoning and add more liquid if needed.

enchilada assembly

you can ignore the vegetable part and just use cheese if that is what you want.

8 corn tortillas

your choice of sauteed vegetables or black beans

shredded cheddar cheese or monterey jack cheese

1 recipe of chili gravy

preheat oven to 400 degrees.

heat the tortillas in a lightly oiled skillet or (if you have a gas stove) directly over the burner until they are all softened.  pour about 1/2 cup of the chili gravy into the bottom of you baking dish.  stuff a small amount of vegetables and cheese or a large amount of cheese in each tortilla and roll up.  place this seam side down into the pan.  repeat until finished.  pour the rest of the chili gravy over the enchiladas and sprinkle with cheese.  bake until everything is hot and bubbly and the cheese is melted.


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