ADVENTURES IN DOMESTICITY: Enchiladas Verde Edition

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It’s been a second since I last posted a recipe from Rick Bayless’s Mexican Everyday, but that doesn’t mean I haven’t been cooking from the book. In fact, I have been doing a lot of cooking over the past month or so, but I’ve simply been too lazy to post it here on the blog. Well, enough is enough! I’m going to get back in the Adventures in Domesticity zone and try to work through this crazy backlog of photos I’ve taken. Seriously, it’s stressing me out. I need to get this stuff up on the blog.

Anyhoo, first off the waiting list is Enchiladas Verde (or as Rick officially calls them, Tomatillo-Sauced Enchiladas with Spinach and Mushrooms. It’s kind of a classic, and if there’s anything I’m great at doing, it’s screwing up a classic. Check out my results after the jump…

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The enchiladas call for a cup of cooked, shredded chicken, and conveniently, I have a few pieces that have been banished to a multi-year sentence in the back of my freezer. Today is their lucky day.

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Garlic. Jalapeño. The usual suspects.

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Gasp! It appears as though our jalapeño has been savaged by a mad man!

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The violence continues as the jalapeno and garlic meet an even more horrific end in the food processor. They’ll soon be joined by others.

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Macro shot!

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A gaggle of tomatillos arrive on the scene.

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The tomatillos are quartered. Some cilantro suffers a similar indignity by the knife.

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The tomatillos and cilantro join the garlic and jalapeño in the food processor. Wheeeeee!!!

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A chicken dilemma. Turns out one of my chicken pieces is cooked; the other is raw. GAH. Actually, it’s not really a dilemma. And it becomes less of one when I discover my cooked chicken is actually rather UNDERCOOKED. To the toaster oven!

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Meanwhile, the tomatillo puree goes right into a saucepan with some hot oil. It will remain there for the next seven to ten minutes.

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Stirring. Motion blur. Excitement.

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Reducing, etc.

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Meanwhile, here’s some homemade chicken stock on deck. Although, I’m sure store-bought is JUST FINE (high five, Ina Garten).

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The chicken stock goes into the pan. Now I have to wait ten more minutes. GREAT.

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And now time for something completely different: mushrooms!

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Oh wait: chicken update. It’s come out of the toaster oven looking absolutely perfect. Crispy and sizzling. I’m enthused.

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Meanwhile, some spinach sits nearby idly in my salad spinner thing.

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I slice up the ‘shrooms and some red onions too. It’s getting intense.

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I shred some of the chicken. The other piece, despite its alluring appearance, is actually a bit undercooked. I decide to toss it in the microwave and finish it off in there…

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Back to the mushrooms. I sautee them up in my frying pan. Good times.

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Stop — onion time.

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So… uh… remember that piece of chicken in the microwave? I may have accidentally nuked it to death. On the plus side, I had some really awesome cracklings to gnaw on!

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Future enchilada innards looking like a purdy little salad in a frying pan.

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Triumph of the wilt.

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So… this is done.

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The directions have me heat up the oven and stick these tortillas in for like three minutes. Kind of excessive. Next time, I’ll use the microwave (and unlike with the chicken, I will not destroy my bounty).

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Hey, remember that tomatillo sauce? Well, the time has come to add some Mexican cream or sour cream or crème fraiche or heavy cream. I have none of those. But I do have this yogurt! It will have to do.

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The yogurt does not mix in gracefully, leaving behind specks of whiteness. The sauce tastes delicious though; so I’m not too concerned.

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Time to [finally] make the enchiladas. I dip a tortilla into the sauce and then plop it down on the plate.

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In goes the filling.

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Roll ‘er up.

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Take a moment to admire my dirty work station.

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BOOM. Enchilads! Topped with the sauce, red onions, cilantro, and feta cheese.

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Yummbers.

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Macro shot again!

The verdict?

SO good. As you could see, this recipe was a bit more involved than most of the other Mexican Everyday recipes, but none of it was difficult. In fact, I probably could have taken less time had I simply been more efficient in the kitchen. But that will never happen. Nonetheless, the enchiladas tasted great — the earthiness of the mushrooms played very nicely off the spinach and chicken, not to mention the tomatillo sauce. For those looking for shortcuts, Bayless does suggest simply buying a tomatillo salsa pre-made, but that’s no fun (and not nearly as good). Sure it may take a bit longer to make the tomatillo sauce from scratch, but it’s worth it. This is a dish that extends over many meals, and even after you’ve eaten your way through your stores of mushroom filling, you’ll still have plenty of tomatillo sauce left over that can be easily repurposed elsewhere (I used it to make chilaquiles one morning. Perfect.)

Check out the full recipe here.

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