Thursday, March 14, 2013

Open-Face Enchiladas

The other day I was walking home from work when a sudden craving for a good old plate of enchiladas with rice and beans from Matt's Rancho Martinez in Dallas hit me like a ton of bricks. The longing was so intense, it almost made me cry. Lucky for me, we’ve been able to find ingredients here in Stockholm to make our own homemade substitute: corn masa and a tortilla press for making homemade corn tortillas, canned tomatillos (even fresh ones in season), real Mexican salsa, refried black beans, as well as salsa verde, etc. This availability of ingredients reminds me of home and comforts me to no end. And while it isn't quite the same as sitting in the festive atmosphere of Matt's and sipping a frozen margarita while digging chip after chip into bowls of salsa and chili con queso, having a homemade Mexican meal usually abates the craving and makes me feel like I can go on living. Until the next unbearable craving hits, that is. If I'm being honest, and honesty is always the best policy in my book, the craving comes around fairly regularly. Like, every other day or so. I maybe slightly exaggerating but not by much.

So, you may be asking yourself, “What is in that amazing creation in the photo above?” And I would answer, “Oh, just some corn tortillas, with a little cheddar cheese, refried black beans, pickled jalapeños, salsa verde, diced tomatoes, and avocado, that’s all.” Cilantro, diced green chilies, and chopped onion would be delicious additions as well. You can always use your imagination and add to your heart’s desire. Add scrambled eggs and you have the perfect brunch. Heck, you can even add shredded chicken, grilled chicken, or steak if that's your calling. Spanish rice and beans on the side are nice but I have not managed to perfect Spanish rice yet. This time around we did not have sides but ones I've made in the past have included a simple green salad with chopped lettuce and tomatoes, homemade guacamole, or black beans that have been doctored up with a bit of chili powder, ground cumin, and garlic, and a tablespoon or two of salsa. Use your Mexican imagination and go wild. In the summer I like to make a roasted corn and jalapeño salad with black beans, fresh lime, diced tomatoes, and cilantro. So amazing. 

What would you pair these delicious open-faced enchiladas with?

Recipe for Quick Open-Faced Enchiladas

Ingredients for two people (double or triple recipe as needed):

8 Corn tortillas
1-1 1/2 c. Grated cheddar, Monterrey jack, or pepper jack cheese
1 c. Refried black beans
1 c. Salsa verde or tomatillo sauce
Pickled jalapeños to taste
1 Medium diced tomato
1 Avocado
Salsa to taste


Things to do ahead of time: 

Warm the salsa verde or tomatillo sauce and heat your oven to about 200 F (150 C). This will be for keeping the quesadillas warm while you are getting things ready to assemble.  

Begin making your cheese quesadillas. Place approximately 1/4 c. of cheese between 2 corn tortillas until you have 4 quesadillas total. In your cast iron skillet over medium high heat, grill your quesadillas on both sides just until the cheese has melted. Place on a foil covered baking sheet in your oven to keep warm as you continue making the quesadillas. 

Once all quesadillas are done you are ready to assemble. Place two quesadillas on each plate. Dollop 1/4 c. of beans on top of each quesadilla and spread to the edges. Place desired number of pickled jalapeños over the beans. Ladle 1/4 c. salsa verde or tomatillo sauce over the quesadillas, especially around the edges. Top with tomatoes and avocado cubes and add your favorite salsa to taste. 

Enjoy with your favorite person and be happy.

The end. 

One of these would go nicely with any homemade Mexican treat!

PS. I wrote a guest post at Katie's Delicious Ambiguity on a Mexican Skillet Scramble.

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