Sunday, June 09, 2013

A Fiesta of Recipes

Eating: We have been eating this year, I promise.  I just have not been a prolific blogger.  The predictions for 2013 included trying a new recipe each month.  So far, I have averaged a recipe a month.  In May, there were 2 new recipes.

I have pinned many recipes on Pintrest, mostly when I was PWH (pinning while hungry), but have been poor at trying many of the things I have pinned.  A couple weeks ago, I tried one recipe that I had pinned several months ago: Homemade Enchilada Sauce.  This is one of those things that may fall into the category of "why would you even to bother to make that from scratch?" but it was delicious, I know exactly what was in it and it didn't really take all that long.  The recipe was pinned from a blog called "Gimme Some Oven".  Always love a good pun... 

The color and heat of the enchilada sauce is going to depend on the type of chili powder you use.  I would recommend using half the amount of chili powder and adding more to your taste.  You can always add more, but can never take back what you have already added.  Ours was more brown colored, which was fine with me.  We use Penzey's Chili Powder (regular, not hot.  We are Minnesotans.). I love Penzey's and we are lucky to have a store not too far so we can go in and smell the spices before we buy, but you can order them online or from their catalog too.  I didn't mean to do an advertisement for Penzey's here.  I just really like their spices - they are fresh and there is a huge variety.  We actually made a bigger batch of sauce because our enchilada recipe (taken from the can of Old El Paso enchilada sauce.  No comments on using homemade sauce to make a recipe from the side of a can.  I get that it is weird.)

Homemade Enchilada Sauce
2 T. vegetable or canola oil
2 T. flour
4 T. chili powder (more or less to taste, as I noted above)
1/2 t. garlic powder
1/2 t. salt
1/4 t. cumin
1/4 t. oregano
2 C. chicken broth

Heat oil over medium heat in a medium saucepan (no need to consult a medium before doing this...).  Add flour and stir 1 minute (you may recall this is called a "roux").  Stir in the spices.  Gradually stir in broth, whisking continually to remove lumps.  Reduce heat and simmer 10-15 minutes until thick.  Refrigerate up to 2 weeks.  Or use immediately to make your enchiladas.
As a bonus, here is the enchilada recipe we use.

Easy Beef Enchiladas
(from Old El Paso Enchilada Sauce can)
1 lb. ground beef
2 10 oz cans enchilada Sauce (or 20 oz of yummy homemade enchilada sauce)
6 oz (1 1/2 C) shredded cheese (we actually only used 1/2 C of cheese - we find the cheese inside the enchiladas to be more than we need or want)
12 count package of flour tortillas for soft tacos (I think they are the 8" size)

Heat oven to 375.  Brown ground beef until thoroughly cooked; drain.  Stir in 3/4 C enchilada sauce and 1 C cheese (this is the cheese we skip).  Spoon enchilada filling onto tortillas; roll up and place seam-side down in lightly greased 13x9x2" baking dish.  Pour remaining enchilada sauce over top; sprinkle with 1/2 C cheese.  Bake at 375 for 15-20 minutes.
We must be on a Mexican food kick.  The other recipe we tried was potato and chorizo tacos.  This is a recipe I first saw in the Minneapolis Star Tribune about a year ago (or more).  It went into the menu database and about once every 3 months, E would say, "What is this recipe?" and I would explain where I got it and that we had not made it because I couldn't find chorizo.  We would discuss that it sounded really good and that we would look for chorizo.  And then 3 months later, the same conversation would occur. 

So finally, in a part of the grocery store I don't usually look at, I found chorizo!  And now we have taste-tested the recipe and are adding it to the regular rotation.  Easy and tasty.  I am not sure what size tortillas they are recommending but it must be super-small ones because it says the recipe makes 12 tacos.  We used 10" tortillas, and doubled the recipe and had 8 tacos.  Unless you are using the really little tortillas, expect 4 tacos.  Chorizo is a cured sausage.  Ours was not in casings and just looked like seasoned ground pork.  Which I guess is what it is.  We did not add the onion but since we like peppers, we chopped and cooked those up in place of the onion.  We did not have green salsa (aka salsa verde) so used regular red stuff.  E snipped some fresh cilantro from the front step.  We skipped the lime, but only because we didn't have any. 

Potato and Chorizo Taco
(from "Tacos" by Scott Wilson (Sasquatch Books), as printed in the Minneapolis Star Tribune)
1/2 lb. medium russet or white potatoes, quartered (I used Yukon gold)
1 T. olive oil
1/4 medium white onion, cut in 1/4" wedges (optional) - I did not add this
1/4 lb. Mexican chorizo in bite-size pieces, removed from casing
Corn or flour tortillas
Green salsa, chopped onion and cilantro, lime wedges, for toppings

Put potatoes in a medium-size pot and cover them with water.  Bring the water almost to a boil, then lower it to a simmer, cooking potatoes until barely tender, between 10-15 minutes.  Be sure not to overcook them.  Drain potatoes and put them on a plate to cool, then cut them into 1/2" cubes.  Meanwhile, heat a medium-size pan over medium fire and add the olive oil.  Tilt the pan to coat the bottom and add the onion, cooking until translucent, about 5-7 minutes.
Add the chorizo and saute, stirring occasionally, for 7-10 minutes more, until cooked through.  Add the potatoes and stir in gently.  Cook until the potatoes are warmed through, about 5 more minutes.
Serve on warm tortillas, topped with salsa, chopped onion and cilantro, with lime wedges on the side.

There you have it.  2 new-to-me recipes, both well-received in our house.

Bon appetit (or however you say "good eating" in Spanish)!

Until we eat again,

P.S., Last summer we had began a tradition of Thursday Pizzas and tried out a number of different flavors/toppings.  We are working on a chorizo and potato pizza for this year.  If you are curious about past pizza posts and recipes, just type "pizza" into the search at the upper left-hand corner and all the blog posts in which I mention pizza will come up.  There are a quite a few...  It is the perfect food, in my opinion.

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