So first meal in this challenge! Hooray! This month, I'm working out of The Vegetarian Mother's Cookbook
My reasons for picking this book are that I'm trying to find some good, nutrient dense recipes to add to our dinner rotation, plus, I have some friends who are pregnant that I'll be sending some meals to and while I'd be inclined to send some soups over to their house, I know from experience that trying to eat soup when you have a newborn nursing can be a bit tricky (Dria ended up with a lot of soup on her head). Plus, with Dria still nursing, I do try to at least make an attempt to eat healthy. Plus, this features easy kid friendly recipes and we're all about that around here.
One of our favorite dinners is enchiladas. Ry usually makes them and they are supremely delicious. The trouble is that he usually uses a lot of Quorn ground in them and makes them HUGE. Plus a ton of cheese and sour cream. Quorn ground is insanely good stuff and useful when you live in a house with a vegetarian and a soy intolerant guy, but it's expensive as all get out, not to mention the sodium content and the mystery ingredients (I've heard some doctors claim that it can't really be food. And while I'd argue that since it is a fungus, it is food, I can see the point. It's an engineered food; surely we can find a good alternative and stay within the confines of a vegetarian diet)
So this is my quest to find a tasty enchilada recipe that is 1.) Vegetarian 2.) Soy free 3.) Cheaper than Quorn ground 3.) Just as tasty and satisfying 4.)Nutrient dense and fairly healthy.
For the restart of the cooks challenge, I came across black bean and sweet potato enchiladas. They are tasty! They are cheaper than quorn ground! They're lighter in fat! It's a win!
Admittedly, there's a few things that we will change the next time we make these, I'll add those comments after the recipe:
2 tsp oil
1 small onion, diced
2 sweet potatoes, diced (about 2.5 cups)
2 cups cooked black beans
2 cups chopped greens (kale, spinach, etc...)
salt, black pepper to taste
2 cups enchilada sauce (see below for recipe)
8 large whole grain tortillas or 10 to 12 corn tortillas
8 ounces sour cream, yogurt cheese or creme fraiche (or vegan equivalent)
Preheat oven to 375. Heat oil in a large skillet. Add onion and saute 5 to 10 minutes or until soft. Add sweet potatoes. Cover and cook about 10 minutes or until tender. Stir in beans and greens. Cover and heat about 5 minutes until greens are wilted. Add a little water if necessary. Season w/ salt and pepper to taste.
Cover botton of 9x13 baking dish with about 1/3 cup of enchilada sauce. Place tortilla on flat surface. Scoop a line of filling across the width of the tortilla. Spoon sour cream across filling. Roll enchilada and place in pan, seam side down. Repeat until filling is all gone. Cover enchiladas with remaining sauce. Cover pan and bake 20 minutes.
Recipe for Enchilada Sauce
Not authentic, but still tasty.
1 small onion, minced
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 tsp chili powder
1 tsp ground cumin
2 tsp dried oregano
2 cloves garlic, minced
3 cups tomato puree
1/2 cup water
1/2 tsp salt
Heat oil in a medium pan over medium low heat. Add onion and saute 5 to 7 minutes or until onion is golden brown. Stir in chili powder, cumin, oregano and garlic. Saute 1 minute. Add remaining ingredients. Bring to a boil and simmer 15 minutes.
The filling for the enchiladas was a little bland. Next time, I'd be inclined to add in some extra chipotle powder. Also, I used spinach because Ry gets suspicious of other greens, but I really wanted kale. And I can see mustard greens being REALLY good too.
For the enchilada sauce
We've been out of cumin for a crazy long time and I keep forgetting to get more. And the oregano ended up in Dria's diaper last week (I don't know why either, so don't ask), which I had forgotten about until I started looking for it and we ran out of garlic last week, which sucks. So I ended up using our penzey's adobo seasoning, which includes garlic powder, cumin and a few other things.
Also, I misread the recipe and thought we needed tomato paste, not puree. We have paste in droves, but no puree at the moment. So, I used a can of paste and 2.5 cups water instead. It still turned out tasty.
The verdict: Tasty and will make again. Although, I think I'd make up the filling ahead of time on a weekend when I have a bit of time. The chopping took a while and we ended up eating around 7:30pm. On the week days, I try get dinner on the table by 6 in order for the evening to run smoothly. And we're usually home a little after 5.