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May 07, 2013

The Big Enchilada

Beef Enchiladas
The biggest enchilada ever made was in a small Mexico City borough named Iztapalapa. When it was finished it was an astounding 230 feet long and weighed over 3,000 pounds—that, my friends is 1 1/2 tons of enchilada.

I like enchiladas. I have fond memories from when I was growing up and my mom would go out to eat. She inevitably would come home with leftovers—always Mexican food— and my brother and I would share it for breakfast, straight from the ice box. We both still love cold leftover Mexican food. But, I digress; I was talking about big enchiladas.

The Big Enchilada, also known as The Big Cheese, The Big Gun, The Big Fish, The Big Deal, The Big Shot and The Big Wheel, is just that, The Big Guy; Mr. Supremo; The Head Honcho. In Yiddish, The Big Enchilada goes by the moniker, The Knocker. I like that and all of those names fit Mr. B, but he's not a know-it-all and he's certainly not boastful, he's just...well...Mr. B has presence, but more importantly, My Big Enchilada likes big enchiladas and that works out perfectly, because so do I.

Enchiladas are really quick to make and while you can opt for store bought enchilada sauce (there are a few brands out there that I like, particularly Las Palmas™ Picante, but it's super easy to make your own.

Beef Enchiladas

1 pound ground beef, cooked and drained, or 2 cups shredded leftover roast
1 large onion, finely chopped
5 jalapeño peppers, finely chopped
shredded cheese
sliced black olives
chopped green onion tops
handfull of chopped cilantro
corn tortillas
homemade enchiladas sauce

1. To assemble the enchiladas, place 1/2 cup enchilada sauce in shallow pie plate and microwave until warm.
2.Take a stack of 4-6 corn tortillas and warm them in the microwave.
3. Gently dip each tortilla in the warm sauce, turning to coat both sides.
4. Working on a clean cutting board, fill the tortilla with beef, a sprinkling of chopped onions, a pinch of cheese and a pinch on the jalapeño; tightly roll and place in a lightly sprayed (nonstick spray) oblong baking dish.
5. Continue with remaining tortillas, tightly packing them into the pan.
6. Pour the remaining sauce over the enchiladas, top with any remaining chopped onions and cheese; sprinkle with jalapeño and top with black olives.
7. Cover with aluminum foil and bake at 350º for 50-60 minutes, or until the sauce is bubbling and the enchiladas are heated through.
8. During the last 10 minutes, remove aluminum foil and sprinkle with cilantro and chopped green onions.
9. Allow to sit for 10-15 minutes before serving so the enchiladas don't break apart and are easier to remove from the pan.
10. . Serve with sour cream.

Enchilada Sauce

2 tablespoons bacon fat
Wondra™ flour
1/3 cup chipotle chili powder
2 tablespoons cumin
1 teaspoon Mexican oregano
1 10 ounce can of tomato paste
1/2 finely minced yellow onion
2 cups chicken stock/water
salt

1. Melt bacon fat in a cast iron skillet over medium heat.
2. Add the onions and cook until the onions are soft and golden.
3. Sprinkle the Wondra™ over the hot fat and onions and stir; cook for one minute.
4. Add the chili powder, cumin and oregano and cook for one minute.
5. Whisk the broth/water into the pan.
6. Add the tomato paste and cook until thickened, thinning as needed.
7. Taste for salt; add salt.
8. Adjust seasonings.


2 comments :

  1. I completely forgot about Wondra! We are going to Austin at the end of the month (can't remember if I told you or not?!) and I cannot wait to get some really good Mexican food.

    You had me at The Knocker!

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  2. Wondra is awesome stuff; go buy yourself some! Ah, Tex-Mex--love it; this enchilada sauce is actually based on Tex-Mex style with the bacon fat instead of lard or oil. I love Tex-Mex, Cal-Mex and Colorado-Mex; I love Mex!

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