Enchilada Casserole

I recently took the “Sweet Potato & Black Bean Enchiladas with Avocado-Cilantro Cream Sauce” from the Oh She Glows cookbook and played with them a bit, ending up with an enchilada casserole that pleased this family tremendously.  The recipe is on page 147 of this excellent book (which is absolutely worth adding to your cookbook collection if you haven’t already), and the author also published it on her website (link provided below).  While the recipe is excellent exactly as is, I made a few tweaks to it (partly due to laziness – I didn’t feel like individually wrapping enchiladas that day), which are tasty, too.

Basically, I doubled the recipe, and rather than using black beans, I used Butler Soy Curls instead.  Just reconstitute the Curls in water (or you could use broth for more flavor), and then either broil them or sizzle them in a frying pan or wok for a bit.  What you’re trying to do is remove some of the excess moisture and crisp up the edges so the filling isn’t too squishy when it comes together.

Then, just proceed with the recipe as written, except you’ll layer a casserole dish as follows:  enchilada sauce; layer of tortillas; layer of filling; layer of sauce; repeat until it’s how you want it, ending with sauce on top.  A note on the sauces:  absolutely, definitely make the “5-Minute Enchilada Sauce” recipe in the book.  It is super easy and the rewards are HUGE.  It’s absolutely delicious and elevates this dish beyond what any store-bought sauce could do.  I used to use canned enchilada sauce.  No more.  This sauce recipe is not in the link below (seems she developed it later), and it isn’t published on the Oh She Glows site.  However, if you search for it, you’ll find some other bloggers who have posted it.  As I don’t know whether they did so with permission or not, I’m not posting it here, but you can get your hands on it.  Better yet, buy the book!

Another note on sauces:  don’t skip the Avocado-Cilantro Cream Sauce!!!  It’s a crucial component of the dish, the perfect bright green counterpoint to the rich enchiladas.  Yum!

Here’s what your casserole will look like (I kept the Avocado-Cilantro Cream Sauce on the side, so it’s not in this shot):

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And here’s a link to the enchilada recipe:

http://ohsheglows.com/2011/05/04/vegan-enchiladas-with-cilantro-avocado-cream-sauce-2/

There are some differences between the online recipe and the one in the book (the sauce, the amount of sweet potatoes), but it should be a good starting point.

Enjoy!  xo

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Spaghetti with Meyer Lemon, Arugula, and Pistachios

This is the perfect dinner to usher in spring, with its fresh, bright flavors and colors.  I originally clipped this recipe from Martha Stewart Living magazine in May 2003, and it stands the test of time quite nicely.  Here’s what you’ll need:

1/2 cup shelled roasted, unsalted pistachios

1 small shallot, cut into eighths

1 Meyer lemon, cut into eighths and seeded (leave the peel on – it’s quite mild)

3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

1/2 pound spaghetti

2 cups packed baby arugula

Salt and pepper

Bring a large pot of water to a boil.  Meanwhile, pulse the pistachios and shallot in a food processor until finely chopped.  Transfer to a large bowl.  Without cleaning the processor bowl, finely chop the lemon.  Add to the pistachios and shallot.  Stir to combine.  It will make a kind of paste.  Stir in the olive oil and add the arugula.  Things will be looking like this:

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Add pasta to the boiling water; cook until al dente, according to package instructions.  Drain, reserving 1/2 cup cooking water.  Toss pasta and reserved cooking water with pistachio mixture and arugula until coated.  Add salt and pepper to taste (about 1/2 teaspoon of salt and a few grinds of pepper).  Divide among 4 serving plates.

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Enjoy!  xo

Quite Possibly the Best Smoothie Ever

I should probably start this post by stating that I adore mint chocolate chip ice cream (vegan, of course).  If I had to choose only one ice cream flavor to eat for the rest of my life, it would be mint chocolate chip.  Thankfully, I do not need to make this choice, but you get the idea.  If you share my love of all things minty and chocolatey (vegan Thin Mints!!!), read on…

The “Mighty Mint Chip” smoothie is the creation of the brilliant smoothie goddess, Kathy Patalsky, and hails from her book, 365 Vegan Smoothies.  I have been working my way through this terrific book, enjoying her wonderful flavor combinations.  While I have liked every single one I’ve made so far, the Mighty Mint Chip smoothie blew me away yesterday.  Pure heaven.  It tastes just like mint chocolate chip ice cream!!!

Kathy has a great website, which is loaded with tons of yummy recipes.  You should check it out!

http://kblog.lunchboxbunch.com/p/kathys-book.html

Unfortunately, she hasn’t posted this particular smoothie recipe, so what I highly recommend is getting your hands on her book and promptly turning to page 146!  Rest assured that every other page contains serious yumminess, too.  In the meantime, a tease of the Mighty Mint Chip’s greatness…

Here we’ve got frozen bananas, raw cacao nibs, fresh mint, plain soy yogurt, unsweetened soy milk and a splash of agave, just waiting to be blended:

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And this is what your glass of heaven will look like:

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Swoon, swoon, swoon.  Enjoy!  xo