Roasted Tomatillo Salsa and Tacos with a Cuban Flair

Our tomatillos are coming along like crazy so it is time to pick them and make delicious food.  There isn’t any way to use them all at once so I’ll be freezing a bunch this week to keep up with it all.  We had roast pork left over as well as the marinade from the Cuban sandwiches I made so I thought with these ingredients and a tomatillo salsa we’d have a delicious dinner.

I enjoyed puttering about the kitchen making the various components to this dish.  First on the list were the easy tortillas.  Though it is hot work in the summer!  I found this tomatillo salsa recipe that was easy to make and needed some hot peppers.  Which are ready to pick in our garden!

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Remove the husks of about a pound of tomatillos, rinse and slice them in half.  Place them face down on a baking sheet.  Add two jalapenos and two cloves of garlic with the skins still on.

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Broil until the three ingredients are charred.  Keep an eye on them while broiling as you don’t them to be charcoal!

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The original recipe calls for using a mortar and pestle.  One I don’t have one and two I’d rather have this quick and easy.  I do have, however, a blender!  Top the peppers, skin the garlic, and remove the toughest char on the tomatillos.  Add this to the blender.  Slice about 1/4 of a small onion and two tablespoons of fresh cilantro.

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Add the juice of half a lime.

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Season with salt then pulse in the blender.

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The hard part is over!  Not that it’s been that hard up to now.  🙂  For the tacos prep the veg you want in the dish.  In addition to the mushrooms, onions, and sweet pepper I picked a Ring O’ Fire pepper and a poblano pepper.

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I sliced up the remaining pork and sauteed it with the onion in a little bit of olive oil.

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Add in the peppers and mushrooms and saute for a couple of minutes.  Then add about 3/4 cup of the marinade and simmer until the sauce reduces by more than half.  Spoon some down the middle of the tortilla.

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Sprinkle shredded cheese over the filling and spoon the tomatillo salsa over the cheese.

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Add the sour cream and enjoy!

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The tomatillos worked really well with the citrus of the marinade.  A bit messy to eat though!

 

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Beyond Easy Tortillas…

Quite a while ago now I pinned some tortilla recipes swearing I would try them but never got round to it.  The whole time flying by would be the excuse but not a very good one.  I mean I’ve posted some complicated recipes so I can’t say I never had the time to try them out.  For my birthday I asked for a tortilla press because I hadn’t read the flour tortilla recipes all the way through.

Turns out the press is for corn tortillas and you roll out the flour ones.  Doh!  So I’ve added corn tortillas to my list of things to try.  I did try the press on this recipe and yes, like they said, it won’t work.

However, that being said, flour tortillas are so easy to make it’s ridiculous.  It only has five ingredients!  The recipe I followed was this one but there are tons out there that are very similar.

In a mixing bowl add 3 cups flour, 1 cup lukewarm water, 1 tsp salt, 1 tsp baking powder, and a third of a cup of vegetable oil.

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Using the dough hook mix the ingredients on low speed for a couple of minutes, scraping the sides as you go.  Once the dough comes together dump out on the counter that is lightly floured.  Knead for a couple of minutes.

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Divide the dough into 16 somewhat equal balls.  Cover and let rest for about 15 minutes.

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Heat a skillet that will take tortillas 6-7″ in diameter.  You want this hot but not so hot it will burn the tortillas.  A golden brown is what you are going for.  Roll out the first ball so it’s 6-7″ or so.  You’ll want to keep the surfaces floured as well as the rolling pin.  Also, don’t stack the dough.  It will stick and be on the soggy side.

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The first one was as close to a circle as I got.  🙂  Brought to mind those who post comparisons of the pinterest pictures vs reality.  So don’t stress if these aren’t shaped perfectly.  They will still work and taste good.  Place the first one into the skillet.  While it is cooking roll out the next one.  I got a sort of assembly line going.  This process does go quickly as you only need to cook for a minute or so on the first side and just over half that on the second.

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They do puff up a bit and get all bubbly.  When you flip them over press down to deflate the bubbles a bit.  Don’t cook them too “firm” as you want them to fold easily when you eat them.

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So of course I did tacos.  I did our normal mixture with a bit of beef and veg.  I decided to do a different topping to our usual sour cream.

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Mash up an avocado, add about 1/3 cup of homemade salsa, a few squirts of lime juice, a bit of adobe seasoning, and some cilantro.

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I really liked this as an alternative to sour cream.  Just something different.  Of course melted cheese goes well with this.  🙂

This recipe makes 16 tortillas. The ones you don’t use freeze well until needed.

So one more week of tax season and I can get back to reading everyone’s posts and having the usual chats.  I hoped it would be different this season in keeping up with everything but it just proved to hard with everything going on.  But next week I can’t wait to start the regular reading!

 

Bitter Cold So It’s Enchilada Time…

I hope everyone had a wonderful New Year’s.  We had our usual get together with our friends.  At our get together we do a potluck.  There were 8 adults and 7 kids but we always end up making enough for double that amount!  Keeps us going for our Texas Hold ‘Em, dancing, and general goofiness.  It’s always a good time.  It has been the high point of my week as I’ve struggled with a bad cold and winter is being harsh.  The past 24 hours brought us several inches of snow and tonight we are looking at a range of -15F/-26C and -22F/-30C.  At that point though, cold is cold!  The kids are enjoying 2 snow days with lots of PJ time and playing out in the snow until they can’t take the cold anymore.  Thank goodness for hot chocolate.  That will revive any child.  🙂

Because of my cold I’ve been trying to get as much spicy things into me as I can.  Though not always with success.  I tried making our spicy stir fry, which is normally a success, but not that night.  The jalapenos were mild and I screwed up the rice noodles.  So last night I wanted to redeem myself with something that actually had a bit of heat!  My kids wanted Mexican for dinner so I decided to make homemade enchiladas and sauce.

This is a very versatile dish as you make it your own.  Particularly in terms of how much heat you want in your dish.  So if you want to knock your socks off you can!

Pre heat the oven for 375F/190C.  Make the enchilada sauce first so it can simmer to give it time for the flavours to develop.

Mince 2-3 cloves of garlic and about 1/2 a cup of onion and saute in olive oil.

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Once they’ve softened a bit add a 14oz can of tomato sauce, 3/4 cups of water, 1/3 cup of salsa, dried oregano, dried basil, chili powder, ground cumin, lime juice, red pepper flakes, adobe seasoning, and salt and pepper.  I’m not giving measurements for the seasoning as you can tailor it to your tastes.  The main bit is not to have an overpowering taste of tomato.  You want all the flavours to come through.  Let this simmer while you prep the enchiladas.

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I found chicken thighs to use for this dish as they are cheaper and have a lot of flavour.  I cut them into strips and started to brown them in olive oil.

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Once they are about halfway cooked add a few cloves of chopped garlic and about half a large onion that has been sliced.  Then add chopped peppers and a jalapeno.  Go ahead and add mushrooms if you wish.  I left them out of this dish for my son.  That made him very happy.  🙂

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Add a bit of lime juice along with chili powder and cumin as well as about 1/3 cup – 1/2 cup of salsa.  I wanted to try a creamy enchilada so I added about 4oz of low fat cream cheese.

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Spoon the mixture into the middle of the tortillas.

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Roll and place in the seam down in the baking dish.

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Pour the enchilada sauce over the enchiladas and cover with shredded cheese.

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Bake until the cheese melts and starts to brown a bit.

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It is ready to serve immediately.  For the table put out sour cream, salsa, and jalapeno to compliment the dish.

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The kids loved it and I liked how the creaminess balanced with the heat.  And the jalapenos brought some heat this time round!  Just what I needed.  🙂

 

Quesadillas

Sometimes we don’t feel like cooking.  Gasp!  I know, hard to imagine.  Sometimes we just want the food fairy to show up for us.  She doesn’t but it’s good there are a few meals that are super easy and delicious to make.  Quesadillas are one of them.

I dice up some onions, peppers, and mushrooms and saute in some olive oil.

I add a bit of lime juice, chilli pepper, cumin, and adobe seasoning.  I then toss in some frozen corn.  I cook it until corn is cooked.

I take a tortilla and top with the veg mixture.  I liberally apply cheese (world would not be a good place without cheese!) and add another tortilla on top.  I place in the toaster oven and toast until the cheese is melted.

I use a pizza cutter to slice and then it is ready to serve.  Add sour cream and salsa and you have a filling, quick meal that is really tasty.  This only took about 20 minutes to make.