Sunday, August 13, 2006

New Mexican enchiladas

OK, I'm back from the trip and from some fairly stressful grant-writing at work... hopefully I'll be writing here a bit more again...

In my parents' home state of New Mexico, enchiladas are unique in a couple of ways. Instead of being a tortilla rolled around a filling and covered with sauce and cheese, the tortillas are flat, with the filling in between. The most traditional New Mexican enchiladas are layers of tortillas and cheese, with red chile sauce (made mostly from dried red New Mexican chiles, the mild but flavorful chiles you see in ristras), and with a fried egg on top. (This reminds me a little of the Korean dish bibimbap for some reason!) I wish I knew the origin of these somewhat unusual variations, but Google was, for a change, no help at all.

I have two interesting variations on the basic recipe (whose main appeal is that it can be scaled up, either by making a casserole, or by, well, just cooking it on a really huge griddle). One is my re-creation of a recipe I had at the Double Eagle restaurant in Old Mesilla, NW. It's a vegetarian enchilada, made with three layers of fillings, one black beans, one corn and tomato, and one garlic, squash, and lime. Of course it uses the traditional red chile sauce and has some cheese and a fried egg on top. Here's the recipe...

The other variation is one I created for a Mexican-themed dinner with my cooking club. I adapted bits of several other recipes to make appetizer-sized enchiladas with wild mushrooms, a green tomatillo-based sauce, a red chile sauce, and fried quail eggs for the top. Despite my using the wrong type of Mexican cheese and not making enough green sauce, they were very good (and pleasantly photogenic!). Along with the photo, here's that recipe...



At 11:20 PM, Blogger Tanya Lee said...

Oh wonderful! I'm definitely going to try your recipes! I really miss NM food--not at all the same as Mexican restaurant food. We are growing Rio Grande chiles in our garden (I think that's what they were called)--anyhow, big green ones. I plan to roast, peel and freeze them New Mexico style to last the winter.


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