In our family we love what we think is Mexican food. I have been to Mexico, well Cancun, and can’t say that I ate authentically when we were there. In fact, I’m pretty sure our idea of Mexican food is very Canadianized. Regardless, we love it. “Tacos” are a go-to meal in this house because we can prepare them and be eating within 15 minutes. On dance class night, this is vital.
When we decided to become vegetarian a lot of the suggested recipes we found were with Mexican flavours. We seem to favour only one. But, tacos only go so far and sometimes you can have too much of a good thing. I wanted to try something similar but different, and I had never had enchiladas. I had some tomatillo sauce in the fridge that was in there for far too long, and I had just picked up a LOT of cheese because there was a big sale, so it looked like I was set.
Let me preface this recipe by saying that I don’t know if this is considered enchiladas or if this is a Mexican-flavoured lasagna made with tortillas; either way, it was delicious. I accompanied the “enchiladas” with an organic black bean salad (my personal favourite) that had cucumber, tomato, avocado, green onions, cilantro, and a simple dressing of olive oil and lime juice. I used the juice of a whole lime and it was delicious. My husband who normally cringes when I make this salad (I don’t know why), ate what he took, and then finished what was left.
Enchiladas with Zucchini, Onions and Red Peppers
- 9 small corn or whole wheat tortillas
- olive oil
- 1 onion, sliced
- 1 zucchini, quartered then sliced
- 1 red pepper, diced
- freshly ground black pepper
- 1 jar tomatillo sauce (sometimes called green salsa)*
- 1 cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese
- 1 cup shredded white old cheddar cheese
- 1/4 cup sour cream
- 1/4 cup feta cheese, crumbled
- Take the tortillas and brush them with olive oil. Bake in a 400 F oven for 3-5 minutes until they are crispy. Set aside. Reduce oven temperature to 350 F.
- In a large frying pan, sauté the onion until it is starting to get some colour, then add the zucchini and red pepper and cook until they too have some colour. If you want to add pepper, do so now. Set aside.
- In a circular ceramic dish (like a Pyrex or Corning Ware) that is similar in size to your tortillas but deep (about 5″ or about 12 cm) cover the bottom with a thin layer of tomatillo sauce.* Place three of the tortillas down, then cover with a third of the cheese, and half of the vegetables. Then, cover with tomatillo sauce. Then repeat: 3 tortillas, 1/3 of the cheese, the remaining vegetables and tomatillo sauce. Cover again with the tortillas, tomatillo sauce, the sour cream, the remaining shredded cheese and the feta.
- Place the dish in the oven for 20-25 minutes until the cheeses are all melted. If you find your top is getting too much colour, cover it and remove the top 5 minutes before finishing.
- Cut the enchiladas into cake-like slices and serve with salsa and more sour cream.
*If you think that those eating your dish won’t like the tomatillo sauce, you can substitute it with regular salsa. Two of my three layers of sauce were tomatillo and one was regular salsa. The salsa and tomatillo sauce together with the other ingredients add a lot of flavour for a fairly simple dish.
You could add cooked chicken to this dish if you had some leftover in your fridge from a Sunday night roasted chicken. As it is, the vegetarian “enchiladas” a.k.a. Mexican lasagna, are delicious.