Gourmet Veggie Mama

The family that cooks together…

“We need a bigger kitchen.”

Those words actually came out of the hubby’s mouth, albeit in a joking manner, while we were making enchiladas last weekend. Our kitchen’s size wasn’t really the problem. The problem is that, while we used to cook together on a fairly regular basis, that just hasn’t been the case lately.

Since I transitioned out of working and into the role of primary chef (among other things), I cook most of the meals, except on the nights we grill, or nights when I have something planned out of the house. The hubby is a good sport in his role as primary dish-doer. However, we both do enjoy cooking (sometimes), and when you’re making an elaborate meal, things always go faster with two in the kitchen. Well, once you get that delicate dance down to an art, anyway.

We found a nice balance by dividing up the duties (I made enchilada sauce while he made the filling and rolled the enchiladas) and trying to stay out of each other’s way as much as possible, but there is still work to be done. I, for one, will readily acknowledge that I need to reign in my control freak tendencies.

So, if you cook with your partner, what are your tips for keeping the harmony in the kitchen? How do you avoid bossing each other around or stepping on each other’s toes (literally and figuratively)?

Just to show I’m a good sport here, I’m including a recipe for the enchiladas we made. They were delicious!

Yes, please.

Cook ’em with someone you love.

Chard and Mushroom Enchiladas with Hatch Green Chile Sauce

For enchiladas:
2 Tbsp canola oil, plus more for softening tortillas
2 cloves garlic, minced or pressed
1 onion, chopped
4 cups chard or other tender greens, coarse stems removed and coarsely chopped
8 oz cremini mushrooms, sliced
1 Tbsp butter
1 Tbsp flour
1/2 cup milk
1/2 cup cheddar cheese, grated, plus more for topping
6-8 corn tortillas

For sauce:
12 Hatch green chiles, roasted, peeled, stemmed and seeded
1 onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced or pressed
2 Tbs canola oil

First, make the sauce. Place the chiles in a pan and cover with water. Simmer for about 30 minutes, then cool slightly. Blend the mixture in a blender or food processor until smooth. Meanwhile, heat the oil in a pan and sauté the onion and garlic. Add the chile puree and salt to taste.

Preheat the oven to 375°. Heat 2 Tbsp canola oil in a large skillet and sauté the garlic and onion until soft and golden. Add the mushrooms and the chard by batches and stir until cooked down.

In a small saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat, and stir in the flour. Cook for a couple of minutes, or until golden, and then gradually add the milk, stirring to incorporate. Simmer over medium heat until slightly thickened. Turn off the heat and stir in the cheese. Stir the cheese mixture into the cooked greens and mushrooms.

Fill the bottom of a small skillet with a generous amount of canola oil (1/4-1/2 inch deep) and heat over medium-high heat. Once the oil is hot and shimmering, carefully add the first tortilla with tongs. Fry briefly, just to soften, and then remove to a plate covered with paper towels to drain. When cool enough to handle (but still warm), fill the center of the tortilla with the greens mixture, roll, and place in a lightly oiled enchilada pan. Repeat with the other tortillas.

Pour the sauce over the enchiladas and sprinkle with the remaining cheddar. Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until hot and bubbly.

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7 Thoughts on “The family that cooks together…

  1. Mary Anderson on September 17, 2012 at 3:09 pm said:

    Does anyone know if you can find Hatch chilies outside the southwest region? I’ve been looking in the DC area with no luck.

  2. Those look SO good. I love enchiladas. I don’t remember how to cook together anymore. We used to before the kids. But now, we take turns cooking. If the kids are helping one of us, the other takes the role of chaos containment, but other than that, we just trade. Miss that cooking together.
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  3. Yum! Mushrooms and chard = positively savory.

    We cook together pretty frequently. But in our tiny kitchen we only have about two feet of counter space on either side of the range, so it’s pretty much “pick your work station and stick with it.” We just consider bumping into each other at the sink or bonking heads at the refrigerator “bonus interpersonal contact.”

  4. Pingback: Hatch Two Ways | Gourmet Veggie Mama

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