Gourmet Veggie Mama

Category Archives: Mexican

Taco Night, Vegetarian-Style

One of my favorite meals as a kid was fried white bean tacos. I hadn’t thought about them in ages, until I suddenly got a craving for them the other day.* So, I set about searching all of my cookbooks and scouring the internets for a recipe… but to no avail. It’s like no one had ever heard of these things! There were a few recipes out there for white bean tacos, but nothing really like what I remembered. So I had to wing it.

* Pregnancy is weird.

That’s okay. Winging it can be fun, and it yielded delicious results, very similar to what I remembered, and it actually wasn’t all that much work.

white bean tacos

I started with dried white beans, but you could easily use canned if you don’t have time for that. I made a big batch of tacos and froze the leftovers (pre-frying), so hopefully that’ll provide another, even quicker meal for us some rainy day. With a baby on the way, there are sure to be some of those days in our future!

White Bean Tacos
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 6-8
  • 1 Tbs olive oil
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 1 lb white beans (Great Northern or similar), cooked and drained (or 2 cans)
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1-2 tsp chili powder (to taste)
  • 1 small can sliced black olives
  • ¼ cup sunflower seeds
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • 16 corn tortillas
  • 2-3 Tbs canola oil, for frying
  1. Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Saute the onion until soft and translucent.
  2. Add the beans, mashing with a potato masher, and stir until heated through. Add the cumin and chili powder and stir to combine. Stir in the black olives and sunflower seeds. Remove the mixture from the heat and set aside.
  3. Heat each corn tortilla on a griddle until soft and pliable. Stuff with the white bean mixture, fold in half, and secure with a toothpick. Continue with additional tortillas until all filling is used.
  4. Heat a thin layer of canola oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add a batch of tacos and fry on one side until golden brown. Flip and fry on the other side until golden brown. Remove to a paper-towel lined plate and continue, working in batches. Serve with sour cream and hot sauce, if desired.


Vegetarian Tamale Pie

Ah, tamale pie. I confess I hadn’t ever made it before, but now that I’ve given it a shot, it’s bound to become a regular feature on our weeknight table. Not only is it quick and easy to pull together, but it also serves as a “kitchen sink” meal for veggies I have a lot of — like summer squash and zucchini. Oh, and it’s delicious.

Vegetarian Tamale Pie ~ Gourmet Veggie Mama

I used a yellow crookneck squash and a zucchini here, plus some roasted sweet peppers, but you could play around with it and add all kinda of fun stuff, depending on what you have on hand. The corn was a must, though — we had some sweet corn that the hubby had grilled a couple of weeks earlier, removed from the cob and frozen, and it was perfect in the filling. Enjoy!

5.0 from 1 reviews
Vegetarian Tamale Pie
Cuisine: Mexican
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 6
For filling:
  • 1 Tbs canola oil
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, minced or pressed
  • 2 colored sweet peppers, roasted (if desired), stemmed, seeded and chopped
  • 1 zucchini, sliced into half moons
  • 1 yellow squash, sliced into half-moons
  • 2 tsp chili powder
  • ½ tsp cumin
  • 1 can kidney beans, drained and rinsed well
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 Tbs tomato paste
  • 1 small can sliced black olives, drained
  • 1 cup fresh or frozen corn kernels
For crust:
  • 3 cups boiling water
  • 1 cups cornmeal
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 1 tsp chili powder
  • ½ cup grated cheddar cheese, plus extra to sprinkle on top
  1. Saute the onion and garlic in the oil over medium heat. When the onions are soft and translucent, add the peppers, zucchini and summer squash, along with the chili powder and cumin. Saute until softened.
  2. Add the beans, mashing with a potato masher as you incorporate them, and the salt, tomato paste, black olives and corn.
  3. Preheat the oven to 350°. Grease an 8x8 glass pan.
  4. Bring the water to a boil in a medium saucepan, and then the cornmeal gradually, stirring constantly to prevent lumps. Cook, stirring, until thickened and beginning to boil. Add the salt and chili powder.
  5. Spread half of the cornmeal mixture on the bottom and up the sides of the baking dish. Spread the filling mixture over the cornmeal mixture evenly, and top with ½ cup cheese.
  6. Drop and spread the remaining cornmeal mixture over the top. Top with additional cheese to your taste. Bake for 35-45 minutes, and serve warm.


Gourmet Veggie Mama is 2!

Happy second blogiversary to me! It’s hard to believe that my modest little website is turning 2 already. It has been quite a second year! I ran a marathon, made the jump to being a self-hosted site (which was a good decision… I think?), tried my hand at video, went to my first-ever blogger conference (TechMunch, which was great), cooked a lot of delicious food and mixed more than a few mean cocktails. Many bottles of wine were killed over the course of the year, but I like to think they didn’t die in vain. Oh, and I got knocked up and battled wicked morning sickness and food aversions that made it really hard to enjoy (or write about) food.

Earlier this year, Gourmet Veggie Mama was named one of the Top 10 Austin Food Blogs* by the Austin Chronicle. I am still humbled by that recognition — this started out as my creative outlet, and a place to write about the meals I cooked for my family, and it has grown into something more than that.

* Go check out the list — there are some great finds on there!

I want to say a big thank you to everyone who reads, regularly or occasionally, comments and otherwise follows along. I appreciate each and every one of you more than you know, and this whole thing would be no fun at all without you. I don’t know what the next year holds — with a new baby on the way, everything is likely to be topsy-turvy for a while — but here’s hoping for much more kitchen (and cocktail) creativity to come! I hope you’ll stick with me for the journey… and I just might be posting about baby food again this time next year. But I promise it won’t all be baby food.

In honor making it to 2, I’m taking a leaf from my own book from last year and making a list of my 10 favorite recipes from the past year, listed in no particular order. I hope you enjoy them — and if you’ve tried any of these recipes out, I hope you’ll take the time to let me know how you liked them, if you haven’t already. I may not be a professional photographer (puh-lease) or food stylist, but I’m trying to hone the art of recipe writing, and I always appreciate your constructive feedback.

Here’s to another fabulous year!

1. Chard and Mushroom Enchiladas with Hatch Green Chile Sauce.

Chard and Mushroom Enchiladas ~ Gourmet Veggie Mama

It’s Hatch green chile season again, and this recipe is one reason I can’t wait to get my hands on some of those green beauties!

2. Chocolate Budino.

Chocolate Budino ~ Gourmet Veggie Mama

This is not just any pudding. It’s delicious, creamy, ultra-rich chocolate decadence. Sometimes simple is best.

3. Creamy Roasted Tomato and Orzo Soup.

Creamy Roasted Tomato Orzo Soup ~ Gourmet Veggie Mama

Ah, I miss soup weather… but someday it’ll be here again. Here’s the perfect creamy tomato soup to pair with a grilled cheese.

4. Bourbon Peach Cobbler.

Bourbon Peach Cobbler

Bourbon peach cobbler. In a cast iron skillet. Need I say more?

5. Caramelized Tofu with Ramen Noodles and Kale.

Caramelized Tofu with Ramen Noodles and Kale

This is a recent one, but it’s so good, I just had to include it. It’s such an easy, no-press way to prepare tofu, and the sauce is absolutely delicious.

6. Freshly Pressed.

Freshly Pressed ~ Gourmet Veggie Mama

I really fell in love with gin this year (sigh…), and this cocktail is just the perfect mixture of delicious grapefruit and gin, made a little more complex with a splash of bitters.

7. Orecchiette with Kale and Breadcrumbs.

Orecchiette with Kale and Breadcrumbs ~ Gourmet Veggie Mama

This pasta is creamy, garlicky, kale-y deliciousness. And there’s just something about that quirky little ear-shaped pasta that makes it extra good.

8. Chocolate Chip Bread Pudding with Coffee Bourbon Sauce.

Chocolate Chip Bread Pudding with Coffee Bourbon Sauce ~ Gourmet Veggie Mama

Oh yes, I infused my own coffee bourbon… and this was the most awesome thing I made with it.

9. Chickpeas and Spinach with Garlic Aioli.

Chickpeas and Spinach with Garlic Aioli ~ Gourmet Veggie Mama

This is a delicious Middle Eastern-inspired dish finished off with a dollop of homemade garlic aioli. The best part? The aioli is incredibly easy to make, and it absolutely makes this meal.

10. Whole Wheat Blueberry Muffins.

Whole Wheat Blueberry Muffins ~ Gourmet Veggie Mama

I don’t quite know what it is about these muffins that makes them so perfect. They have the perfect, tender crumb, and they’re just amazing. Plus, this recipe is how I first discovered the wonders of white whole wheat flour.

Weeknight Enchiladas

Enchiladas around our house are usually a weekend project. I do love me some chard enchiladas, but they do tend to be more time-intensive. The other night, though, I wanted enchiladas, and I didn’t want to spend a lot of time. Enter weeknight enchiladas.

Oh yeah, you can totally pull off enchiladas on a weeknight. You just have to be choosy with your ingredients. These are simple cheese enchiladas (studded with black olives for extra fun) smothered in a flavorful red sauce.*

Weeknight Enchiladas ~ Gourmet Veggie Mama

*Excuse the photo quality. These are the leftovers (which Nora and I were lucky enough to enjoy for lunch the next day), since I originally deemed this meal not “blog-worthy.” Then the hubby convinced me otherwise, and I’m glad he did, since it’s a handy little recipe.

Is it better if you make your own sauce? Absolutely. Do you have to? Not if you’re short on time and have access to good pre-prepared enchilada sauce. The only ones I’ve found that passes the taste test are Frontera‘s line of enchilada sauces. They come in a pouch rather than a can, and both the red chile and the green chile varieties are delicious — and, most importantly, don’t taste canned. (No, I was not compensated for saying that — I just like their stuff.)

You can pull these enchiladas off, start to finish, in 30 minutes. Can’t beat that! Serve them with a dollop of sour cream on top, plus refried beans and rice on the side. I like to jazz up plain brown rice with a can of green chiles and tomatoes (drained) and a bit of tomato paste. Enjoy!

Weeknight Enchiladas
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4-5
  • 8 oz colby jack cheese (can substitute cheddar or jack cheese)
  • 10 corn tortillas
  • 1 pouch Frontera red enchilada sauce
  • 1 small can sliced black olives (optional)
  • olive oil for spraying
  • sour cream for serving
  1. Preheat the oven to 400°. Shred the cheese and set aside about ¼ to ½ cup for topping the enchiladas.
  2. Spray an enchilada pan with oil and keep it handy. Heat a griddle or a large skillet over medium-high heat. Spray or brush the first tortilla on one side and place, oiled side down, on the griddle. Spray or brush the other side, while heating, and then flip. Remove from the heat and place in the enchilada pan.
  3. Working while the tortilla is still hot (but cool enough to handle), fill the center of the tortilla with cheese and roll it up. Place it seam side down in the enchilada pan, and repeat the process with the remaining tortillas.
  4. When the pan is full, spread the sauce over the enchiladas and sprinkle with black olives and the reserved cheese. Bake for 15 minutes, or until warm and bubbly. Serve topped with sour cream.


Sweet Potato and Chard Enchiladas

Not long ago, a friend sent me a clipping from the Austin American-Statesman. In her column Food Matters, Addie Broyles had tracked down the recipe for El Monumento’s swiss chard and sweet potato enchiladas. I knew at first look that this was a recipe I needed to try, but I also knew I’d need to have some time on my hands when I did it.

Last weekend, I had some time. My mom was over to visit, and she chased after Nora while the hubby worked on the finishing touches (finally!) to the paint in our entryway and I puttered around in the kitchen.

Sweet potato and chard enchiladas

This was a very different, healthy-but-not-healthy-tasting enchilada. My balsamic reduction was pretty ugly — I should have let it reduce past half to a more syrup-y consistency, but, lesson learned. It still tasted good! Next time I would strain the sauce, too, as the recipe provides, to give it a smoother texture.

We all ate the enchiladas up, served with refried black beans (homemade by the hubby) and brown rice on the side. What a delicious way to get your veggies!

Sweet Potato and Chard Enchiladas
Serves: 4
  • 1 lb sweet potatoes, peeled and diced small
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 large bunch chard, stems removed, roughly chopped (about 2 cups)
  • 2 Tbsp canola oil, divided, plus more for brushing tortillas
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 guajillo chiles, stemmed and seeded
  • 2 garlic cloves, peeled and smashed with the flat side of a chef's knife
  • 1 cup chopped walnuts
  • ½ cup dry white wine
  • 1½ cups heavy cream
  • ½ cup balsamic vinegar
  • 8 corn tortillas
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  1. Preheat the oven to 350°. Toss the sweet potatoes with olive oil, salt and pepper and roast in a roasting pan until tender, 20-25 minutes, stirring a couple of times to ensure even browning.
  2. Heat 1 Tbsp canola oil in a large sauté pan over medium high heat. Add the chard and sauté until slightly wilted, then add the sweet potatoes and stir until the chard is tender. Season with salt and pepper to finish. Set aside.
  3. Meanwhile, heat 1 Tbsp canola oil over medium-high heat in a sauté pan. Sauté the onions, garlic and chiles until the onions are softened and translucent, then reduce the heat and continue cooking until the onions are caramelized.
  4. Add the walnuts and sauté until lightly toasted. Deglaze the pan with the white wine, then add the cream and simmer to reduce by one third.
  5. Let the mixture cool slightly, and then puree in a blender or food processor. Strain (if desired) and set aside.
  6. While the sauce is simmering, place the balsamic vinegar in a sauce pan, bring to a boil and simmer to reduce by half or more, until the consistency is syrupy and thick. Set aside.
  7. One by one, brush the tortillas with canola oil and heat briefly on each side on a griddle over medium heat.
  8. Fill each tortilla with the sweet potato-chard mixture, roll and place in an enchilada pan. Repeat for remaining servings.
  9. Ladle the walnut cream sauce over the enchiladas and drizzle with reduced balsamic vinegar.
  10. Warm to serving temperature, a few minutes in the oven. Serve with beans and rice.


How the @#$ do you use a rolling pin?

Editor’s note: Hey-o! As part of my collaboration with Cooking Planit, the hubby (aka Gourmet Omnivore Husband) has agreed to share his tortilla-making expertise. That’s right — homemade tortillas. Hands off ladies; he’s taken.


Flour tortillas are a mainstay of southwestern cooking. At worst, a flour tortilla will be a capable conveyor of a tasty meal from plate to mouth, but at best, it is a meal in and of itself.

Growing up in Texas, my family would have our share of taco dinners, but — let’s face it — cooking in the ’80s generally meant buying a packet of 20 Mission tortillas. A kid may not know the difference, but as you get older, you will surely find better tortillas out there. I actually really enjoy Taco Cabana’s flour tortillas, for instance, in a pinch. If you are in a Trader Joe’s state, their “Real Handmade” tortillas are really top-notch, and in Texas, H-E-B makes a pretty darn good tortilla in their stores as well.

But, you probably aren’t on a cooking blog to learn where to buy stuff (though it may help). I haven’t been doing nearly as much cooking now that Lauren has dedicated herself full-time to domestic perfection,* but one thing I tackled this year was flour tortillas, and I am glad I did. For one, they are easy, cheap, and extremely delicious. For another – I learned how to use a rolling pin. Yay.

rolling out tortillas

* Ed: I totally did not make him say that. Thanks, honey!

You can get the recipe for homemade tortilla goodness over at Cooking Planit, where it’s part of a delicious meal with spicy black bean soup.

Tex-Mex Tastes

Before you start on your tortillas, though, the most important thing to know is that you can keep these on hand in dough form easily enough (in the fridge for a day or so, or frozen for longer), so I would strongly recommend you always double the recipe.

Homemade tortillas are great as a complement to chili or beans, or as a wrapper for a tasty burrito, as Nora can attest.

nora burrito

If you have leftover dough — which if you doubled the recipe, you do — do yourself a favor and make some sort of tortilla dessert. My favorite is to make a sopapilla doppelgänger using the cast iron skillet. Put about 2 Tbsp butter in there and heat it until it is almost smoking. Make your tortilla but leave it a bit thicker (maybe 6 inches across). Toss it in. It’ll take a bit longer to cook since it is thicker, but have patience. When you flip it, sprinkle it with some cinnamon, sugar or nutmeg (or a combo). After removing from skillet, put some delicious honey on there. Oh yes. It won’t puff up like a sopapilla, but it will surely taste delicious.

Chilaquiles to the rescue!

This has been a heckuva week. I had my first freelance editing job, which involved leaving Nora in the care of others* all day on Tuesday and Wednesday. It was a fantastic opportunity for me with a magazine I’ve wanted to get in with since we decided to move to Austin, and I’m so glad I did it, but it was hard. It was my first time to leave Nora with anyone other than her daddy or my mom for a whole day, and even that hasn’t happened often. Plus, it was two whole days in a row. Yikes! I think it was harder on me than it was on her (I was the one who did the commuting, after all), but we all felt pretty drained by the time the week was over.**

* Austin readers, I heartily endorse Plug & Play as excellent childcare (with workspace attached!). It was started by a friend of mine — check it out if you work part-time, or even if you’re just looking for part-time preschool for your kiddo. Nora goes twice a week and loves it. (I am not being compensated in any way for saying this — I just really love it and want it to succeed.)

** I know that I am, comparatively speaking, in no position to complain. I honestly don’t know how families with both parents working full-time jobs make it all happen and manage to stay sane. I am in awe. 

Each day I had planned to put something in the crock pot before I left, or prepare a meal ahead that would only require a short time in the oven so that we could all sit down to eat promptly after getting home, but, ’twas not to be. After a long day, the last thing I wanted was to cook a meal for the next day. What I really wanted to do was collapse on the couch… but the compromise was scrambling around, packing a lunch for Nora, making sure her stuff was ready to go the next morning, and taking care of all the tasks that had been neglected during the day. And, of course, then it was bedtime. *Zonk*

So it came to pass that it was almost dinnertime, and I was walking in the door with a hungry toddler, a husband close on our heels, and nothing to feed them. Takeout? That’s for the weak (and those with a budget more flexible than mine). Mac and cheese? Nah, I’ve been spoiled by the homemade stuff, even if my toddler might not agree. So what’s quick and easy and still tasty? Chilaquiles!

Now, I had never actually made chilaquiles before, but I keep seeing them popping up in one form or another lately. I can’t remember the blog I saw them on most recently, so if you’re out there, shout out! I want to give credit where credit is due for the inspiration. Chilaquiles come in many different incarnations, but I decided to make something super-simple so we could sit down and eat ASAP.

I heated up some oil to fry a few corn tortilla strips, got the warm water running to defrost a bag of tomatillo sauce I’d made a few months ago (hooray for planning for  rainy day!), and conscripted the hubby into frying a batch of eggs for us. Pretty soon it was dinnertime!


Served with a side of refried black beans, we all had a delicious feast. The original plan was to use queso fresco for topping the dish, but, alas, the half-wheel we had in the fridge was, as the hubby put it, past its prime. Some grated Monterey Jack got the job done, though. I highly recommend this dish when you’re pressed for time, assuming you have the ingredients on hand. Your family will come away happy!


4 corn tortillas, sliced into 1/4-inch strips
1 cup tomatillo sauce***
4 eggs
1/2 cup grated Monterey Jack cheese
Canola oil and butter for frying

Heat a good layer of canola oil in the bottom of a large skillet over medium-high heat. When the oil shimmers, add the tortilla strips, working in batches if needed, and fry until crisp, turning over or stirring to ensure even cooking.

Warm the tomatillo sauce in a small saucepan or the microwave. Meanwhile, fry the eggs. Heat a couple of pats of butter in an egg pan over medium-high heat. Crack the eggs into the skillet and cook, flipping once set, until desired doneness is achieved.****

Divide the tortilla strips between plates and top with a good scoop of tomatillo sauce. Top with fried eggs (two per serving for adults; one should do for kiddos) and additional tomatillo sauce. Sprinkle the cheese on top and serve warm with refried black beans and/or Spanish rice on the side.

*** Or substitute other enchilada sauce or even salsa.

**** I like mine over medium, and the hubby opts for over easy.

Family dinner… and migas!

I just cooked dinner for the whole family for the first time since Nora started eating “real” food… and mama needs a glass of wine.

I know that may be a little surprising. You see, ever since Nora was itty bitty, the hubby and I have had dinner after she’s in bed. With her bedtime creeping a little bit later, though, we have been discussing starting to eat dinner together as a family before she goes to bed, and this weekend we decided to try it out.

In theory, it should have been fine. Nora was playing outside with her daddy and some other kids from the neighborhood, and I ventured inside to get dinner started so I could have everything on the table by 6. But, you know what they say about best-laid plans.

Nora has been pretty cranky from teething lately,* and combine that with mounting frustration from her legs just not being quite long enough to ride the tricycle she wanted to ride, and ka-blooey. Inside comes the hubby with a very upset munchkin, and all she wanted was her mommy. Mommy’s lap, and Mommy’s attention — nothing else would do. One can’t very well cook migas with a child sitting on one’s lap on the floor.

* Those two-year molars, I tell ya. No fun at all.

The hubby pinch-hit for a while, with me feeding him instructions, and then eventually Nora was feeling better and ready to play for a while. Daddy was an acceptable playmate, so I took back over the dinner preparations. Of course, by this time, it was nigh on dinnertime, and Nora started begging for crispy tortilla strips the moment she saw them come out of the pan. With a little daddy-run interference and fancy footwork, I was able to heat up some broccoli and get that and some berries on the table for her to munch on while I finished dinner. Whew. Finally it was time for the hubby and I to sit down and eat, too.

And eat we did.

The migas were good, fortunately, despite their haphazard preparation. Nora enjoyed them thoroughly, peppers and all… although she might have preferred a big plate of tortilla strips heaped with sour cream and cheese instead.

More cheese, please!

Mama will be testing out some crock pot and other make-ahead meals soon to try to avert this situation in the future. So, help a mother out: What are your favorite make-ahead meals?

For now, though, it’s time to sit down and enjoy a glass of wine. I highly recommend the migas, as breakfast or dinner, but try to make them when there’s not a clingy toddler around.

Adapted from this recipe from Stella Cooks

2 Tbs butter
4 corn tortillas, cut intro 1/4″ strips
6 eggs
1/4 cup milk or cream
1 tsp salt
1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
1 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp cumin
1/4 tsp smoked paprika**
1-2 minced hot peppers, to taste (jalapeños or serranos work best)
2 small sweet peppers (or 1 large), stemmed, seeded, and chopped
1 small red onion (or 1/2 large), finely chopped
grated cheddar or Monterey Jack cheese, for topping
sour cream, for topping
salsa, for topping

Melt the butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the tortilla strips and fry until just crispy, stirring occasionally. Remove the strips to a paper towel to drain. Turn the stovetop heat to low.

Meanwhile, crack the eggs into a medium bowl. Whisk lightly until the yolks are broken, then drizzle in the milk or cream, continuing to whisk. Add the salt, pepper, garlic powder, cumin, and smoked paprika and whisk lightly to mix. Then add the peppers and onions, stir lightly, and set aside.

Pour the egg mixture into the skillet, and allow it to sit for just about a minute, then begin to stir. The mixture will quickly begin to firm up. Continue to lightly fold the eggs over repeatedly until they reach the perfect consistency.

Spread the tortilla strips over two plates. Top with the scrambled egg mixture. Sprinkle the grated cheese over the top of the eggs, and add generous dollops of sour cream and salsa to the tops. Serve immediately, while still hot.

** What do you mean you don’t have any? Go get some! It’s my favorite spice ever, and, as a vegetarian, I use it in all kinds of dishes to help substitute for the smoky flavor of bacon.

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.

It’s Hatch chile season!

It is our first Hatch chile season back in Austin, and I am psyched! I don’t know why these little beauties are not the big, fat deal in other places that they seem to be here, but they are amazing.

When we lived in Northern California, the only place we could find them was at a Nob Hill close(ish) to our house, before it closed and turned into an Asian market. It’s kind of a long story, but we found an alternate supplier eventually, although, honest-to-goodness, it involved a San Francisco-to-New Mexico exchange of sourdough bread for green chiles.

Anyway… we’d buy a good 10 lbs of Hatch green chiles when they appeared in the produce case (got some weird looks doing that!), and then the hubby would spend all day one weekend roasting them on the grill. We’d feast on them — a couple of years we even threw a Hatch chile party! — and then freeze the rest, either whole or as enchilada sauce, to use throughout the year… or at least for as long as they lasted.

Hatch chile season is only a couple of weeks in late August, but people here go crazy for it. Chuy’s has a special Hatch green chile menu. Central Market, one of the big local gourmet groceries, features everything from Hatch green chile scones to homemade Hatch salsa to cheese with Hatch chiles. The best part, though? You can buy chiles roasted right there in the store to do with as you will.

Oh yeah.

No more day-long roasting extravaganza!

We’ve been hard at work in the kitchen lately, putting our Hatch green chiles to good use. Hatch black bean burgers were a hit.

Green chile deliciousness.

For a simple dinner the other night, the hubby made Hatch quesadillas with Hatch-studded queso quesadilla and slices of Hatch chiles, topped with a delicious Hatch salsa verde we picked up at the farmer’s market.

Could it be any more Hatch?

We also made Hatch popcorn, and even Hatch breakfast tacos, complete with homemade tortillas.*

* More on that later. I think I’m going to get the hubby to blog about it, since he was the chef. They were absolutely delicious and nowhere near as hard as I expected they’d be.

I think I may try my hand at a Hatch green chile mac and cheese this week. And, as a special treat, I’ll be infusing some Hatch green chile tequila to try and replicate the New Mexican martini I blogged about a while back. Look for a guest post about that over at Boozed + Infused sometime soon.

I’ll leave you with my all-time favorite recipe for Hatch green chile enchilada sauce, which is super-simple and freezes very well. If you haven’t tried these beauties, they’re worth searching for!

Hatch Green Chile Enchilada Sauce

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

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. Heat to serving temperature, or cool and freeze for later use.

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