Vegetarian Enchiladas Verde

Oooof, sigh..... This the sound of me pulling my tired old legs up on the railing, just before I lean back into the recline position on this patio chair, take a big gulp of my Hefeweizen and sit here taking it all in. The view from the front patio is a perfectly aligned garden, created by one individual who shows some signs of OCD. I spent half an hour each day picking weeds and flowers petals that fell from the previous night. Yes, I am one of those people. Yesterday I laid down the final bit of compost, and now I will wait to see which plants flourish, which ones sprout flowers, and which ones spread so fast they take over the garden. I've spent the last 3 weeks pulling weeds, trying to tame the ivy, and digging up a few tons of red mulch that were previously laid as a ground cover. There is still much work to be done. I haven't even begun to think about the backyard, and that giant pit of buried construction material is now considered dead to me. But for now, I will sit here and focus on what's been accomplished, not the work that still needs to be done. This is the motto you need to commit to, in order to stay sane as a homeowner.

Things are finally starting to come together though. Most of my things have a home, whether it's temporary or not, they are good solid locations that make sense for the most part. Yesterday I was looking for a pair of nail clippers, and it was pretty nice to be able to find them in the 'nail clipper spot' instead of rummaging through the box labeled bathroom stuff only to realize that I own 8 refillable leg razor handles and no blades. And no sign of the nail clippers.

The only major house issue that seems to need immediate attention, and one that stresses me majorly, is our old janky chimney built in the early 1900's. It's missing quite a bit of mortar on the bottom half, and the top half looks like it's not even attached to the roof. We've had a few companies come out and look at it. Some have been legit. Some have treated me like I'm a naive housewife who couldn't possibly have the slightest clue about chimneys. The same sort of bull-shitty attitude I frequently get from car mechanics. I was so pissed after these few negative encounters, that I decided to do something really hardcore, so I built myself some closet shelves - and not the wire kind. The kind that involves a lot of power tools, drilling, and sawing. I may not know much about chimneys, but that's not because I am female, it's because I don't give a shit.

Something that I do care about though, and the reason why I will probably never leave the US, is Mexican food. It's so foreign when I go back to Canada. 'Can you point me in the direction of the masa harina grocery clerk?'. 'Hmm, what is that?'. Corn tortillas, don't even think about trying to find them. To be fair, I am talking about the small town where my family lives, because there are probably many parts of Canada that sell masa harina and corn tortillas, but Canada is huge, and you're probably stuck driving for days to find some.

We have so many great Mexican restaurants here in Seattle, that I rarely cook Mexican food at home, which sounds like a real crime after hearing myself say that out loud. For the most part, I find it to be pretty labor intensive if you're making your own tortillas from scratch. I'm also slowly getting acquainted with the different flavors, so I don't quite have the skills to be able to whip something up from scratch (unless you're talking about fish tacos) because I make those always. I've made salsa verde (green salsa) a few times and this enchilada sauce is just a take on that. Tomatillos are in season right now, so I bought a boatload, and I made a double batch of this sauce. I will eat it on everything until the very last drop.



makes 7 enchiladas

Verde Sauce Ingredients

1 1/2 lb tomatillos, husks removed

2 serrano chiles, stems removed

3 cloves garlic

1/4 cup onion, chopped

a handful of cilantro stems removed

1 tsp salt

Enchilada Ingredients

2 tbsp canola oil, 

or any light tasting frying oil

1/2 lb tofu, diced

1/4 cup onions, diced

1 cup corn

1 can of white or black beans

1 tsp salt

7 small-med corn tortillas

queso fresco or mozzarella

Place the tomatillos and the serrano chiles into a large pot covered with water, and bring to a boil. Reduce the temperature and simmer until the tomatillos are soft. Remove the tomatillos and chiles from the pot and place into a blender with 1/2 cup of the leftover cooking water, garlic, onion, cilantro, and salt. Puree until smooth.

Fry the tofu, onions, corn, and beans, in canola oil until the onions and tofu have begun to brown slightly. Add a quarter cup of the prepared verde sauce and 1 tsp salt and combine. Transfer the mixture to a bowl. Pour the rest of the verde sauce into the same frying pan and heat on low.

Preheat the oven to 350ºF.

In a 9 x 13" baking dish, ladle in enough of the verde sauce to cover the bottom.

To assemble the enchiladas, begin by dipping a tortilla into the verde sauce to coat. Place the tortilla into the baking dish and scoop in two large spoonfuls of the tofu filling. Roll the tortilla, and place it at the end of the dish seem facing down. Repeat with the rest of the tortillas. They should all fit snug in the dish.

Pour the rest of the verde sauce over the enchiladas. Top with queso fresco or mozzarella. Place in the oven and bake until cheese is melted if you are using mozzarella, 5 minutes. If you are using queso fresco, it won't melt, so heat until enchiladas are warm, should take 5 minutes.

Top with avocado, lettuce, green onions, or radishes, with a lime on the side. Enchiladas can be stored in the fridge for a couple of days or in the freezer for 4 months, and reheated when needed.