Not Fried Chilaquiles

As a hispanic person in America, I often have to explain to people that I’m not Mexican.  People just assume we’re all Mexican and that all our food is the same.  It’s not.  That’s cool.

Growing up I didn’t really eat Mexican food.  Now that I’m marrying a Mexican, I’ve eaten my fair share of Mexican food (and I’m not talking about burritos and carne asada fries).  So this brings me to chilaquiles.

Last year, Jesse and I went to Guadalajara to hang out with his family for a few days.  That’s where I first tried chilaquiles (you’re probably wondering how I grew up in Southern California and never ate chilaquiles, right? I have no idea).

I had them in a market in Guanajuato for breakfast and roughly 3 hours later, I threw them up at a gas station.  All sorts of cute, right?

Needless to say, chilaquiles did not leave a good impression on me.  I think those ones were just super greasy and I was sick.  It was not a good combination, and I sort of decided I didn’t need to eat chilaquiles again.

But recently, Jesse has been talking about chilaquiles (side note: this is what Jesse does. He gets really excited about making certain dishes until he finally does).  He swore to make the most delicious chilaquiles without all the oil (because usually the tortillas are fried).  So I said why not?

chilaquiles4

They were delicious and best of all, I didn’t puke them up.  (I’m really selling chilaquiles over here).  I liked them so much that he made them again so I could blog about them.

So if you’re looking for a fun, lightened up weekend brunch that is pretty simple (and natural! no canned things!), here’s your go to:

chilaquiles3

Not Fried Chilaquiles

6-8 corn tortilla
3 Tomatoes
1 Serrano Pepper
3 Chiles de Arbol
2 Cloves of Garlic
Salt to Taste
1 1/2 tablespoons corn/vegetable oil
2 Eggs
Queso Fresco
Diced Onion
Chopped Cilantro
Sour Cream

Preheat oven to 300F.  Slice tortillas into strips.

tortillas1

Place on a rack on top of a baking sheet and bake about 20 minutes or until crispytortillas2tortillas3

In the meantime, make your chilaquiles sauce.  Boil 3 tomatoes with 1 serrano pepper and 3 chiles de arbol in enough water to cover tomatoes.

sauce ingredients

Boil until soft (about 15 minutes).  Next blend together tomatoes, serrano pepper, chiles and garlic until smooth with 1/2 cup of boiling liquid (discard rest of liquid).  In the sauce pan that you used to boil the ingredients, heat one tablespoon of oil.  Once hot, carefully pour in the sauce. Let it cook a bit longer until ready to use.  At this point, add salt to taste.

Now you can start to assemble.  In a pan, heat 1/2 tablespoon of oil.  Add crispy tortillas and toss them.  Then crack in two eggs and scramble them around the tortillas.

tortillas4

Once the egg is cooked, pour the sauce on top of the tortillas and serve.

chilaquiles

Top with fresh chopped onion and cilantro, queso fresco and a dollop of sour cream.  Serve with beans if you’d like.

This is enough to feed 2 people a good amount.

chilaquiles2

A note about spiciness: I like spicy, but not too much.  To accommodate my tastes, Jesse only used half the serrano pepper.  You can also discard the seeds from the serrano pepper and chile de arbol to make it less spicy.  For more heat, add a few more chiles de arbol.

Make chilaquiles! You’ll like them!

What’s your favorite Mexican breakfast dish? I’m a big fan of eggs and beans.  This is probably why I had never tried chilaquiles.

 

Advertisements

Vegan Fusion Tacos

I don’t know about you, but I love fusion food.  My favorite is some sort of Asian cuisine combined with Latin. Food trucks are particularly good at this.   Kogi is the perfect example.  Their short rib taco is nothing short of amazing.  There’s another food truck around Orange County that has a banh mi taco.  Amazing.

I’m also a big fan of Taco Tuesday.  I wish I took advantage of it more often.  I really wanted to hit up my favorite taco spot today, but then I remembered I should probably save money (and calories).  Instead I made tacos at home with ingredients I already had, and thus this italian-mexican fusion vegan creation was born:

VeganFusionTacos1

Vegan Fusion Tacos

1 corn or flour tortilla
2 tbsp avocado pesto hummus
2 artichoke hearts, halved
a few sliced thinly sliced zucchini
1 tsp nutritional yeast (optional)

Heat tortilla.  Spread tortilla with Avocado Pesto Hummus.  Top with artichoke hearts, zucchini slices, then sprinkle with nutritional yeast.  If you want to go crazy, squeeze some extra lemon on top.  You won’t be sorry.  Then devour.

VeganFusionTacos2

Note: If you make a full avocado pesto hummus recipe, you should be able to make about 6-8 tacos.

Do you see the fusion in here?  Italian ingredients: Garbanzo beans, Artichoke Hearts, Zucchini, Basil.  Latin/Mexican: Lemon, Avocado, Tortilla.

I think that’s pretty good.

So there you have it.  Tasty vegan dinner, ready in about 10 minutes.  Get your Taco Tuesday on.

Black Bean Enchiladas

So on this thing that I’m calling Operation Make-Dinner (my desperate way to make myself eat healthy meals instead of snacking for dinner), I’m realizing that one person doesn’t require that much food.

I can cook two large (and my large I mean 4-6 servings) per week and that will last for lunch and dinner throughout the week.  Luckily, I don’t get tired of eating the same thing over and over again.

Earlier this week, I made Buffalo Chicken Spaghetti Squash.  I had it for dinner once, then lunch two consecutive days after.

buffalochickenspaghettisquash2

So on the days when I had Buffalo Chicken Spaghetti Squash for lunch, I had Black Bean Enchiladas for dinner.

blackbeanenchiladas2


These aren’t super fancy enchiladas like the kind you have in restaurants, these are much simpler and healthier.  I didn’t fry the tortillas, they’re not filled with fatty meats and cheese.  It’s mostly beans and vegetables, sauce and a sprinkle of cheese.

For a week night meal, that’s what it should be: mostly vegetables.  I used shredded carrots and bell peppers because that’s what I had on-hand (the carrots were left over from the Buffalo Chicken Spaghetti Squash).

To make life easier (and for portion control), I baked them in small glass containers (instead of a large 9×13 pan)

blackbeanenchiladas1

Black Bean Enchiladas

1-2 tbsp olive oil
1 onion, diced
1 cup shredded carrots
1 bell pepper (I used a bunch of mini bell peppers)
2 cups black beans (I cooked them Guatemala style last week, but you can use canned too)
1-2 tsp cumin powder (depending on how you like it)
1/4 cilantro, finely chopped (plus extra for garnish, optional)
juice of 1 lime
12-15 tortillas
1-2 large (28oz) cans of enchilada sauce (or make your own)*

Heat oil in a large skillet.  Add onions, pepper and carrots and cook until onions are translucent, about 5 minutes.  Stir in black beans and cumin, cook an additional 3 minutes.  Stir in cilantro and squeeze in lime juice, stir until well-combined.   This filling is awesome on it’s own, I had leftovers and am planning to eat it just with some rice…

enchiladafilling

But back to the recipe…

Pre-heat oven to 375F.  Next start to assemble enchiladas, pour some of the enchilada sauce in to the bottom of whatever baking dish you use (I used 3 small ones, only made 9 enchiladas and had left over filling as another meal with rice).  Heat tortillas in the microwave to soften (if they break when you try to roll them, just microwave for a few seconds), place some of the filling down the middle, roll tortilla and place seamside-down in the baking dish.  Repeat until you’ve filled your dish or you run out of tortillas and filling.  Pour remaining enchilada sauce over tortillas and sprinkle with cheese.  Bake 20-30 minutes or until the sauce bubbles.  Remove from oven, allow to cool a few minutes then serve with sour cream, cilantro and avocado.

*Note: I like a lot of sauce, I used one big (28 oz can) for 9 enchiladas, so if you’re making more you might want to get 2 cans.  If you like it less saucy, then one can would be enough.

blackbeanenchiladas3


These were a great dinner two nights in a row.  I still have leftovers for tonight, which is great!

This weekend, I’m not making dinners, because Saturday I’m having a chicken and waffle party and I’m wayyy too excited.  Can’t wait to tell you about it!

What are your plans for the weekend?

Chipotle Fish Tacos

Cinco de Mayo just happened.  You’re probably tired of Mexican food, but let’s be honest Corona and Guacamole don’t really qualify as Mexican food.  That doesn’t really qualify as food.  That’s a snack.

And it’s Tuesday.  Taco Tuesday.  How about some tacos?

assembletacotext

Trust me.  You need these tacos in your life.

I remember the first time I ate these tacos.  Jesse made them for me, pretty early on in our relationship, and I was skeptical.  But I swear it was love at first bite.  I’m talking about the tacos here.

fishtaco2

Ever since that first time, I’ve probably had them a dozen times with a million variations: shrimp, chicken, etc.

But these are the best.

Chipotle Fish Tacos

3 pieces of tilapia, cut into small pieces
1/2 tbsp olive oil
1/2 an onion, diced
1-2 chipotle peppers in adobo, chopped
1/4 cup cilantro
Juice of 1/2 lime
salt and pepper
1-2 cups cabbage, thinly sliced
1 diced tomato
1/4 cup mayo
1 tbsp sriracha*
a few lime wedges
1 avocado sliced
6 tortillas

Heat oil in the pan.  Add 1/4 of onion (so you’ll have 1/4 of onion left for putting on the tacos) and cook for a few mins.   Add fish and chipotle (depending on how hot you want it use 1-2 or more, for less spice just use the adobo sauce, not the chile itself), cook for a few minutes until fish is no longer translucent.  Stir in juice of 1/2 lime, about a tablespoon of cilantro and season with salt and pepper.  Set aside.

taco ingredients2

Stir together sriracha and mayo.  Thin out with some lime juice or water.  Depending on how spicy you like it, the ratio of sriracha to mayo  might be different for you.  Add a bit, try it and add more if you’d like.

Now you can start assembling your tacos (this recipe will make about 6 tacos).  Heat up your tortillas.  Start by laying some fish in the center.

assembletaco1

Then you add your ingredients of choice.  We like to have it all on a plate at the table and assemble as we go.

taco ingredients

Lay on the cabbage, tomato, onion, cilantro and avocado.

assembletaco2

Then drizzle with sriracha mayo.  Squirt with a wedge of lime and devour.

fishtaco1

That’s exactly what I do.  I devour these, because they’re amazing.

Happy Taco Tuesday!  What’s your favorite kind of taco?

I love fish tacos, but I think shrimp tacos are my favorite.

Cóctel de Camarón: Shrimp! Yes, Please!

So today, was a crazy day.  Ok it totally wasn’t crazy.  I was just exhausted.  I somehow had the bright idea of going to crossfit twice in a 12 hour time span…  I hurt real bad right now. I don’t recommend it.  Give yourself at least 24 hours between workouts.  It’s a good idea.

But work outs aside, today was a bizarre day for me in terms of personal realizations.  Way back when, I used to use SparkPeople to track calories, but I hadn’t logged in for almost a year.  So this morning, I randomly did…

I saw my last log in was after I got back from Italy where I ate my weight (and then some) in Nutella, Pasta and Gelato for nearly 6 months.  Since then, I’ve lost 18 pounds.  That’s kind of a lot on someone who is only 5’3″

I guess getting back home, eating normal meals and exercising a few times a week served me well (even if Paleo didn’t…).

So in honor of the fact that my butt (among other things) shrank, let me tell you about an actual meal (as much as I love cake, it’s not a meal) that is more or less balanced, light and delicious too.

cocteldecamaron2

I would consider this to be moderately healthy.  Depending on what you serve with it that is…

cocteldecamaron3

It involves shrimp, tomatoes, onions and a few splashes of (unhealthy) secret ingredients:

ingredients

Cóctel de Camarón

3 cloves of garlic
1/2 onion, diced
1 lb Shrimp, peel on
2 cups clamato
1-2 tbsp ketchup
2 tbsp orange soda
2-3 limes
2 tomatoes, diced
1/2 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
Salt
1 Avocado, sliced
Tostadas, for serving

In a blender (I used my magic bullet), blend together 1/4 of an onion  (reserve remaining diced onion) and 3 garlic cloves with some water.  Once it’s smooth, add to a sauce pan.  Fill with water until about 2-3 inches from the top.  Add some salt (or a pinch of bouillon) and bring to a boil.  In the meantime, rinse your shrimp and place in a metal mesh strainer.

Cook shrimp in the broth by dipping the strainer into the broth, like this…

shrimpbroth

Once the shrimp is cooked (pink all over, be careful to not overcook), place in a bowl over some ice.  You might have to do this in batches.

Next take about 2 cups of the cooking broth and place in a large bowl.

ingredients2

Add about 2 cups of clamato, ketchup, lime juice and orange soda.   Be careful, it’s a science.  Taste it along the way to see how it is.

mixingingredients

Stir it all together and set aside.  Next peel your shrimp (alternatively you could peel your shrimp before cooking then put the skins in the broth to help give it more flavor).  Now you’re ready to assemble.

shrimp

Start by putting a good amount of diced tomato (1/2 cup?), onions, cilantro and Serrano chili in your bowl.  Then add the shrimp and avocado.  Last pour the broth/clamato mixture over your shrimp.  You want a good amount in there because it gives it great flavor.

cocteldecamaron

From there, you’re pretty much ready to go.  But don’t forget one important thing…

pacifico

A beer.  Because life is all about balance and a cold beer tastes great with this dish.

Serve with tostadas, extra lime, salt and hot sauce (optional).  This will serve 2-3 people.

cocteldecamaron1

Whoever said that the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach as probably right, but they forgot that the way to a woman’s heart is the same direction.  I wish I could take credit for this, but I can’t.  It was made entirely by an awesome boyfriend who makes ridiculously tasty things.

He makes me generally healthy meals, while I make him cookies and pies.

Clearly, a little bit of both is necessary.  Eat some shrimp and vegetables, as well as some cookies and wine.

What was the last healthy meal you had?