Monday, October 12, 2009

Enchilada Casserole

If you've read some of our earliest blog posts, you know that Kay has always been in the kitchen with me. When she was a baby, I'd put her bouncy chair on the kitchen table and she watched. When she was about 4, she started making cornbread. Then when she was about 8 she was helping with the cutting, sauteing, and kneading. But she is now 12 years old and it is a whole new phase which involves a lot of complaining and eye rolling and stomping around the house. That is why I was so happy yesterday when she came up to me with one of her old cookbooks and asked if she could make dinner! That is why I'm posting this, even though we don't have a picture. This is a truly momentous occasion!

Actually, this casserole wasn't very attractive anyway. It did taste really good though. Not at all like what I expected. It is out of Kay's favorite cookbook "Kids Can Cook: Vegetarian Recipes" which we've mentioned before. We've had nothing but success out of this book. I will warn you though, this recipe ended up taking about an hour and a half to prepare.

Since I don't have a picture of the food, I'll post a picture of Kay so you can get a taste of the atmosphere around our house lately.

That is Kay with her aunt. We had just got back from the park. She was mad because she was thirsty but I didn't take a water bottle with and her uncle was talking and not unlocking the apartment door so she could get a drink. Oh the stress that is her life!

Enchilada Casserole
(This is half a recipe. The original made 8 servings.)

First make the chili gravy:
3 tablespoons oil
1 onion, chopped
1 tablespoon chili powder
1/2 tablespoon cumin powder
1/2 tablespoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon black pepper
1/4 cup flour
3 cups water

In a large pot, saute the onion in the oil over low heat. Cook until the onions are soft. Add the dry ingredients and stir into the onions. Slowly add the water to the pot, stirring with a whisk to remove all the lumps. Simmer over low heat for 20 minutes, whisking occasionally.
Casserole assembly:
Chili gravy
8 flour tortillas
2 cans pinto beans, rinsed
cheddar cheese (or melty cheese sauce)

Heat the oven to 350 degrees. Pour half the chili gravy into the bottom of an 8x10 dish. Heat a skillet over medium heat and spray it with a light layer of oil. Cook each tortilla on each side about 30 seconds.

Spread a big spoonful of beans in the tortilla and roll it up. Place it on the gravy in the dish. Continue with all remaining tortillas. Pour the remaining gravy over the enchiladas.

Top the casserole with cheese of your choice.

Bake for 40 minutes. To serve, cut into squares.

Melty Cheese Sauce:
In a small sauce pan, mix together:
1/4 cup nutritional yeast
1/4 cup cornstarch
1 tablespoon flour
1/2 teaspoon salt

Whisk in:
1 cup water
1/4 cup canola oil
1/2 teaspoon yellow mustard.

Cook and stir until the sauce thickens.

Kay: (She's at school now. I'll see if she has time to post later. I know one thing she will say is that the onions should have been cut smaller! She seemed to like it though and for once didn't complain about dinner.)

Dana (Mom): We usually don't add salt to our recipes but both the cheese sauce and the gravy needed it. We make a lot of different kinds of enchiladas but this was really different. The beans, tortillas, and sauce all blended together. The cheese sauce is your typically nutritional yeast fake cheese. If you don't like nutritional yeast (which I happen to love) then you won't like this! Kay and Bill had regular cheese on their part. We did it all in the same pan without any problem.