February 28, 2016
Here's a new book you might enjoy.
Title: Enchiladas: Aztec to Tex-Mex
Authors: Cappy Lawton and Chris Waters Dunn
Publisher: San Antonio, Texas: Trinity University Press, 2016
Price: $39.95 U.S.
This over-sized book has absolutely gorgeous pictures, on glossy paper. But it's not just another pretty face. The text covers tortillas (store-bought as well as how to make your own); how to roast fresh chiles and prepare dried ones; beans; rice; dry roasting tomatoes, onions, and garlic. There are general instructions on preparing meats for enchiladas, as well as information on assembling enchiladas.
But then come the recipes, divided according to the type of filling (pork, beef, poultry, seafood, dairy , vegetables). In a clear layout with plenty of white space, each recipe is divided into its component parts. Under "Ingredients" are listed For the Sauce, For the Fillling, For the assembly, and For the Garnish. Clear directions are then provided for preparing each of these.
If you can make it through the book without stopping to create an enchilada meal, I'll be surprised. What happened to me is that I was so taken by the two-page photo of "Enchiladas Banderas" that I decided I had to make them. I couldn't have chosen a more complicated dish, since "banderas" means flag, and the recipe consists of three different kinds of enchiladas--three different sauces, three different fillings. In the end, the three are arranged like a Mexican flag: green, white, and red. My version (see the photo at the top) was delicious, though perhaps not as professional-looking as the version in the book.
The filling for the red enchiladas was chorizo, augmented with green onions, tomato, and queso fresco, and the sauce was my favourite chili-based red enchilada sauce. The filling for the white enchiladas was queso anejo, which I made myself following the authors' directions (it takes a week to age, so plan ahead). The white sauce was a tomatillo sauce lightened with crema Mexicana (similar to creme fraiche). The filling for the green enchiladas was shredded chicken, with a tomatillo sauce.
I think I'll make it easy on myself next time and just make a single kind of enchilada rather than three at once. But boy! These Enchiladas Banderas were a terrific party dish! And there were leftovers!
If you're a lover of enchiladas, buy this book! There are some sixty different recipes--one delightful meal every week for a year and two months. What a good investment!