The enchilada. Nothing could be more delectable than a combination of meat, sauce and cheese in a steaming pile of mush. Tasty? Absolutely. Nutritious? Far from it. However, my love for Mexican cuisine coupled with my desire to increase my lifespan led to an enchilada recipe nutritious enough to consume on a daily basis, if you so desired (and I often do). This recipe is simple, versatile, quick and a huge crowd pleaser (one of my father’s favorite meals). My most recent batch of enchiladas used the leftover filling from the Mexican Tortilla Pie with enough for 6 full enchiladas. The basic recipe is a staple in my house but lots of customizations are listed below. For a vegetarian version, replace the meat with a can of black beans.
1lb cooked pork tenderloin, shredded (or other meat)
1 can (16oz) fat-free refried beans (or homemade or peanut butter)
1 (8oz) container fat-free sour cream
1 (8oz) package fat-free shredded cheddar cheese
10 corn or whole wheat tortillas
1 can enchilada sauce
1/2 onion, chopped
different meat (turkey tenderloin, ground beef/turkey, chicken breast)
1/2 cup chopped red bell pepper
1/2 can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 cup frozen sweet corn
1 jalapeno pepper, seeded, de-ribbed and chopped
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Over medium-high heat, spray a skillet with cooking spray and saute onions for 2-3 minutes. If meat is not cooked, add to skillet and cook until done. Drain the mixture if the meat produces grease.
2. Combine the refried beans, any optional ingredients and 2T enchilada sauce to the skillet, mix well and heat thoroughly. Add a few spoonfuls of sour cream to the mixture to thin it out. Spray 2 9×13 baking dishes with cooking spray and coat with a thin layer of enchilada sauce.
3. Place about 1/2 cup of the mixture down the center of a tortilla and fold the sides over (you can stuff them pretty full). Place seam-side down in the baking dish. Repeat until mixture is gone, tortillas are gone, or you run out of space to put them (you can compact them in the dish).
4. Coat the enchiladas with enchilada sauce until no dry spots remain. Generously cover cheese.
5. Cover with tin foil and bake for 15 minutes. Remove tin foil and bake for an additional 10 minutes.
Once the enchilada reaches my plate, I routinely dress it in the following fashion: sour cream, hot sauce and salsa. We are now ready for consumption: