Thursday, November 5, 2009

Food Spotlight: Mexico; Recipe: Steak Enchiladas and Guacamole with Goat Cheese

I love to cook Mexican cuisine at home. While I have had some fantastic meals at Mexican restaurants, I find that I often feel overburdened with the grease and oil that is unfortunately overused at many Mexican-American restaurants. I also can't seem to refuse their margaritas, a very unhealthy, Americanized way to drink Tequila. (Mexicans drink it straight up!) Real Mexican food is actually quite healthy, featuring a variety of vegetables, spices and fresh ingredients. My sister Lisa studied in Guadalajara, Mexico, and her photos of "real" Mexican food make me excited to visit someday! Here are a few delicious meals that she enjoyed during her travels, followed by my best shot at enchiladas and guacamole.

Meat, quesadillas, chile relleno, rice, beans, guacamole and salad. What a beautiful meal!

Chilaquiles- Fried eggs over tortilla strips with salsa and cheese. A delicious breakfast! 

Rich chocolate Mole with stewed meat, served with rice and fresh avocado.

Enchiladas with rice and chicken. Look at that delicious queso fresco on top! Mmmm mmm!

Meat with roasted tomatoes, caramelized onions, beans and avocado. Fantastic wrapped up in a fresh tortilla!

Cactus- A Mexican specialty. (Don't try this at home!)

Ribs, beans, rice, salad, french fries and avocado- $4!


Recipe Spotlight: Steak Enchiladas and Guacamole
Those pictures of beautiful, fresh Mexican food made me hungry, so I made a little Mexican feast for two at home. These recipes are incredibly easy, and while they may not be authentic, they are delicious and good for you. Enjoy a little Latin flavor tonight- tequila is optional! Recipes by Sarah Saubert

Steak Enchiladas
Tortillas filled with fresh and delicious flavors. Just as good with chicken or vegetarian!
Serves 2-3

5-6 medium-size flour tortillas
1/2 c. enchilada sauce
1 green pepper, diced
1/2 onion, diced
1 small zucchini, diced (optional)
1/2 cup refried beans (optional)
Shredded cheese (I used Pepper Jack and Cheddar)
8-10 oz. flank steak or 2 chicken breasts, cooked and cut into small pieces
1/2 tsp. Cumin
1/2 tsp. Paprika (optional)
Salt and Pepper
1 tblsp. olive oil

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Heat olive oil in medium skillet over medium-high heat. Add onions, peppers, and zucchini, sprinkle with salt, cumin and paprika, and sautee for 5 minutes until softened. Remove from heat.

Spread enchilada sauce over large plate. Dip both sides of each tortilla in sauce until lightly coated. Fill tortillas with meat, sauteed veggies, a spoonful of refried beans, and some shredded cheese. Roll up and place in 8x8 casserole dish. When all tortillas are in dish top with extra cheese and enchilada sauce. (I also topped mine with some salsa verde.) Cover with foil and bake in oven for 15 minutes, then remove foil and bake an additional 10 minutes until lightly browned and bubbling. Serve with chips, guacamole, salsa and sour cream.

Everyone loves guacamole, and it is so fun to make and serve at home! I sometimes add goat cheese to the avocado, and have included it in the recipe below. It adds a tangy creaminess that is oh so yummy. The guacamole is delicious without it, though, and is so easy to make you can have it every night!

Guacamole with Goat Cheese
Creamy avocado and tangy goat cheese make an amazing side!

Serves 2

1 avocado
2 oz. goat cheese
2 tblsp. red onion, diced
1/2 tomato, diced
1 tbslp. fresh lime juice (about half a lime)
Dash Worcestershire sauce (optional)

Cut avocado in half and remove pit by striking with a knife. Scoop out flesh into a bowl. Add goat cheese and lime juice and mash with the back of a fork until combined. Stir in onion, tomato, and a dash of Worstershire sauce. Sprinkle with salt and serve with tortilla chips.

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