Thursday, January 17, 2013

Chicken, Black Bean, and Delicata Squash Enchiladas with Homemade Enchilada Sauce (gluten & dairy free)

Hello friends.  When I wrote this post back in December, we were in the middle of painting our new house.  The Holiday and move came on fast, so this post never made it to the publishing stage.  So, here it is.
   
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Home improvement takes so much time and energy, but it’s so fun to be part of the transformation.  I included some pictures below of our home improvement journey thus far.  But before I talk about this delicious recipe, I want to share with you this awesome paint I found on-lineand lucky for me it’s distributed at one of my favorite eco-home improvement stores in the nearby town of Berkeley.  I love this paint for many reasons, obviously because it’s zero VOC, is free of ozone depleting compounds, formaldehyde  reproductive toxins, and very, very low odor, but also because this company is founded and run by two amazing women, Virginia and Janie – I love nothing more than supporting female driven companies – and companies that are in-line with my eco-friendly, green lifestyle.  You can read about there story here.  Because of these smart, innovative women, folks like me can purchase non-toxic paint for their home and not only spare the air, but spare the health of loved ones.  I personally have enough against me with an auto-immune disease and severe chemical sensitivity.  I can’t tell you how happy and thankful I am for Virginia and Janieand Yolo Colorhouse!!  
Okay, on to the food.  I have been meaning to share this recipe with you since last fall.  So I’m glad to finally get it out there.  It’s a ridiculously easy recipe that you can make your own by adding a variety of ingredients.  And the star of the show is the delicious homemade enchilada sauce, that is so very easy, you will never purchased that canned stuff again!  In my ever evolving efforts to uphold a green, low-waste kitchen, I try to make what I can from scratch.  I hope you will give this recipe a try.  Enjoy! 

Ingredients:

For the filling
-2 medium cooked chicken breasts, cubed (or shredded)
-3 medium delicata squash, peeled, cubed, and roasted 
-2 cups prepared black beans (soaked and boiled, preferably)
-One bag room temperature Rudi’s Gluten Free plain Tortillas  

Enchilada sauce
-1 pound green anaheim peppers or gypsy peppers*
-1 medium yellow onion, chopped (about 1 1/4 cups)
-1 cup water
-1/2 teaspoon salt
-1/2 + 1/2 teaspoon garlic granules
-1/2 teaspoon cumin
-2 tablespoons oil
-Optional 1/4 – 1/2 teaspoon chili powder 

How To:
1.  Preheat oven to 400 degrees
2.  Wash and seed your peppers of choice, or what is seaonsal.  Chop peppers in half or quarters.  Add peppers and chopped onions to a small 9×9 glass Pyrex (or whatever you have on hand), and to that dish add 2 tablespoons oil and 1/2 teaspoon garlic granules.  Toss ingredients and roast for 30 minutes.  You want the peppers to start browning a little.  When the peppers are done roasting, remove from oven and set aside. The peppers can be made earlier in the day and set aside for several hours.  When you are ready to make the sauce, simply add the onions and peppers to a blender (I use a Vitamix), along with the 1 cup of water, 1/2 teaspoon salt, 1/2 teaspoon garlic granules, 1/2 teaspoon cumin and optional chili powder.  Blend until well incorporated. 

-I recommend roasting the chicken and squash at the same time with the peppers, in different dishes of course.  For the squash, I drizzle on some oil and add a few shakes of garlic granules.  For the chicken I drizzle on some oil, and add a few shakes of salt and garlic granules. Everything should be done at the same time.  Check the chicken’s internal temp at 30 minutes (needs to be at least 180 degrees), and check the squash for doneness.

3. After your finished with your roasting, turn oven down to 375
4.  Get your room temperature tortillas and start stuffin’.  I lay mine flat then add chicken, squash, and the black beans.  Don’t stuff too full…you want to be able to fold them at least.  Just roll closed, you don’t have to fold down the corners or anything fancy.  
5.  Place tortillas in a Pyrex.  You should fit 8 in there.  Don’t be shy, push them around a bit if you have to.

6.   Pour the enchilada sauce over the tortillas.  Bam, now you have some gnarly enchiladas going on.  Bake COVERED for 30 minutes (I cover with a stainless steel backing sheet – remember, I don’t use foil in my kitchen, so I get crafty and find other ways to cover dishes).  

7.  After 30 minutes, remove from oven, uncover, and allow to cool for about 20 minutes.

-Serve on a bed of fresh romaine lettuce along side fresh avocado, salsa of choice, cashew sour cream, chopped red onion, and a dash of hot sauce.

Notes:
*I have used three different peppers for the enchilada sauce.  Here’s the breakdown: (1) your basic green peppers yield a very bitter sauce and I do not recommend, (2) Anaheim can be a little spicy if you accidently get a seed in there, but using this variety will yield a more authentic tasting enchilada sauce – I definitely recommend anaheim, and (3) gypsy peppers yield a slightly sweet sauce, I also really love using these. 
*You can also use brown rice tortillas, but you will have to warm with with some oil so they become more pliable.  I have a few pictures of the brown rice tortillas batch below.

Delicata is by far my favorite squash
Gypsy peppers – so pretty
This batch is using Rudi’s Gluten Free plain Tortillas with gypsey pepper enchilada sauce:
This batch is using brown rice tortillas and anaheim peppers for the sauce:  
You can add a little dairy free cheese before you bake 
Anaheim peppers ready for roasting
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 Here are some pictures of our December home improvement:
Removed large fireplace to create more space in the kitchen and for the kitchen remodel in a few years…
Painting
Prepping floors for new solid wood non-toxic bamboo flooring
Ahhhh, it’s so freakin’ pretty
We had a temporary wall installed where the fireplace used to be.  This will come down when we do the kitchen remodel, but for now it allows us some much needed extra space in the kitchen.
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Labels: dairy free, fall cuisine, gluten free, main dish, winter cuisine.

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