Wednesday, November 17, 2010

5 Favorite Paleo Recipes So Far, Part 4: Daddy's TexMex Enchiladas

I live in the South. Mexican food is weird here. I'm from Texas. We know Mexican Food. And Tex-Mex, which is it's own delicious genre! My dad was a Fire Captain...which means when he wasn't busy saving lives, he was cooking for a crew of hungry men. Thankfully, that trickled over to the home front and he kept us well-fed!

These are my daddy's enchiladas...Paleo Style. I do dairy, but these are grain and legume free. I'm just going to give the basic recipe, but of course, use the best quality ingredients you can get your hands on. Our bodies and taste buds thank us!

Captain Jack's TexMex Enchiladas

Enchilada Sauce

3-4 Dried Ancho Chiles (pictured above), stems removed (you'll find these in the Hispanic foods section of the grocery)
About 1 cup Tomato Sauce (If you're not going to use organic or homemade, try Del Fuerte which is BPA free. It's in a little TetraPak in the same section with the chiles)
2 cups Water
1/3 - 1/2 Yellow Onion chopped
1 T Minced Garlic
Salt to taste (about 1/2 t)

Add all ingredients to a saucepan and bring to a boil. Simmer for 30-40 minutes, stirring occasionally. Cool slightly and puree and strain, or VitaMix the sauce when done cooking and skip the straining.

2 cups Chili Without Beans (Check the label if you're tempted to use canned, lots of it has grain and soy)
1 pound Ground Beef or Venison, cooked and seasoned to taste
2 -3 cups Finely Grated Cheese (Colby, Cheddar or "Mexican Blend")
Finely chopped onion

Here's the trick: Deli-Sliced chicken breast.
I've seen some Paleo-tortilla recipes online, but none looked like they could stand up to the filling and the baking, so here's my Paleo-friendly substitute. It may take some time to find a grain free version. Hormel Natural Choice Chicken Breast is nitrite, preservative, MSG and gluten free. The label says 0 carbs, but the ingredients list rice starch. Since I'm still eating (and blogging!) Paleo For the Rest of Us, that's gonna do today. I'm curious to see if I can find an even better version at Earthfare. The chicken has a mild flavor, but is sturdy enough to stand up to the enchilada goodness filling the inside.

Assembly and Cooking
Use 2-3 slices of chicken overlapped as your "tortilla." Spread 1 T of Enchilada Sauce and then 1 tablespoon chili on the sliced chicken. Sprinkle equal parts cooked ground beef/venison, and shredded cheese, about 1 tablespoon each. You can add the onions now, or sprinkle them on top at the end. Roll up in "enchilada fashion" and place seam down in a glass baking dish. I actually assemble mine in the baking dish, even though it gets crowded at the end. When your dish is full, mix the rest of the chili and enchilada sauce together and pour over the enchiladas, adding a little water if needed. Add remaining cheese, sprinkled on top. This makes 12-14 enchiladas, depending on how thick you make them. Bake at 350 for about 20 minutes (if you started with warm ingredients) until bubbly. These can be pre-assembled and refrigerated or frozen. No soggy tortillas! Don't you just love Paleo?

But what about the rice and beans? Well, what about them, right? Serve these with guacamole, sour cream and shredded lettuce tossed with lemon juice. That is a good meal. ¡Buen Provecho!

1 comment:

  1. The lunch meat is a clever idea! If you're ever interested in trying another paleo tortilla recipe, though:

    We ate these last night with fajita fixings--they tasted great, and totally stood up to the filling.