Enchilada Casserole

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Ah it’s back to beans for our family. With all the beans we’ve had lately, I think I’ve flushed everything from our trip out of my system. You’re probably sitting there making a face and saying “TMI!” HA! We don’t shy away from bodily functions in our family.

Last night we had the Naughty & Nice Vegan Enchilada Casserole from Oh She Glows. This recipe is nice because it’s easy to make, and it’s homemade but it’ll make you feel naughty because you’ll be stuffed at the end. You make the taco seasoning and the enchilada sauce from scratch. I don’t know about you, but I LOVE that. It’s especially good for me because I’ve got to watch what the little one and myself eat. Besides, have you ever looked at the ingredients on some of the foods out there?

For instance, when I was home the Hubs and I went to pick up some fries for supper. We were looking for a plain bag of frozen fries that didn’t have milk in it! Milk in fries? Yeah, that’s exactly what I thought. Actually, it was more like “WTF?!” We finally found a bag of Ore Ida fries that didn’t have any milk and was gluten-free, but instead of maybe five ingredients there were 11+. That’s just for french fries!! Fries people! There’s not supposed to be anything other than potatoes, salt, vegetable oil, and maybe one or two other ingredients listed. HOLY! I’m still shocked at that. I also think it’s because the  food industry standards are different here in Canada. But that made me think “was I eating this growing up?!”

So, with the taco seasoning, there’s only nine ingredients and you know what every single one of them are. The link in the recipe is pretty good in that it talks about all the junk that food companies add. One piece of advice here: if you’re making this dish for someone who doesn’t like spicy stuff, maybe tone down on the chili powder. I think I only added half. Also, you’ll end up with more than what you need for the recipe, but it’s good to have the rest in the spice cabinet for another occasion.

The same goes for the enchilada sauce. She says to add 2 tbsp of chili powder but I only added 1 and then a little bit more. The enchilada sauce doesn’t take long to make at all. Again, you will end up with more than what you need but it’s good to have on hand.

Because we had pasta the other night, the Hubs wanted to have rice. So, the construction of this dish for us last night went a bit different. However, everything else was the same.

She says to use 1 red onion, but I had a MASSIVE one so I only used half of it. Then go on and chop up your bell peppers. Bell peppers don’t look amazing (other than the bright colors) and don’t really look like peppers, but they are high in vitamin C and antioxidants.

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Then you go ahead and sauté them all for a little bit. Next, you’ll add your homemade taco seasoning, enchilada sauce, and black beans.

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Now, this is where I deviated from the recipe. Because the Hubs wanted rice, I let the mix simmer for a bit. I ended up having to add a 1/2 cup of water to thin it out some. There was no rhyme or reason why it ended up being 1/2 cup of water. It was just that the 1/2 measuring cup was there and that’s what I grabbed. I let it simmer while the rice was cooking.

If you’re cooking with pasta, you’ll follow the recipe as she states and then put your casserole in the oven to bake. I didn’t have to bake mine and I don’t know why I didn’t think of it before. You know how you get lazy sometimes and read a recipe that says to bake everything even though everything is already cooked? And how you’ve basically assembled everything and then you think “do I really need to bake this?” Yeah, that’s me sometimes. I’ve always thought “why do I have to bake this?” Not baking worked out perfect because the Hubs hates Daiya cheese (GASP!). By not baking, I didn’t eliminate an extra step. By the time the rice was done, the casserole would’ve baked in the oven around the same time. So, I guess you have to decide how your’e feeling that day.

When the rice was done, I just scooped the rice into the pot and mixed everything together. I only served Daiya cheese on top of mine and the little one’s dishes, and I also sliced up an avocado for the little one and myself to have. It should probably be called enchilada rice mix in my case. Either way, it was YUH-MEE!! It was plain good. The little one ate his and I thought he would be picky because the peppers and red onion weren’t exactly chopped up in little pieces. The Hubs had seconds and even took some to lunch to show off to his meat-eating co-workers who felt sorry for him for having falafels for lunch the other day. I wish I could be there and say “IN YOUR FACE!” Ok. That’s off my chest now.

If you’re in the mood for a Mexican-themed dish, then this is your jam. I don’t recommend using TVP or a meat substitute with this. This dish is perfect the way it is. You won’t miss the meat and you’ll be satisfyingly full afterwards as well. Keep this recipe bookmarked on your phone, tablet, or computer just so you’ll have the homemade taco seasoning and enchilada sauce recipes. Make those when you have a party or BBQ to go to next time!

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