Thursday, February 17, 2011

Black Bean, Brown Rice, Roasted Butternut Squash and Kale Green Chile Enchiladas with Cumin-Lime Yogurt Crema

Tick-tock. Tick-tock. It was early December and then... in the blink of an eye... it was no longer.

Both Claus and Cupid have come and gone, and with them a whirlwind of activity... much of the reason why time has stood so still in this little space.

The other is the simple fact that I've gathered much of what I need to complete the project for which this space was created and my attention has waned. Blogging is a business for many... adeptly and creatively accomplished by a large number of folks. For me, it's simply been a great deal of fun. And now, with the objective of my efforts coming to fruition, my visits have definitely ebbed.

For now, however, it seems only obvious that one needs to share when that which is cheesey, creamy, flavorful, healthy, easy, satisfying, and comforting... is found.


And so... I offer up these enchiladas. They happen to be my new favorite (enchilada, that is). And... they include my new favorite crush food... kale -- the perfect "super" food in every sense of the word. Not only is it great for you, it works well in so many dishes.

The inspiration for these enchiladas was a rice and veggie dish we had several months ago at one of our favorite brew pubs. The doggie bag leftovers from that night went into enchiladas the next night... and a new dish was born.


The great thing about this little concoction is that you can go in any number of different directions and it would be just as good. Roasted mixed veggies instead of roasted butternut squash. Delicata squash if you want it a bit sweeter. Quinoa instead of brown rice. Kidney beans instead of black. You get the drift.

And, like so many dishes I like to make, this one has great morphing capabilities. The filling is so good on its very own... a la brewpub variety... for a great vegan option. And, I'm thinking it could even be processed with a few other binding ingredients for a great veggie burger.




So... enjoy. Don't let too much time tick... tick... tick... by before giving these a try.


Black Bean, Brown Rice, Roasted Butternut Squash and Kale
Green Chile Enchiladas with Cumin-Lime Yogurt Crema
Makes 8 enchiladas (with leftover filling!)


Going with the way I typically cook, I'm offering approximations for some of the ingredients in these enchiladas, allowing you to go heavier on the items you like the best... to craft the flavor that most appeals to you.

8 white corn tortillas
1 large can green chile enchilada sauce (at least 20 ounces)
1 to 2 cups shredded cheddar/jack cheese mix
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 to 2 cups cooked brown rice
2 cups diced roasted butternut squash
1/2 to 1 cup diced red onion
1 jalapeño, minced (seeds removed)
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 to 3 cups chopped fresh lacinato kale (spines removed)
2 cups cooked black beans (if using canned, rinsed and drained)
1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
1/4 cup sliced black olives (one small can, drained)
1 fresh lime
3/4 to 1 cup plain Greek-style yogurt
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
salt and pepper, to taste

1. Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add onion and jalapeño; cook until just softened, about 1 minute. Add garlic; continue to cook for another 30 seconds to 1 minute. Add kale; cook until just wilted a bit, about 1 minute. Add in black beans. Remove from heat until squash and rice are cooked. (note: diced squash, tossed with a little olive oil, salt and pepper will take approximately 30 to 45 minutes to roast in a 400 degrees F oven.)

2. Add roasted squash and cooked rice to kale mixture; return to medium high heat. Drizzle juice from half of fresh lime. Continue to cook until heated through. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Set aside.

3. In a small bowl, mix yogurt, cumin, juice from remaining half of lime, and salt and pepper, to taste. Set aside.

4. Spoon approximately 1/3 to 1/4 cup of rice/bean mixture into each of the eight corn tortillas (warm tortillas in microwave, or over stovetop flame to soften). Drizzle approximately one teaspoon of crema atop each portioned filling and roll up each tortilla. Place filled and rolled tortillas, seam-side down, in a large baking dish. Pour enchilada sauce over rolled tortillas. Sprinkle with cheese and place in a 350 degrees F. oven for approximately 45 minutes, until bubbly and slightly golden. Serve immediately with a drizzle of crema over top.

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