Friday, November 17, 2006

Making Enchiladas - A Photo Essay

Every year at Christmastime my mother-in-law makes enchiladas using an old family recipe and a cast-iron skillet her grandfather carried over the border from Mexico. This year she asked if I would like to help her make them and I jumped at the chance.

The enchiladas start with homemade flour tortillas:

... that my MIL makes using, among other things, flour and bacon fat. This is where the old cast iron skillet comes in - she uses it to blister and cook the tortillas.

Next up is finely diced yellow onion:

... that goes inside the enchiladas raw so it retains its crunch. It was my job to cut the onions while my MIL cooked the ground beef:

... until it was no longer pink. Then we drained off the fat and she added:

... a sprinkling of chili powder, 1 cup of enchilada sauce and 1/2 cup of shredded mozzarella cheese for each pound of ground beef.

The resulting mixture:

... is then allowed to cool a bit before we set up the assembly line.

... with the disposable baking pans coated lightly with oil, the beef mixture, the bowl of minced onion and a pie plate with more enchilada sauce for dipping the tortillas

To assemble the enchiladas my MIL starts by coating a tortilla with enchilada sauce:

... then she cups the tortilla in her hand and fills it with the beef mixture:

... then she adds a sprinkling of minced onion:

... and folds it over and places it seam side down in the oiled baking pan:

Six enchiladas fit in one pan:

... and once all six are rolled, the enchiladas are coated with some more sauce and mozzarella cheese and then baked in a 350-degree oven for 15 minutes so the cheese can melt:

My MIL then freezes the trays of enchiladas and distributes them at Christmastime to her kids and their families.
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  1. *Drool Drool Drool*

    I can see myself making this for sure. But with store bought tortillas. :)

  2. They are unlike any other enchiladas I've ever had but they are quite good. And pretty easy (if you don't make your own tortillas). They are especially good with a nice dollop of sour cream. :)

  3. Sour cream is a gift from God.

  4. Do you know how much I cannot stand that Mark does not like enchiladas? This recipe looks devine. I WISH I COULD TRY IT but my husband has to be STUBBORN.

  5. It really stinks that he isn't a huge fan of Mexican food. You could always make a really small batch of enchiladas just for yourself. It's not hard and then you can satisfy your craving without forcing them down Mark's throat. :)


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