From Scratch

A while back I finally sat down and made enchilada sauce from scratch. I’ve wanted to do this for years but never got around to it. This goes for a lot of things ‘from scratch’. I cook a lot of stuff at home and try not to rely on store bought portions of recipes, but sometimes it’s just easier. Canned sauces, tins of curry paste, pre-mixed curry powder. I suppose to a lot of folks cooking anything at home means ‘from scratch’ but to me it means you started out with identifiable single ingredients. Someday I’d love to make homemade curry pastes and powders. Maybe seeing how easy and tasty the enchilada sauce turned out will inspire me. But for now I’m happy with my sauce.

I’m trying to recall now, but I think this was based on the recipe in How to Cook Everything Vegetarian. I liked it a lot but would like to use a mix of peppers next time, maybe anchos, guajillos, and New Mexico chiles.

Enchilada Sauce

4 dried ancho peppers
1 tbsp. oil
1 med. onion
3 cloves garlic
15 oz. can of roasted diced tomatoes
1 1/2 tsp. sugar
salt and pepper
1/4 c. fresh cilantro, chopped

Remove seeds and stems from peppers and cover with boiling water. Heat oil in a saucepan, add onion and cook for several minutes, until it begins to color. Add garlic. Mince soaked peppers and add to onion, if it seems dry add some of the soaking water. Cook for a couple minutes then add the tomatoes, sugar, salt, and pepper. Cook for 15-20 minutes, until it has thickened. Add cilantro and take off heat. When slightly cooled run through a blender or food processor.

This made enough for one 9×13 pan of enchiladas. The recipe I used for the unpictured final product was from the Fall 2011 Penzey’s catalog, a recipe submitted by Dane Kuttler. I was intrigued when I first saw the recipe because you boil the sweet potatoes in vinegar and soy sauce. I just had to try it. I usually make up my own filling as I go along but it usually includes sweet potatoes, can of black beans, can of diced tomatoes, and spices.  For this I tried to stick with the recipe but clearly changed a few things for vegan and health reasons.

Sweet Potato Black Bean Enchiladas

5-6 ww flour tortillas
2 large sweet potatoes, peeled if desired
1/4 c. soy sauce
1/3 c. apple cider vinegar
1 tbsp. canola oil
1 medium onion, diced
4 cloves garlic, chopped
2 tsp. ground cumin
1 tsp. ancho chili powder
1 15-oz. can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 c. Daiya vegan cheddar cheese, divided
1 batch enchilada sauce

Preheat oven to 375ºF.
Wash and chop sweet potatoes into bite sized pieces. Put the potatoes, soy sauce, and vinegar into a medium saucepan, cover with a lid, and boil until potatoes are soft and liquid is mostly absorbed, about 20-30 minutes.

Meanwhile, heat oil in a saute pan over medium heat. Saute onion, garlic, cumin, and ancho until fragrant, be careful not to burn the garlic. Add the black beans and a little water or more vinegar and turn heat. Let it warm through then take off heat.

When the potatoes are done slightly mash then, then mix the black bean mixture and potatoes together. Add 2/3 c. vegan cheese and mix in. Put a third of the enchilada sauce in the bottom of a 9×13 pan. Fill the tortillas with a few good spoonfuls of filling and place seam down in pan. Continue until pan is full. Spread the rest of the enchilada sauce over the top and sprinkle on the rest of the cheese. Bake for 25 minutes, or until cheese is melted and the sauce is slightly bubbling around the edges of the pan. Cool slightly and enjoy.


2 thoughts on “From Scratch

  1. I have never made sauce from scratch either.I already take forever to make enchiladas, so I take a shortcut there. Maybe I can do it a day ahead and it won’t be as much work on “assembly” day.

  2. This sounds delicicious! I made the potato and kale enchiladas from Veganomicon last night and those were also really good.

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