Mexican food is my husband’s favourite food (after pizza). He loves all the trimmings and the meal is not complete for him unless all the elements are there. He wants the spice, the salsa the beans, the sour cream, guac and the grease that drips out of a burrito. Now my Mexican meals are missing the majority of those things so it has taken me countless dinners to tweak my recipe to win him over with my Mexican food. Mexican food is not only his love but also mine and when I make this meal it feels like I have eaten a ‘carbie’ meal, but in fact it is a very healthy and balanced meal.
We have recently moved to San Francisco where Mexican food is like the stable food here, and you are never more than 5 minutes walk from a Mexican restaurant. So creating a great Mexican meal has been even more on my agenda with all of the inspiration around. So here a my Collard Enchiladas totally delicious.
servings: 4, time: 45 minutes
8 large collard leaves
Tomato red pepper filling (recipe below)
Quinoa filling (recipe below)
Black bean topping (recipe below)
Lentil topping (recipe below)
Avocado topping (recipe below)
Optional extra toppings: Crushed macadamia nuts, vegan cheese, or coriander.
* I use a dry cup measurer for all my measuring (liquid and dry)
1 large baking dish 15 x 10 inch
1) Wash the collard leaves, and if you can’t find collard use spring greens, Swiss chard or even large kale leaves.
2) Place around 3-4 tbs of the tomato red pepper filling and 2-3 tbs of the quinoa filling on each leaf and roll the leaf around the filling. Then place the roll in the baking dish − repeat for each leaf.
3) Once all the leaves are rolled in the dish, spoon the lentil and black bean topping evenly over the top.
4) Bake in oven 180 degrees for 10 minutes, or 15-20 minutes if all the toppings and fillings have gone cold. Optional extras: grated macadamia nuts or vegan cheese on top of the enchiladas before placing in the oven to get a little grilled cheese feel.
5) Then before serving dollop the avocado topping over the top.
Tomato red pepper filling:
2 red peppers
3 cups tinned chopped tomatoes (around 2 x 400 g tins)
½ cup tomato puree
½ tsp ground cumin
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp ground coriander
2 tsp paprika
½ tsp pink himalayan salt
2- 4 tsp chili paste (depending on how spicy you like your food)
½ cup water
½ cup chickpeas
1) Slice the red pepper into 1-cm wide long strips and place in pan with a dash of oil. On medium heat cook for 6 minutes (keep moving the peppers to avoid them burning) until the peppers are cooked, but still retaining a crunch.
2) In a pot add all the rest of the ingredients except the red peppers and chickpeas.
3) Bring the pot to a simmer and leave with the lid off (stirring occasionally) for 15 minutes, then add the peppers and chickpeas and simmer for 10 minutes more, now with the lid on.
4) Leave to one side until you’re ready to roll your enchiladas.
½ cup of quinoa
¼ tsp salt
2 tbs tomato puree
1 tsp chili paste
1) Rinse the quinoa and place in a pot with ¼ tsp salt and 1 cup + 2 tbs of water.
2) Bring to the boil and boil for 15- 18 minutes until there is no remaining water.
3) Remove from the heat but leave the lid on for 5 minutes.
4) Mix the rest of the ingredients together.
5) Leave to one side until you’re ready to roll your enchiladas.
Black Bean topping:
1 tin of black beans
½ tsp of salt
1) Drain the black beans of some (not all) of their excess juices.
2) Put the black beans in a pot with the salt and boil for 10 minutes.
3) Remove from the heat until you’re ready to reheat the beans.
4) It is the reheating of the beans that helps them have the nice mushy texture. Reheat for 3-5 minutes.
5) Leave to one side until you’re ready to make your enchiladas.
1 tin of brown lentils
3 tbs tomato puree
1 tsp chili paste
1) Drain the tin of brown lentils and put in a pot with the puree and chili paste.
2) Cook and stir for 5 minutes until warm and the lentils have gone slightly mushy.
3) Leave to one side until you’re ready to make your enchiladas.
3 ripe avocados
1 ½ limes (around 2 ½ tbs of lime juice)
½ cup chopped cherry tomatoes
2 tbs chopped coriander
¼-½ tsp salt
1) Cut the avocados in half and scoop out the flesh into medium- sized bowl (keep the stones on the side).
2) Juice the limes (keeping the flesh of the lime that sticks to your juicer and putting this in as well) and add to the avocado.
3) Add the chopped coriander and cherry tomatoes and salt (to your taste), and using a fork lightly mix the ingredients together, cutting the avocado as you go. I like my guacamole to have medium-size lumps of avocado rather than a puree consistency so I don’t over mix the guacamole.
4) Then place the stones back in the guacamole until you are ready to eat it, as this and the lime stops the avocado from going brown. Remove the stones before you serve.