Homemade Verde Enchilada Sauce

My family loves ‘Taco Tuesday’.  We use this term loosely around here and it’s safe to assume it just means it’s anything Mexican food night!  One of our favorite dishes is Verde Enchiladas. For years I would throw a can of green enchilada sauce into the grocery cart and call it good.

In the recent year, I’ve been really challenging myself to look closer into labels and ingredients.  Then comparing those to recipes and asking myself what it would take to make the same product at home.  My mind has been blown.  So much simpler, so much easier, so much healthier.  And oh so much more rewarding.

Off to the store I went with a list of ingredients I collected from a variety of different recipes.  First on the list was a tomatillo.  First item on my agenda when I entered the produce department was to seek out the produce guy and quietly ask “excuse me, I’m looking for a tomatillo?”  He happily took me over to the green section of the department by peppers, cucumbers and lettuce.  Nestled in there were these little foreign looking objects that look like they are covered in… paper leaves?

Behold...the tomatillo

Behold…the tomatillo

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I needed between a pound and a pound and a half.  After a few times making this, I know 14-16 will get the job done.  Off they go into my basket. Luckily these guys are nestled by the peppers, so I pick a peck of peppers…just mostly the mild ones.  I’m a bit of a wimp when it comes to heat in my food, so I stick to the mild peppers.  You can make this as mild or as spicy as you like.  I like the flavors of Anaheim, poblano and pick smaller jalapeno and Serrano peppers. Then I find a nice bunch of organic cilantro if my plant at home isn’t cooperating.  (Ok, still working on that green thumb of mine).  The rest, I usually have in good supply at home: garlic, cumin and chicken stock.

Now your back at home and ready to start making your sauce!

Peel away all the husks and you’re left with a little sticky green looking tomato!  Wash those up and chop them in half.

Remove stem and innards of remaining peppers.  Play around with a variety of peppers according to what’s in season and your heat level preference.  I’m pretty low on the heat level scale, so I gravitate to the milder peppers, but if you like heat go for the peppers with heat.  Just don’t invite me for dinner!

Place all the peppers and tomatillos on a oiled baking sheet.  Toss in your peeled garlic.  (I like to give my garlic a good crack with the flat edge of my knife to start to release it’s awesome aroma).

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Roast for 20-30 minutes until skin is wrinkled and slightly charred.  An alternate is to broil them on low for the last 10 minutes.  Remove and cool.

Now you’re ready to make this an official sauce!  Place contents of baking pan into a blender, Vitamix or food processor.  Add 1/4 cup cilantro and 1/2 TBSP cumin.  Add 1/2 – 2 cups chicken stock.  Blend until smooth.

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This goes great in a pan of chicken or pork enchiladas.  Keep following me and watch out for an upcoming post (my Recipe/menu Monday) for a quick and easy weekday version of Skillet Enchiladas with Verde Enchilada Sauce!

Homemade Verde Sauce

A delicious homemade version of your favorite green enchilada sauce.

Source: livingohsopeachy.com

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 pound tomatillos
  • 1-2 Anaheim or poblano peppers (both fairly mild)
  • 1-2 jalapeno peppers (medium to hot, depending on age. If you like heat, look for more reddish peppers and white lines)
  • 1-2 Serrano peppers (medium to hot)
  • 3-4 garlic cloves1/4 cup cilantro, chopped
  • 1/2 TBSP cumin
  • 2 Cups Chicken Stock

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350°.
  2. Remove husks from tomatillos. Rinse and cut in half.
  3. Cut and remove stems and innards of all other peppers.
  4. Place tomatillos and peppers on baking sheet skin side up. Drizzle sheet with oil.
  5. Peel garlic and add to baking sheet.
  6. Roast for 20-30 minutes until skin is wrinkled and slightly charred. An alternate is to broil them on low for the last 10 minutes.
  7. Remove and let cool.
  8. Add peppers and garlic to food processor, blender or Vitamix.
  9. Add cilantro, cumin and chicken stock. Add salt and pepper according to taste based on how salted your stock is.
  10. Blend until well mixed.

 

Brussels Sprouts with Bacon, Balsamic Glaze and Chèvre

Last month in October, my husband and I attended the Maroon 5 concert (amazing show!).  We went for dinner and drinks before the show.  After perusing the menu, our eyes instantly went to an appetizer ‘Roasted Brussels Sprouts’.  Every bite was divine, and we savored every flavor.  My husband exclaimed, “you need to make this at home!” as we did all but lick the plate clean. (Don’t judge!)

I realized how simple the ingredient list was: Brussles, bacon, balsamic and goat cheese.

We planted some Brussles in the back yard late spring, but they are just too little to satisfy our portion size at the moment so off I went to the market.  There I found beautiful stocks of these sweet little cabbage looking veggies!  Next, on to the bacon, because everything is better with bacon.  I prefer uncured bacon.

Here’s why:  uncured bacon is cured with just salt.  NO nitrites.  Nitrites are an additive used to preserve the color, flavor and shelf life.  It is found naturally in many foods like vegetables, but loaded into processed meats.  However, when nitrites are exposed to high heat (like we like our meats!), they turn into a compound that is a potent carcinogen (Read more about nitrites here).  Lucky, you can search for better options like uncured and nitrite-free bacon.  Just read those labels! If in doubt, cook it slow and low!

Back to the food…and the bacon.

Preheat oven to 350°.  Cut bacon into bite size chunks and place on baking sheet.  When oven is ready, cook bacon 10 – 15 minutes until it’s done to your likeness.  I prefer it medium for this dish.  Not to limp and not too crisp.  Check after 8 minutes or so as bacon can quickly go from just right to singed in no time.  When bacon is done, crank oven up to 400° for roasting the Brussels Sprouts.

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While oven is heating, wash those sprouts and remove any outer leaves that just don’t muster up.  Next, cut them in half.  Place into a bowl and drizzle with Olive Oil.  Salt and pepper and mix until well combined.

stalk

sprouts

Now time to roast the sprouts!  Lay them on a baking sheet (you know what? I like putting them on the sheet after the bacon.  Why not use all that bacon goodness to roast your veggies in?  Plus, just one pan to clean up.  Winning!)  Bake for 20-30 minutes, checking often.  Even if they look like they are crispy on the outside and done, take a bite to make sure they are not too firm.

While the sprouts are roasting, let’s make our balsamic glaze!  This is so simple.  I know specialty stores sell Balsamic Glaze and I honestly haven’t looked at a label, but this is so simple, you’ve got this on your own!  Heat up 1/2 -3/4 cup of balsamic vinegar in a pan to boiling.  Once boiling, reduce to a simmer until it reduces by half, about 15-20 minutes.  Allow too cool.  Yep, that’s it!  OK, technically this isn’t all “glazy”, but it’s straight up real food and real delicious!  If you have the need to make it sticky sweet, you can add 1-2 TBSP sugar.  I won’t tell. 

The bacon is done, the sprouts are done and your balsamic reduction is done.  Toss together in a bowl.

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Now all that is missing is the cheese.  My go-to cheese for this dish is goat cheese.  I love the creamy buttery flavor of Chèvre .  It’s soft and will become warm 
Combine bacon, Brussels Sprouts and sauce to a bowl. Mix until combine. Place in serving bowl and add cheese.

Brussels Sprouts with Bacon, Balsamic Glaze and Chèvre

  • Servings: 4-6
  • Print

A savory appetizer.

Source: livingohsopeachy.com

Ingredients

1 pound Brussels Sprouts (1/2 stalk), trimmed and halved
4-6 slices thick cut uncured bacon
1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
2-3 TBSP goat cheese

Directions

  1. Heat oven to 350°. Chop bacon into large bite sizes. Place on baking sheet covered with aluminum foil. Bake until medium, about 10-15 minutes.
  2. While bacon is cooking, wash and clean Brussels Sprouts. Trim and halve. Place in mixing bowl and olive oil and salt and pepper to coat.
  3. Once bacon is done adjust oven temperature to 400°, remove bacon and place on paper town to drain.
  4. Add sprouts to baking pan. Roast until golden brown and lightly crispy, about 20-25 minutes.
  5. While sprouts are roasting, make the balsamic glaze.
  6. In a small sauce pan, add 1/2 cup – 3/4 cup of balsamic vinegar to pan. Bring to boil, then simmer 15-20 minutes until sauce thickens.
  7. If desired, add 1-2 TBSP sugar for a sweeter, thicker glaze.
    Combine bacon, Brussels Sprouts and sauce to a bowl. Mix until combine. For low carb, use a substitute like Swerve.
  8. Place in serving bowl and add cheese.

Welcome!

Well friends…here I go!  I’m starting a blog.  I hope you will enjoy Living Oh So Peachy as much as I do.

So, what’s it going to be all about?

Well, I’m a wife and a mom.  Like so many of you, I spend a lot of time planning and keeping this household functioning.  It would all fall apart without us, right? 🙂 Not everything is oh so loving about it, but it’s all about making the best of what we have…and loving what we have and what we have created for ourselves.  To me, it’s creating my life to get to that happy place of everything is just “oh so peachy”!

I plan on sharing with you ideas that I hope will inspire you. I love creating and I love sharing ideas with friends.  I love discovering a new food flavor or project idea and the first thing I think of is “Oh, I have to share this”.  This will be a place I can bring it all together.

I will share good eats that I love making that I discovered on my journey of reducing processed foods in our family diet.  Many of them are long time recipes, just adapted with healthier real food choices.

I will share fun sips for girls night out (or in!), party time, cozy night in with your love or that occasion when you can indulge in some day drinkin’!

I will share simple ideas that you can include in your daily routine of house cleaning, family planning and making our house feel like your home.

Cheers to this adventure of Living Oh So Peachy!

~Angie

Read more about me here.

 

 

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