Posts on January 2015

I Got This

14It is no secret that I haven’t really ventured outside of my cooking comfort zone since the kale salad fail. My confidence took a serious hit, but when I saw the OSG recipe for Enchilada Casserole I thought, ‘How hard could it be to cut up some peppers and toss a can of beans into a baking dish?’ The answer: not super hard. Even with having to make the enchilada sauce (and homemade taco seasoning!), it was a pretty painless endeavor. Perhaps my new kraken-clad cutting board had something to do with it. Best Christmas gift everrrrrrr.

Note to self: buy a whisk. Buy a whisk so that you will be prepared for the the next time you make a sauce using a recipe that mentions the word ‘whisk’ nine times. And buy a whisk because it is especially ridiculous that you somehow have a cooking blog and yet do not own a whisk.

Even though I didn’t use a whisk (let it be known that I keep typing ‘whiskey’…), doubled the onion powder because I own zero garlic powder and accidentally bought one plain tomato paste and one garlic herb tomato paste, the sauce came out pretty good.

Next up: cutting vegetables. The last two times I’ve cut vegetables, I thought to myself, ‘I really need to Google how to do this because there is no way I am doing this right.’ Real paddle. However, I decided to forgo the Google search for the time being and seek answers to a more pressing question:

scallionsPerfect.

Scallions, done. Jalapeño, done. Onions, done.

I cut the top off my gorgeous yellow pepper only to reveal what looked like several yellow pepper fetuses growing inside. I was immediately repulsed.

5But chopped it anyway.

4Once the veggies were done sautéing, it occurred to me that I didn’t peel any of the stickers off any of the peppers. I promptly decided it was OK to ingest a small amount of melted plastic as part of my meal and continued to combine ingredients, adding the beans and the enchilada sauce like the recipe said.

At this point, my biggest pan is feeling pretty small.

2I stirred slowly and purposefully, keeping most of the contents in the pan. Success! Except that the next step called for adding the pasta and cheese.

Right.

Remember that time I made enchilada casserole in a giant stockpot?

Because I do.

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10I need bigger pans. Or a saute pan. Or to hire a personal chef.

Still, the stockpot was a genius move.

I used veggie pasta because #veggies but also because I’m pretty sure that 85% (or roughly 17/20) of the items consumed during my trip to SF last week were bread-related products. Veggie pasta seemed like the best alternative until my brilliant girlfriend one-upped me by substituting quinoa. She is the smartest.

I emptied the contents of the pot into a baking dish that was way too big for the amount of casserole happening and covered the whole thing with an entire bag of cheese (lactose what?).

8Contrary to popular belief, setting timers is not for losers. I set a timer and let that puppy cook until the top turned golden brown.

The verdict? Pretty damn good. Though I think I’ll go with quinoa next time.

dish

Enchiloction

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Short post today because I actually managed to make a recipe without any glaring failures!

I wanted to make the Enchilada Casserole recipe from OSG, but had seen recipes for farro enchiladas and quinoa enchiladas on Pinterest and hoped I could sort of combine them all together into a quinoa enchilada casserole situation.

I’m making this recipe for Lunch Club. Bridget’s meal on Thursday was mushroom enchiladas with green sauce. I had already bought the ingredients for this, so hopefully the Club rrreallly likes enchiladas.

And hopefully mine win. Not that it’s a contest.  Not that I’m competitive.  Ever.

The recipe calls for you to make the enchilada sauce first. Easy enough, right? These spices are so pretty! Then you just simmer. Totally fine.

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Except if you’re me and have ADD and forget to stir. Then you get burnt enchilada sauce.

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Luckily, it wasn’t tooooo burnt, and upon some bromate taste tests was informed that it was just “extra smoky.”

Max has decided that I am making an “Enchiloction,” or enchilada concoction.   He informed me that, he’s “not even hungry and that smells delicious,” which I take as a good sign.

I only have one can of tomato paste when the recipe calls for two because reading is hard. I’ve already used the correct quantities of spices, but only have one can of paste. Oh well. Maybe I’m making a new version of the recipe that’s extra spicy. I use one can of paste and 1 cup water and it’s actually pretty GOOD!

I chop up the onions and then the peppers. I know you MUST have also bought one yellow, one red, and one orange pepper just for aesthetic appeal.

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I realize I’ve always made up how to cut a pepper, so I google it to find out if I’ve been doing it right. Not entirely, but kind of close. It seems like if you get the seeds and stem off, you’re doing pretty well.

How to cut a bell pepper

Also, who knew that if you leave a wooden spoon on a hot pan it will actually burn? It does smell kind of good though….

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I make the quinoa separately and put it in with the veggie mix, just like the recipe says to do with the pasta.

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I douse the mixture with cheese (real cheese, not vegan cheese… just because I had it on hand, not for any other reason).

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Setting a timer is for losers! Even though I forget to set one, I miraculously check in before it burns.  It’s delicious.

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This blog is a lot more exciting when I fuck things up!