Mushroom and spinach enchiladas: Enchiladas de champiñones y queso
In the Nahuatl language of the indigenous people of Central Mexico, the word for mushroom is the same as the word for meat, a testament to the mushroom's protein content and meaty texture. Use a variety of wild mushrooms if possible, but if not, cultivated criminis are nearly always available in Mexican supermarkets. Epazote goes wonderfully with mushrooms, but if the fresh herb is unavailable, substitute fresh cilantro in these tasty and nutritious mushroom and spinach enchiladas.
For the enchiladas:
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil or mild tasting olive oil
- ½ medium onion, chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 serrano chile, seeded and chopped
- ½ pound mushrooms, chopped
- ½ pound fresh spinach, washed and roughly chopped
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh epazote
- salt and pepper to taste
- 8 corn tortillas, soft fried or heated in the microwave
- crumbled queso fresco or farmers cheese for garnish
For the sauce:
- 6 cascabel or guajillo chiles, seeded and softened in hot water, drained
- 3 cloves garlic, unpeeled
- 1 medium onion, peeled and halved
- 1 pound tomatoes
- 1 cup chicken or vegetable broth
- ½ teaspoon ground cumin
- salt to taste
- 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
To make the enchiladas, heat the oil in a large sauté pan, add the onion and cook until just transparent. Add the garlic, chile and mushrooms and continue cooking until the mushrooms have rendered their liquid and browned. Add the spinach and epazote and cook until the spinach is just wilted. Add salt to taste.
Dip each softened tortilla in the enchilada sauce, divide the filling among them, roll and place on serving plates. Spoon remaining sauce over all and garnish with crumbled cheese. Serve with Mexican crema or crème fraiche. Serves 4.
For the sauce: Place drained, softened chiles in a blender. Roast onion, garlic and tomato on a dry comal or griddle until slightly blackened all over. Peel garlic. Add roasted vegetables, broth, cumin and salt to the blender and puree until smooth.
Heat the oil in a medium saucepan, add the pureed sauce and cook over medium heat until the sauce reaches desired consistency.
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