I had COVID a little over a month ago, and I was mostly confined to my aunt's guest room for five days. I ended up staying at my aunt's house for a week longer than I anticipated, so once I got back to Pittsburgh I was itching to cook again. I actually only had a week before having to go back to my aunt's house again, but now, NOW, I'm back in my apartment, and I am doing lots of cooking.
I'm trying to remember why I decided to make enchiladas, because I'm not the biggest fan of them. I think I had tortillas in the fridge from a while ago. I also had some of that dry pulled pork that came from a pork loin. Yup, that's why. I wanted to use the rest of that.
I decided to try this vegan black bean and avocado enchilada recipe from Budget Bytes, but of course I substituted the corn for pork in it which made it very much not vegan anymore.
But who cares! I wasn't looking for a vegan recipe. I was looking for an enchilada recipe. And I have to say that I was pleasantly surprised by how this turned out. After I had prepared the filling, I took a bite and I thought "Wow, this is pretty good". The fact that I could munch on the filling before I baked it in the oven was great, because man, this recipe took a really long time to make and I was getting hungry.
I ended up having a lot of leftover enchilada sauce, so once I got back to my apartment the second time, I decided to make more enchiladas. But I didn't really want to make pulled pork again (and I guess I could have actually gone the vegan route, but uh...I didn't) so I tried a different type of Mexican meat and I made chicken tinga.
Yeah, this was...okay. The recipe listed several methods of cooking the chicken, and I opted for just throwing some raw chicken into the tinga sauce and letting it cook on the pan and then shredding it. I think I should have slow cooked it for a few hours instead. I probably cooked the chicken for too long and it was kind of tough, so shredding it was a pain.
I also had to buy another can of chipotles in adobo sauce, and now I need to figure out what to do with the rest of the can again.
But I was still able to make tasty tacos! Even if the meat is not the best, I can just throw it on a corn tortilla with some onions and lime and cilantro and it's a beautiful meal.
Enchiladas ended up being easier the second time around since I didn't have to make the sauce from scratch. I mixed some of the chicken tinga sauce into my remaining enchilada sauce from before and I think I like that it made it a little lighter.
Overall, I'm happy with it! I actually still have leftover enchilada sauce, but I think I'm all enchilada'd out for a while now.
A week before going home for the holidays, I bought some corn tortillas to make tacos. When I was home, we made tacos, and my aunt bought some corn tortillas because she knows I like them. The problem is no one else in my family really likes corn tortillas, so I took those home and now I have a surplus of corn tortillas.
I make tacos a lot, so this time I thought I'd make some enchiladas. The first few times I tried to make enchiladas in my life they were pretty terrible. But I think I've gotten better at it, somehow.
I was browsing enchilada recipes on Budget Bytes and came across Beef and Pineapple Enchiladas, and I thought, "Perfect! I can use my opened can of pineapple chunks!" and then I looked at the recipe more closely and I thought about the combination of ground beef and pineapples and thought "Ew, that sounds kinda gross."
Well, if it was really that bad, then Beth would have removed it from her site. The reviews were very positive so I figured I'd give it a shot. I wrote down the recipe in my notebook, and man were there a lot more steps in this than I realized. But it seemed easy, so it was a good thing to make on my lazy Sunday.
The filling actually didn't look too bad. But I should have added more pineapple. Use the whole can. This also made way way more enchilada sauce than I needed. I might have to freeze it and make more enchiladas in a month.
Not a bad recipe. I'd give it 4/5 stars.
Day 18 (Sunday): We decide to go on a trek to the Asian store. And it was stressful. The line for checking out was very, very long. I don't think I should ever come back on a Sunday. Because of how exhausting that was, we grab takeout for lunch.
And for dinner, we rolled some sushi!
Day 19 (Monday): I need to do something with the green beans since they're starting to look kind of sad. I bought a huge slab of salmon in a previous grocery trip, so I figured we'd do this simple salmon and green beans dish. My sister even de-scaled the salmon.
Slightly fancy and very delicious.
Day 20 (Tuesday): Somehow we're already at the point where we need to get creative again with our meals. We really do have a lot of ingredients, but I'm not quite sure how to put them all together. I look at the top of my white board. Corn Tortillas. I have no idea how long that pack of tortillas has been sitting in my fridge. At least several months. I must use them.
The first thing that comes to mind is enchiladas. (I know, you would think it's tacos, but I like to mix things up!) Looking through enchilada recipes, I can't quite find one that contains only ingredients I have. But this Skinnytaste recipe comes decently close. Except that I don't have the right ingredients for the sauce, so I consult Budget Bytes for that.
We make it work with what we have. Half a can of diced tomatoes with chiles, shredded chicken, some onions, and a bunch of spices. It tastes great.
I've been so busy at work that it's consumed my brain, and I haven't had a lot of mental capacity left over for really giving my cooking as much thought as I'd like. Which means I end up forgetting to take pictures of things. But, I looked at my phone, and it turns out I have enough pictures to write a post on some random things that I made over the past two weeks.
I had gone home to visit family for a week, in which I accompanied my mom in grocery shopping. She bought a ridiculous amount of vegetables that she wasn't going to be able to finish, so she gave me a whole bunch of stuff to take back to my place. Part of that was a lot of onions and bell peppers, so naturally, I had to make some fajitas. I've made these fajitas so many times, and they're always delicious.
Speaking of things wrapped in tortillas, I also made these pulled pork tacos. I don't have a picture of the initial batch of pulled pork, but I actually made it in non-taco form for my mom and her friend when they visited me. I also made cilantro lime rice (which you can kind of see in the tacos) and brussels sprouts and broccoli. Yes, there was a lot of flailing that day as I kept going back and forth between working and cooking.
I see cilantro and lime together, and I'm like "YES. I WANT THAT." So what happens is I buy those things for tacos, and then I just end up making more Mexican food because Mexican food uses a lot of cilantro and lime. (At least the kind I like does) These chicken thighs were really good, though I think using the cast iron pan was more trouble than it was worth for this. Next time, I'll just stick to one of my normal pans.
Oh, and obviously, I need to have some sides too, so I cooked some sweet potatoes and veggies. I didn't really use a recipe for them. I just cut them up, drizzled olive oil, and sprinkled various spices on them.
Yeah! Even more stuff that I wrapped in a tortilla! I just really like tortillas, okay? But, the heading for this is totally a lie, because when I went to the store they were completely out of chorizo, so I had to settle for just "sausage" instead. To be honest, I'm not a huge fan of enchiladas, but I had sweet potatoes, and I had been just roasting them so I wanted to do something different. This was good, but I think I just need to take a break from the Mexican food now.
Yeah I know, this is totally random and why this post is only mostly Mexican. Hey, I had some pizza dough and pizza sauce in the freezer, so why not. I had cheddar, mozzarella, and parmesan, so that's why it's three-cheese. This wasn't bad, but I'm going to have to improve on my pizza-making game. I definitely put too much sauce compared to cheese.