One Skillet Enchilada

I’ve been on a homemade Mexican(ish) food binge the last few days. After eating fajitas, naked burrito bowl and quesadilla I wanted to try something different while also using up leftover tortillas and various sauces. What started as an experiment ended as an extremely delicious, healthy and flavour-explosion in my mouth! I promise you, once you try this recipe you won’t need the excuse of using leftover food to make this!

  • Servings: 2
  • Difficulty: Easy
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Ingredients

  • 4 corn tortillas
  • 1 red onion, sliced
  • 1 small bunch broccoli, chopped into small florets
  • 3 cloves garlic, sliced
  • 2 handfulls of rocket, roughly chopped
  • 1/2 cup baba ganoush
  • 1 cup roast vegetable pasta sauce (or enchilada sauce)
  • 1tspn paprika
  • 1tspn cumin powder
  • 2tspn olive oil
  • salt to taste
  • cheese for garnish (optional)

Method

  1. Heat oven to 220C.
  2. Stack the tortillas on top of each other, place on a cutting board and cut into 6 wedges. (Think of the stack as the face of a clock and cut 3 lines through the stack: 12 to 6 o’clock, 2 to 8 and 4 to 10 o’clock).
  3. Line a baking tray with grease proof paper. Spread tortilla wedges in a single layer and bake for 10mins. Remove from oven and set aside to cool. (Taste one to make sure it’s crispy enough. Taste another with the baba ganoush and a third with the pasta sauce. Tell yourself off for being greedy and go back to cooking)
  4. Heat oil in a frying pan. Once heated add garlic and saute until golden. Add sliced onions, sprinkling of salt and cook till onions are soft.
  5. Add broccoli florets, paprika, cumin and fry till broccoli is cooked but still has a bite to it.
  6. Add baba ganoush and pasta sauce to the pan.
  7. Mix it all up. (Eat a couple of chips with the sauce; just to make sure it tastes alright of course). Adjust seasoning.
  8. Add the crispy chips to the pan, 1/4cup water, rocket and simmer for 5mins or just until the chips have absorbed the flavourful sauce and have started to go soft but are still chewy and a bit crunchy.
  9. Garnish with cheese. I did this for the pictures but honestly this dish is creamy and flavourful enough even without it. I’ll leave the cheese out next time.
  10. Transfer to a bowl and enjoy straightaway!

Notes

  1. Feel free to experiment with different veggies. You could use mushrooms, peppers or fresh corn.
  2. Throw in some cooked beans and some shredded chicken/pork for extra protein. You could even top this with a fried egg if you fancied!
  3. Whatever variations you try I’d suggest not swapping some things like garlic, red onion, baba ganoush (for the creaminess and smokiness it imparts to the dish), red sauce, rocket and the spices as they provide great depth of flavour!
  4. I used corn tortillas coz they retain their chewiness and crunchiness even after adding to the sauce. You could use flour tortillas too but these will likely go soggy.

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Mushroom Spinach & Caramelised Onion Quesadilla

The tried and tested combo of mushrooms, spinach and cheese never gets old! I go through phases where I can’t get enough of it and end up eating it for at least half a week either in pasta dishes, wraps, veggie bowls, naked burrito bowls, quesadillas, omelettes or just stacked on some wholemeal sourdough bread. This recipe makes for a super quick and comforting mid week meal!

  • Servings: 1
  • Difficulty: Easy
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Ingredients

  • 2 corn tortillas
  • 100gms cremini mushrooms, sliced
  • 50gms spinach, roughly chopped
  • 1/2 large white onion, sliced
  • 4 cloves garlic, 3 sliced and 1 minced
  • 150gms of greek yoghurt
  • 75-100gms of cheddar, grated (use as much or as little as you like)
  • salt, black pepper and balsamic vinegar
  • 1-2tbspns of olive oil

Method

  1. I start with the onions to give it time to caramalise slightly. Heat 2tspns of oil in a frying pan on medium-high heat. Add onions, stir fry for a couple of mins. Lower heat to medium-low, add a pinch of salt and a couple splashes of balsamic vinegar and let it cook till you prepare other ingredients.
  2. In a separate pan, cook spinach until slightly wilted, transfer to a bowl and let cool. Drain excess water once cool enough to handle.
  3. Heat remaining oil in the same pan, add sliced garlic. Once they start turning golden add the mushrooms, some salt and stir fry till cooked but still chewy. Keep aside (in a sieve if it’s too watery).
  4. Wipe the pan clean with a paper towel. Make sure the pan is hot, heat one corn tortilla for 10secs on each side. Add half the cheese, add some salt and cracked pepper, wait for 5secs or so before transferring to a plate to let the cheese melt completely. Repeat with the other tortilla but leave this one in the pan.
  5. Top with wilted spinach, transfer from the onions from the other pan onto the tortilla, add the mushrooms.
  6. Add the other tortilla with the melted cheese onto this stack, cheese side down (duh).
  7. Cook on low-med heat on both sides until the tortilla turns crispy (to your liking). While this happens add minced garlic to the greek yoghurt, salt to taste and give it a quick whisk. Adjust seasoning as per your taste. You could also use sour cream for this.
  8. Transfer quesadilla to a plate and cut in half. Dip the hot, cheesy and crispy goodness in the garlic sauce and devour!

Grain-Free Veggie Bake

  • Servings: 3
  • Difficulty: Easy
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Ingredients

  • 250gms cauliflower, grated (I used store bought cauliflower “rice”)
  • 250gms mushrooms (I used mix of white and cremini), sliced
  • 1/2 red pepper, diced
  • 60gms baby spinach
  • 1stalk of spring onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed and sliced
  • 2 tbspn olive oil
  • 300gms pasta sauce (I used Jamie Oliver’s Tomato & Chilli one)
  • 75-100gms cheddar or tasty cheese, grated
  • salt and cracked pepper to taste

Method

  1. Heat oven to 180C
  2. Heat 1tbspn of oil in a pan. Saute garlic till golden, add mushrooms and stir fry till cooked but still chewy. Transfer to a baking dish.
  3. Heat the remaining oil in the same pan. Add grated cauliflower, spring onions and red pepper and stir fry for 3-4 mins till cooked but still crunchy. Transfer to the baking dish.
  4. Add spinach to the pan and let the heat wilt it a little and transfer to the dish.
  5. Add pasta sauce, adjust seasoning and stir through. 
  6. Sprinkle with cheese and add cracked pepper. 
  7. Bake for 10mins till the cheese is melted. Change setting to grill, turn up the temperature to 200C and grill till cheese is golden.
  8. Serve immediately and enjoy!

Notes

  1. Feel free to experiment with the veggies, the ones I used give out a lot of water so keep that in mind.
  2. Stir through some cooked pasta along with the sauce to make it more filling. Or serve the dish with some fresh sourdough bread to soak up the yummy sauce.
  3. For a vegan option, use cashew cheese instead.

Roasted cauliflower and garlic soup

  • Servings: 3
  • Difficulty: Easy
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Ingredients

  • 1 medium head cauliflower, washed and cut into 2cms thick florets
  • 1 head garlic, crushed with skin on
  • 1 tspn coriander powder
  • 1/2 tspn cumin power
  • 1/2 tspn turmeric
  • 1/2 tspn salt
  • 1 green chilli, chopped (optional)
  • zest of 1 large lemon
  • 2 tbspn olive oil
  • 5 cups veggie broth
  • Chopped fresh herbs for garnish, I used mint and coriander
  • 1/2 cup cooked barley (optional)

Method

  1. Pre-heat regular oven to 200C
  2. Mix all dry spices, lemon zest and add olive oil, combine and set aside
  3. Add cauliflower florets and garlic to a mixing bowl, pour over the spice mix and combine thoroughly.
  4. Spread out florets on a baking tray lined to baking paper. Roast for 25-35mins till the edges of the florets are a bit charred.
  5. Remove tray from oven and let cool.
  6. Peel the garlic. Blend the cauliflower, garlic and broth in batches and add to a pot.
  7. Add the cooked barley if using and heat through.
  8. Ladle into bowls, garnish with fresh herbs and serve immediately

Quinoa Stir Fry

  • Servings: 2
  • Difficulty: Easy
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Ingredients

  • 1cup quinoa
  • 250gms mushrooms of your choice, sliced (I use either portobello or cremini)
  • 150gms brussel sprouts (or cabbage), thinly sliced
  • 4 cloves garlic, crushed and sliced
  • 1 green chilli, deseeded and chopped
  • 3 tbspns olive oil
  • Handful of spring onions, chopped
  • Light soy sauce, as needed
  • Sesame oil, as needed
  • Salt to taste

Method

  1. Cook quinoa.
    • Rinse quinoa for 3-5mins under cold water, rubbing grains together. This removes the Saponin which gives the grain a bitter taste.
    • (Optional) Add wet quinoa to the pot and roast on low till grains are dry and toasted.
    • Add 1cup of cold water to the pot and bring to a boil. (I know most recipes call for twice the amount of water but somehow this makes quinoa quite mush for me every time so after a lot of trial & error I came to this ratio which works for me every single time. Feel free to cook it the way you want though)
    • Turn flame to low, cover pot and cook for 15mins or until water is absorbed.
    • Turn off flame but do not uncover the pot. Leave for 30mins or so until completely cooled.
    • Open pot and fluff quinoa with a fork.
  2. In a pan, saute sliced mushrooms with de-seeded green chilli, half the garlic, salt and olive oil until just cooked. Set aside.
  3. Add brussel sprouts to the pan with a bit of oil and saute for 2-3mins until cooked but still enough bite to it. Add soy sauce and a few drops of sesame oil to taste.
  4. Throw in the mushrooms, spring onions and quinoa and stir fry on high till there’s no liquid left. Add some soy sauce and sesame oil to your liking.
  5. Distribute into 2 bowls and serve straight away!

Notes/Ideas:

  1. I never used to enjoy quinoa in stir fries as the grains tend to get “lost” and the dish didn’t have enough bite or chewiness to it like it does with rice. But ensuring that quinoa is cooked right and adding it to dishes without a sauce helps. I sometimes throw in a handful of leftover barley just to get that extra chewiness.
  2. To give this an Indian twist you could forgo the soy and sesame oil and add a couple teaspoons of curry powder (or mixed Moroccon spice) in step 4 and serve it like Quinoa Pulao with some lemon on the side.

Fish Amok

Ask any one who has visited Cambodia what their favourite local dish was and chances are high that they’ll say “Fish Amok” without having to think too hard. This dish is traditionally made with fish that is lightly spiced and cooked in coconut milk. The fish can be substituted with chicken or lots of vegetables for a veggie version.

  • Servings: 2
  • Difficulty: Medium
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Ingredients

  • 150gms fresh snake fish (or salmon)
  • 15-20gms sliced fresh lemongrass stalk
  • 1 fresh kaffir lime leaf
  • 1cm fresh galangal
  • 1cm fresh root turmeric
  • 2cms fresh finger root (Chinese ginger)
  • 2 red sun dried paprika (substitute with 1-2tspn of paprika powder)
  • 150ml fresh coconut milk
  • 1/2tspn chicken stock powder/knorr/buillion
  • 3cloves garlic
  • 1tspn brown sugar
  • a pinch of salt
  • 1tspn shrimp paste
  • 1 kale leaf (or 4 big spinach leaves), sliced
  • A big pinch of cornstarch
  • 1 red chilli, deseeded and very thinly sliced
  • Ceramic bowl (traditionally banana leaf is used to make a bowl but this isn’t easily available outside Asia)

Method

  1. Rinse and soak the sun dried paprika to rehydrate for a minute.
  2. Thinly slice fresh lemongrass and set aside. Put in a mortar.
  3. Slice all these into small pieces – kaffir lime leaf, peeled galangal, peeled turmeric, finger root and peeled garlic. Add to the mortar.
  4. Add the soaked paprika and shrimp paste to the mortar. Pound for 10-15mins, regularly checking for consistency of the paste. Paste is ready when it’s absolutely smooth.
  5. Finely slice the fish into thin 2cm strips and add to a bowl. add chicken stock, salt, sugar, 1tbspn spice paste, 4tbspn coconut milk and mix till everything is combined.
  6. Strip off the stem from the kale leaf and tear into small pieces and add to the ceramic bowl.
  7. Add the marinated fish into the ceramic bowl (do not mix it with the leaves) and steam it for 15-20mins using a steamer or a water bath.
  8. Make coconut cream by adding 50ml of fresh coconut milk to a pot, add a pinch of corn starch and simmer for a minute till it thickens, while stirring constantly.
  9. Remove bowl from the steamer, garnish with 1tbspn of coconut cream, few thinly sliced kaffir leaves and sliced fresh red chilli. Serve with steamed rice!

Beef Lok Lak

One of the dishes I learned in my Khmer cooking class was Beef Lok Lak. This is a Cambodian twist on a Vietnamese dish consisting of cubes of marinated and sautéed beef served on a bed of lettuce, tomatoes and cucumber, then drizzled with a delicious sauce and served with rice and a fried egg sunny side up. Beef can be substituted with chicken. When I next have access to a kitchen I will try making a veggie version with mushrooms and tofu.

[recipes Serves=1 Time=”30 mins” Difficulty=Easy]

Ingredients

For Beef

  • 100gms beef
  • 4-5tspn vegetable oil (or sunflower oil)
  • 1tspn chicken stock powder/knorr/buillion
  • 1/2tspn soft palm sugar or jaggery
  • 1/2tspn brown sugar
  • 1/4tspn of salt
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1tspn light soy sauce
  • 1tspn oyster sauce
  • 1-2tspn mild hot chilli sauce
  • 2tspn tomato sauce (use less sugar if using ketchup)
  • 1tspn black pepper powder
  • 1egg
  • 2 leaves of lettuce
  • 3 whole slices of a tomato
  • 2 onion rings, halved
  • 1 lime
  • handful of coriander leaves
  • Steamed rice

Method

  1. Dice beef into 1.5cms pieces and put in bowl. Add 2tspn of oil, 1/2tspn chicken stock powder, palm sugar, soy sauce, a pinch of salt, oyster sauce, chilli sauce, tomato sauce and 1/4tspn of black pepper powder. Stir and beat with a spoon for a couple of minutes and then put aside.
  2. Squash and peel the garlic, mince finely and set aside.
  3. Lay the lettuce leaves on a plate, arrange the onion slices on top and then add tomato slices on stop of the onion. Add steamed ride to the plate.
  4. Dip Sauce: Squeeze lime in a bowl, add a pinch of salt, 1/2tspn of brown sugar, 1/2tspn of chick stock powder, 1/2tspn of black pepper powder. Stir with a spoon. Set aside.
  5. Add remaining oil to a frying pan and turn the heat to high. Saute garlic for 10-15 seconds before oil becomes too hot. When garlic turns golden, pour marinated beef in the pan and stir fry until the beef is cooked and the sauce begins to thicken. Add this beef on top of the salad. Garnish with coriander leaves.
  6. In the same pan, add the dip sauce and stir for a minute or so till it thickens slightly. Pour into a small bowl, set it next to the beef.
  7. Fry an egg, sunny side up and then put on the plate.
  8. That’s it. dish is assembled and ready to eat!

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