Saturday, June 25, 2011

I'm "Cookin' with Gas!" and a Recipe

Sweet Potato, Black Bean and Kale Enchiladas with Green Tomatillo Salsa
"They're not good, they're GREAT!"
-Marv Solganik
My kitchen renovation is finished (well, almost, but it's nothing that's stopping me from cooking like mad and having parties). Thank you to all of the wonderful HGK readers who stuck with me through my recipe dry spell. You won't be disappointed! I am on the warpath.
I love the sound of  gas igniting a burner. That's probably because I have been cooking with electric for the past 4 years. And most of the 7 years before that. So it's been mostly electric for over a decade. Why? Control. With electric, you have little control over the heat. With gas, you have a lot. Plus, a roasted marshmallow every now and then couldn't hurt anyone, could it?

I have been spending every spare minute I have in my kitchen. I almost feel like I have to give it a nickname. It's definitely a "she." She is very feminine, really. Classic. Retro. Large. With an industrial element. So I need a name that reflects all of those qualities. Got any ideas?

I'm loving it that I can spread out and still have my kids and neighbors hanging out with me and having dinner. What an incredible luxury! I feel very blessed.

So what was the first thing that I whipped up in Bessie (if that's what we are going to call her . . . I'm not sure)? A recipe inspired by Gena Hamshaw at Choosing Raw, of course! As many of you know, it is rare that I create an original recipe. What I am really good at is tweaking recipes to fit within the Nutritarian framework, or at least be as Nutritarian as I can get them to be. I love the brilliance of adding Blackstrap Mollasses to vegan enchiladas in Gena's recipe. It's a great source of iron and as all of us Nutritarian's know, iron is something we should keep an eye on. And vegan enchiladas are hearty, crowd pleasing dishes. You really can't go wrong with that.

Sweet Potato, Black Bean and Kale Enchiladas with Green Tomatillo Salsa
Inspired by this recipe by Gena Hamshaw
Serves 8-16, depending on how much other food you are serving!

Printable Recipe

2 jars green tomatillo salsa (at least 20 oz. total)
5 large sweet potatoes (or 8 regular ones), peeled and cut into large cubes
1 large yellow onion
2 8 oz. packages sliced mushrooms
4 packed cups chopped kale (you could even use more)
2 cans black beans, or 4 cups freshly cooked
6 tbsp blackstrap molasses
2 tbsp tahini or almond butter (optional, but makes the filling nice and creamy)
1/2 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
4 tbsp lime juice
1 tsp salt (to taste)
2 tsp cumin
4 tsp chili powder
Black pepper to taste
8 large whole grain tortillas (with sides trimmed off) or 12 small corn tortillas
1 cup or so Daiya pepperjack or cheddar cheese (optional)

Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees.

Boil a large pot of salted water, and add the sweet potatoes. Cook till they’re fork tender, and drain. Transfer to a very large bowl.

Saute onion with a few tablespoons of vegetable broth. Add broth as needed during saute process. When they’re tender and light brown, add the mushrooms and kale and stir. Cook, stirring frequently, until kale is tender.

Mash sweet potatoes, but leave them a little chunky.  Add cilantro, black beans, molasses, tahini or almond butter (if using), lime juice, salt, cumin, chili powder, and black pepper, and stir.

Coat the bottom of a 9x13 casserole dish with tomatillo salsa.

Assemble your enchiladas by rolling about 1/8 of the filling into each of your large tortillas (adjust proportions if using small corn tortillas) and laying them side by side into the baking dish. Cover them with the rest of the the tomatillo salsa (they’s supposed to be smothered).

Bake for about 30 minutes. Remove from oven and sprinkle with cheese. Return to oven and bake until cheese has melted and enchiladas are hot (if you make the enchiladas ahead and refrigerate them before baking, you’ll need to bake them for at least 45-60 minutes before the cheese step).

So what do you think would be a good name for my kitchen?


JL goes Vegan said...

Oh, yes, gas is the only way to go. I cannot go back to electric. Ever! You kitchen is looking amazing! I love alliteration when naming things..Gina the Giant (my bike) Olive the Outback (my car) So I'm feeling a K or hard C for Kitchen. Cookie the Kitchen?

Looking forward to your recipes!

Jen said...

How about Helga? It has the H & G & think Andrew Wyeth's lovely model.

Lori said...

Rosie- as in " Rosie the Riveter", from WWII. Strong, can- do attitude....

Wendy said...

I'm loving the suggestions!!!!!

QZB said...

I love Cookie! My suggestion would be "Lola", as to me it sounds very lush, sexy, and generous, like your kitchen. :)

Can't wait to try the recipe, it looks fantastic.

katshealthcorner said...

How about GORGEOUS! Because that is exactly what it is!!!

Anonymous said...

Katie. Friendly, homie, yet means business!

Laura @ Sprint 2 the Table said...

Lucky you with the gas! :) I wish my building had it - electric is so difficult.

Love the use of tahini and molasses in your enchiladas. So creative! Those are two of my favorite flavors/accents.

Anonymous said...

I am wondering why you don't microwave your sweet potatoes instead? I do it all the time and they come out awesome on the 'potato' setting of the microwave.

Anonymous said...

Lucy. Classic and sassy. And so close to lucky!

Alipet813 said...

Maybe you should name her Helen. That is the name you would get if you mix together Healthy + Kitchen.

Sarah said...

I just discovered your blog a few weeks ago and love what you are doing. We have recently changed our eating habits dramatically to focus on more of a plant-based diet, but it is a work in progress. One question inspired by this recipe: vegan cheese...It seems that Daiya is the best out there, but I just can't get into it. We don't eat a lot of cheese, but sometimes, well, sometimes you just need it for a recipe. Suggestions?
ps- your kitchen is beautiful.

Wendy (Healthy Girl) said...

Sarah-Vegan cheese is NOT health food. SO if you don't like it, skip it altogether. These enchiladas would be great without it. If you want to try a different vegan cheese, I believe there is one made of rice, but check the ingredients because it may contain other things you won't like.

Anon-I hadn't thought about microwaving the sweet potatoes, but that is certainly an option.

Anonymous said...

I lurk. I love your kitchen! Great food ideas too. I always come back.

Healthy Girl said...

Thanks Vicki!

Megan C said...

I would love to see more pictures of that pantry! It looks so organized and BEAUTIFUL!!!

Wendy said...

Okay Megan C, twist my arm!!!! Of course I will show you pictures of my pantry.

Megan said...

@ Sarah and Wendy - I've never been able to get into the vegan cheese... instead I've been topping my enchiladas with a cashew cream sauce (just a light drizzle since it's certainl caloric) and my non-vegan BF doesn't miss the cheese!

Just soak a cup of cashews over night (or for a few hrs) then blend with the soaking water and play around with additions - lime and cumin for enchiladas, garlic and sundried tomatoes for a pizza topping. It's very fun and versitle! You can control how smooth or thick. Sometimes I blend only to the thickness of ricotta. I started with the cashew cream recipes from and just keep experimenting!

Healthy Girl said...

Thanks Megan-that is a great suggestion for a cheese alternative!

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