Monday, April 19, 2010

Green Chili Tortilla Stack

If you've read here much, you know that everything for me goes back to my parents.  I'm not sure that everyone was so deeply affected by their childhood, but I was.  I still dream consistently of my father.  I talk to him in my head when things go wrong.  Some times it seems that he is talking back to me.  Giving me bits of encouragement.  "Kid, hold your head up and don't let it bother you."  "Kid, you are fine." "Kid, dig in and fight."

One night I needed to produce a meal and didn't have a plan.  Actually some extra eaters used the meal I had for that night for lunch earlier in the day.  I needed to come up with something.  To my freezer and pantry.  My mother made a stack of tortillas with seasoned meat and cheese.  Hers had onions, which we do not eat.  She added diced tomatoes and lettuce or top and didn't use the olives.  This recipe is completely original to me but is reminiscent of those nights when her version came steaming hot out of the oven. 

Green Chili Tortilla Stack
1 lb ground beef
1 pkg taco seasoning, or home made taco seasoning
1 can mild green chili enchilada sauce, (we like La Victoria Mild green chili enchilada sauce)
4 flour tortillas
1 cup pre-shredded Mexican blend cheese
2.25 oz can sliced black olives

First, know your microwave.  Most modern microwaves will do a good job of defrosting frozen ground beef.  Experiment until you find the setting that works best and the number of minutes.  That way, you'll be prepared for those nights when it is necessary 

Next, I rarely buy those taco seasoning packets.  Here is what I do.  It works for burrito meat, as well

Homemade taco seasoning.
2 t. dry minced onion
1. t. salt.
1 t. chili powder
1/2 dried minced garlic

1/2 t. dried ground cumin

1/4 t. dried oregano

Brown hamburger with taco seasoning.  In a pyrex pie plate or casserole dish large enough to accommodate one tortilla lieing flat, place 1/4 cup of the meat mixture and 1 T. of the enchilada sauce and spread it out.  Place a tortilla over.  Layer another 1/2 cup meat, 2 T. enchilada sauce, 1/4 cheese.  Start layering again with another tortilla.  Continue with these layers until you run out of engredients.  Top with sliced olives.  Cook in overn preheated to 350 for 20 minutes or until heated throughout.  Slice into wedges like a pie.  Serve with a vegetable.

The leftovers can be packaged for lunch.  I've done the same thing with black beans for a vegetarian option. 

Remember to pile it high.

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