Did you think a little agonizing flank pain would keep me away from the Smackdown? WRONG. I powered through, in the form of having Brian do everything while I sat on the couch.
Aside from doing all the cooking he also decided he wanted to take all the pictures, which means, um, that there aren’t a ton of usable ones. This is a man who once came back from a two-week trip to Germany, and the most recognizable photo was one he accidentally took of his shoe. But A+ for effort!
Before we get started, can I make a general request to the internet? It is this: Please stop the “This is what my mother thinks I do… This is what I really do” meme. Because here’s the thing; if you work in an office you spend your day sitting in front of a computer trying to figure out how much more time you can spend on Pinterest* before it starts seriously eating into your productivity, so all office-based people can just use the same graphic. And everyone else is doing their assigned task – pumping gas, building skyscrapers, assembling widgets – and bitching about their bosses to their coworkers, so there’s one graphic for them.
As you can plainly see, we therefore only need two graphics. Maybe three; full-time parents should get one. Someone make those, and we can all go about our business. You only need your own graphic if you’re, like, an astronaut or a wizard or the president. And ten bucks says even the president is dicking around on Pinterest.
Thanks for listening, internet.
*In my convalescent state, I’ve become a hopeless pinner.
Dinner tonight came from Fiesta at Rick’s, a great book by my secret boyfriend and pot dealer Rick Bayless. (You know he’s growing that shit in his rooftop garden. No chef is that zen.) I would tell you the dish’s Spanish name but the book is in the kitchen and navigating the stairs hurts, so you’re stuck with the less-festive English translation, roasted vegetable enchiladas with creamy tomatillo sauce and cheese.
For the sauce, Brian charred some tomatillos, onion and jalapeño and chucked them into the FoPro. The resulting puree got seared off in hot oil, concentrating the flavors, before being fortified with stock and Mexican crema (see above). While it simmered, he roasted off parsnips, carrots, butternut squash and mushrooms for the filling and grated up some Mexican melting cheese, which I’m pretty sure is just re-packaged Monterey Jack.
Unfortunately, there aren’t really any photos of these parts of the process. Here, have a picture of my dogs instead.
That’s Chester, behind Felix’s hindquarters. Look at those jowls! Don’t you just want to pinch them? Don’t worry, I did it for you.
The filling got rolled into some warm, pliable flour tortillas and tucked into a cast iron pan over a bed of the sauce.
Note to my gentle readers: If you decide to re-create this, you want to chop your veg pretty small, like a half-inch dice. That’ll make it a lot easier to stuff the enchiladas.
More sauce, a heap of cheese, and the pan went into the oven for ten minutes or so. Since everything’s already cooked, you’re just heating everything through and melting the cheese.
I’d like to take a moment here to pat myself on the back. The whole time Brian was cooking, I sat on the couch quietly and did not offer any advice unless specifically asked. No, “Why are you doing it that way?” or “What if you tried this?” or, most likely, “Why don’t you let me do this part?”
If you’ve ever seen me in the kitchen with Brian, you know that this is a BIG HONKING DEAL. So, you know, +1 for me.
Not that this is surprising in any way, because we are talking about Rick Bayless, but we loved these. Pretty simple to assemble, and great on a chilly night. The tomatillo sauce was incredibly well-balanced, with the crema smoothing out the blunt edges of the tomatillo and jalapeño (which wasn’t de-seeded). The root veg were caramelized and gently sweet, and a final topping of raw onion and cilantro kept things fresh and biting.
If handing the Smackdown over the Brian garners these kinds of results, I may have to severely injure myself more often.