I’ll be the first to admit that I’m a lazy chef.  I eat a lot of salads (read, no cooking), have eschewed making most dressings (a little apple cider vinegar mashed with ½ an avocado in the same bowl where I’m going to build my salad will suffice) and I typically break pieces of tempeh off the big block and eat them cold as opposed to steaming them or baking the slab of said tempeh with some sort of tasty rub.  I’ve finally committed to making at least one intricate “dish” each week.  I mean, how many times can I blog about kale salads and smoothies?  Readers, are you bored yet?

The creamy cashew cheese really makes this enchilada dish.

I’ve been toying with the idea of kale enchiladas. I had an amazing rendition of them at a potluck almost a year ago, and the idea has resonated with me since then. I started fooling around with this at about 2:00 a.m. yesterday morning (if you can’t sleep, then cook, right?).  In the same vein as the previous blog about tomato soup, this sauce can be made in under TEN minutes. I would recommend doubling the sauce recipe so that you have extra for a later use.    I used both cashew and shredded vegan cheese because I like the creaminess that the cashew cheese gives to the enchilada filling but the appearance and stretchiness of the shredded cheese on top. You could use one or the other.  Rolling cold corn tortillas is challenging as they usually will break and crack, but you can alleviate this problem and make them pliable if you wrap them in foil and put into your preheated oven for 10 minutes while you steam the kale and tempeh.  If you don’t do this, your tortillas will probably break as you lay the enchilada rolls into the baking dish (as mine did).  No biggy as the enchiladas still taste incredible.

Kale, Ranchero Bean and Tempeh Enchiladas

Components

  • 8-10 each Organic Corn Tortillas (always buy organic to ensure that you aren’t getting any GMO Corn). I used 6” or 7” tortillas
  • Enchilada Sauce
  • Steamed Kale
  • Steamed Tempeh
  • 1 can Ranchero Beans or Black Beans (I used the organic Ranchero Beans from Whole Food’s 365 line)
  • Cashew Cheese
  • ½ Cup Chopped Cilantro
  • ½ Cup Green Onions
  • 1 Cup shredded vegan cheese such as Daiya or you can use extra Cashew Cheese (I used both)

The Sauce

Ingredients

  • 1 medium Onion, diced
  • ½ Cup Water (I used the water from the Ancho Chili Soak)
  • 4 cloves Garlic, minced (or 1 tbsp minced Garlic)
  • 1.5 Cups Vegetable Stock (I used 1 cube Veg stock base and 1.5 cups water—Me. Lazy. No cook stock.)
  • 1-2 ounces (about 3 large) dried Ancho chilis, soaked in hot water for ½ hour.  Reserve soaking water for anything else in this recipe for which you need water
  • 1 Tbsp Chili Powder
  • 2 Tbsp Cumin Powder
  • 1 each 15 ounce can Fire Roasted Tomatoes
  • 1 tsp Dried Oregano or Epazote
  • 2 tsp Agave Nectar
  • ½-1 tsp salt
  • 2 Tbsp Garbanzo Bean or Masa Flour  (I used Garbanzo Bean)

Preparation

Saute Onions over medium high heat.  Brown them slightly. They should start to stick.  Release and soften onions by adding ¼ cup water to pan. Reduce until the pan is almost dry. Add garlic and cook 45 seconds.  Add remaining water and cook until water is almost gone. Transfer to high speed blender. Add remaining ingredients and blend until smooth.

The Kale and The Tempeh

  • 1 bunch Kale, stems removed and cut into ½ inch ribbons.
  • 8 ounces Tempeh, cut into ¼” cubes
  • Salt, Cumin and ½ Lime

Fit a large pot with a steamer basket. Fill with one inch of water. Steam Kale for five minutes. Remove. Add Tempeh and steam for 2 minutes. Be careful when removing lid as steam can burn you.  Sprinkle Salt, Cumin and Lime Juice over Kale and Tempeh.

Cashew Cheese

  • 1 Cup Raw Cashews, soaked for 1 hour and drained
  • 2 Tbsp Apple Cider Vinegar
  • 1 Clove Garlic
  • 4 tsp Chipotle Powder
  • ½ of a medium Red Pepper
  • 2 tsp Agave Nectar
  • ½ tsp Salt
  • 2 Tbsp Nutritional Yeast
  • ½ Cup Water plus more to adjust consistency

Combine all ingredients into high speed blender (I use a Vitamix). Process until smooth.  Thin with water until consistency of room-temperature hummus.

Steamed kale (couldn’t resist). At least the pic gives you an idea of what color it should be when properly steamed

 

Assembly of the enchiladas

Singled out for a better view

Assembly

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  • Wrap tortillas in foil and heat in oven while you steam your kale and tempeh (about 15 minutes)
  • In a 7 inch x 10.5 inch (I used a Le Creuset dish) dish, spread the bottom with 1 Cup of Sauce and ¼ cup water (I used the Ancho Chili water). Don’t get too hung up on the size of the baking dish; you can add or subtract the number of tortilla rolls depending on sized of dish
  • Remove tortillas from oven and remove from foil
  • Lay your steamed tortillas onto your work area
  • Lay a vertical stripe of Cashew Cheese
  • Repeat with Tempeh, Beans, Kale and Green Onions or Cilantro
  • Loosely roll up enchiladas one by one and place seam side down into pan
  • Lightly cover the enchiladas with 1 Cup of sauce and top with cheese
  • Cover dish with foil and bake for 30 minutes
  • Remove foil and top with chopped Cilantro or Green Onions

Enjoy Enjoy Enjoy!

I’m still enjoying a structure-fee month of not really triathlon-ing (I hope that you all realize that I say that in jest), yoga and Core40.  I can’t wait to start training again as I was so inspired watching (via internet) the 70.3 championship in Vegas on Sunday.

Today I did the following:

  • 1100 yard hard swim
  • 50 minutes of pool running
  • 1 hour Hot Power Fusion Yoga

Ooh, ooh, think I’ve broken the under exercise/no energy bar rule.  I’m opting for a piece of Vega’s Maca-Chocolate bar.