Friday, August 31, 2012

Stacked Enchilada Dutch Oven Pie

Use your less-than-perfect garden tomatoes in an quick & easy blender enchilada sauce.  That sauce will be the perfect touch to make this stacked main dish - and it’s even better in a dutch oven.  Don’t worry though - no coals required.  Simply bake it in your oven - turns out fabulous.

I used dutch ovens (a LOT) when I had a young family and we left late in the day to find a camping spot.  I always used my own (kitchen) oven to bake a dutch oven meal, and then I’d wrap it in newspaper & blankets in a big cardboard box.  We would put it in the back of the van and drive hours before arriving.  After setting up the tent trailer and getting things situated - our meal was hot and ready to eat as it got dark.  Good memories.

A lot of people are traveling this weekend, being Labor Day.  This would be a great meal to start in the afternoon, wrap up to travel, and enjoy late in the day.

The best thing about this is the sauce.  I have a bunch of tomatoes all trying to ripen at different stages right now in my garden.  There are never quite enough to bottle all at once, however.  That’s a bit irritating, because (really) how much taco salad can you eat during August and September?  I hate to have them go to waste, and all my neighbors are trying to give theirs away too.  So... this sauce was born.  I’m really happy with it - and I used up all my ugly tomatoes.  You know what I’m talking about - the ones with blossom end rot, that split halfway open, or were hidden under all the others with half the tomato soft & unusable.  

I would imagine any blender could accomplish this, but I used my high-power one.  I didn’t blanch them or remove the skin, just the bad parts.  I threw them in - skin, seeds, and all.  I used the “whole juice” setting and it ended up a bright red tomato juice.  From there I adjusted the recipe for Enchilada Sauce (minus the can)  Running it through the “soups” cycle a few times - it came out hot, thickened, and ready to use.  Awesome!

From there, I used a 12” dutch oven to brown the meat & onion.  If you don’t have a standard dutch oven, use any heavy pan with that diameter.  It’s great you don’t have to clean out the pan - just remove the browned meat and it has enough fat coating the bottom that it’s ready to stack the pie at this point.  

I tried this with layered corn tortillas, and it was really good.  I prefer using flour tortillas because they don’t fall apart and disappear into the pie.  As you can see from the photos, flour tortillas keep the pie in one piece to easily slice and serve.

This really exceeded my expectations...  An easy, one-pot meal - and uses your garden tomatoes as a bonus.  You'll find the complete recipe at:

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