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Apr 7, 2007 03:38 PM

Enchilada Novice help? (veggie)

I don't have much experience cooking Mexican cuisine, but a recent trip south of the border left me inspired (and with a jar of Oaxacan Mole Negro). I'd like to cook up some enchiladas for a dinner party next week, but one of the guests doesn't eat meat, and tofu seemed like a better substitute than fish. Does anyone have any tips on basic enchilada making, or on utilizing tofu in enchiladas? Or maybe I should just do them with mixed veggies?

I've looked at tons of recipes for enchiladas on line but most of them involve making your own mole or using meat. I feel like I'm over complicating a fairly simple endeavor, but I'm also feeling a little lost. Any help would be greatly appreciated!

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  1. How about this recipe? It involves using tofu. You could probably sub your jar of mole (if that's what you want to use) for the enchilada sauce.

    Or this one, which combines spinach and ricotta

    1. You can always simply fill them with cheese - cheese enchiladas are always popular. Serve vegetables/salad on the side.

      1. I think veggie enchiladas would be tastier than tofu. I've had some great ones stuffed with sauteed zucchini, squash, tomatoes and onions. Topped with monterey jack and baked. And you can find some great tomatillo sauces out there. Check Trader Joe's.

        2 Replies
        1. re: mojoeater

          Mojoeater is on the right track here with his/her suggestion. Vegetables that would be used in Mexico would be calabacita (use zucchini if you don't have a Latin/Mexican market nearby. Zucchini isn't quite as sweet as calabacita), squash blossoms, corn, and a combination of these 3 vegetables. They would probably be steamed first more than sauteed, but either way perfectly fine. Just do whichever one you perfer. Cubed carrots and potato is also another option, as is spinach.

          The vegetables can be mixed with cheese or left straight. There is a Mexican cheese called requeson that is very similar to ricotta. It would blend well with the vegetables. If that's not your preference but you want to add cheese, use a good melting cheese like Oaxacan cheese or chihuahua. You can sub a good quality mozz for the Oaxacan cheese. To garnish, crumble cotija cheese over the top when you're ready to serve.

          Vegetables and the cheeses I mentioned will pair up very well with your jar of mole negro. If you elect to use it, you can also garnish your enchiladas with thin rings of white onion which will add a small bite to the finished dish.

          Here is a pictorial showing how to assemble enchiladas if you need the help

          Good luck and trust your instincts. Enchiladas are really pretty easy once you get the hang of it and they'll taste good in spite of technique or final appearance.

          1. re: DiningDiva

            Just plain tacos enchilados with cheese in mole sauce are classic (use a rather melty/stringy cheese inside like quesillo; as mentioned, mozarella is probably best bet as a sub...). Smother in mole sauce and sprinkle some cilantro, raw onion rings, a crumbly queso fresco/cotija-type cheese, and maybe a couple roasted pumpkin seeds.

            If squash blossoms are available, I also definitely second this rec; they're great with cheese! (Outside of the mole context, squash blossom and mushroom quesadilla is great too; but I don't know about the mole and mushroom combo.)

        2. I have the best recipe!!!!!!!! for you!!!!!!
          here is the change si personally make....i use flour tortillas (PERsonal pref) and i use tomatillo salas instead of making my own for a wuick meal - delicious!

          1. just a suggestion: maybe seitan would taste better,( & have more interesting texture) than tofu in enchiladas. either way, lots of interesting vegetables will serve you well. good luck.