Recipe for spinach enchiladas with jalapeno cream sauce

By Katherine Hysmith   –   The Boston Globe

Serves 4

A greener, but heartier take on traditional enchiladas, these are made with soft flour tortillas and topped with a rich and slightly spicy jalapeno cream sauce. Cool Greek yogurt and cream help temper the jalapenos, but if you prefer something even spicier, leave in the peppers’ heat-packed seeds.

Olive oil (for the dish)
3 jalapenos
cup heavy cream
½ cup plain Greek-style yogurt
½ cup chopped fresh cilantro
¼ teaspoon ground cumin
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons water
Salt and black pepper, to taste
1 small onion, finely diced
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
10 ounces (about 10 cups) fresh baby spinach, coarsely chopped
cups shredded Monterey Jack cheese
8 flour tortillas (6 inches)

1. Turn the broiler to high. Oil a 9-by-13-inch baking dish.

2. On a small rimmed baking sheet, broil the jalapenos as close to the element as possible, turning every half minute, for 3 minutes, or until the skins are blistered and blackened in spots. Remove from the oven and cool. Turn the oven to 375 degrees.

3. Gently pull off and discard the jalapeno skins. Stem them, slit them open, and scrape out the seeds and ribs. Coarsely chop 2 of the jalapenos and finely chop the remaining one.

4. In a food processor, combine the coarsely chopped jalapenos, cream, yogurt, ¼ cup of the cilantro, cumin, 1 tablespoon of the olive oil, water, salt, and black pepper. Pulse until the mixture forms a smooth, creamy sauce.

5. In a large skillet over medium heat, heat the remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil. Add the onion, garlic, and finely chopped jalapeno. Cook, stirring often, for 5 minutes. Add the spinach and gently stir until the leaves begin to wilt. Turn off the heat and leave to cool for about 5 minutes. Stir in 1 cup of the Monterey Jack cheese.

6. Place a tortilla on the counter. Add a spoonful of the spinach mixture in a thick band down the middle of the tortilla. Roll up and set, seams down, in the baking dish. Repeat with remaining tortillas and filling. The enchiladas should fit snugly in the dish. Pour the jalapeno sauce over the enchiladas and sprinkle with remaining ¼ cup of Monterey Jack cheese.

7. Bake the enchiladas for 25 to 30 minutes or until the sauce begins to brown on top. Sprinkle with remaining ¼ cup cilantro.

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