I've started meal planning by cuisine, because it allows me to buy fewer ingredients during each grocery trip and use the same ingredients for multiple dishes. So far I've done Italian, Mediterranean, Indian, and Asian meal weeks, and they've all turned out well according to me and other household occupants. I somehow don't get sick of eating the same type of cuisine for a week, which is strange bc when we eat out I never want to have the same type of food two nights in a row.
Most recently, I decided on Mexican week thanks to a recent story I wrote for Vamonde featuring Chicago's Pilsen neighborhood. You can read the story by downloading the Vamonde app on your phone and searching for "An afternoon in Pilsen". This specific dish is inspired by some AMAZING black bean verde enchiladas I had at Taqueria Casa del Pueblo, which I talk about in the Pilsen post. After trying them, there's no way I could use verde sauce from a can for my recipe and had to make it from scratch. Totes worth it.
- 5 medium tomatillos
- 4 large cloves garlic
- 2 jalapenos, stem trimmed. I left the seeds in for extra spice
- 1 large poblano pepper, stem trimmed
- 1/2 cup cilantro
- 2 stalks green onions, ends trimmed
- 2 tbsp lime juice
- 1/4 cup milk
- Canola oil
- 2 tsp red pepper flakes
- 1 tsp coriander powder
- 1 tbsp smoked paprika
- 1 tbsp taco seasoning
- 1 tsp salt
- Boneless skinless chicken thighs
- 1-18oz can black beans, drained and rinsed
- 1 cup frozen corn
- Flour tortillas (you can use corn too but I prefer flour)
- Mexican blend cheese
- Sriracha to taste
Add the tomatillos, garlic, jalapenos, poblano pepper, cilantro, green onions, lime juice, and milk to a blender. Pulse until the verde sauce is at your desired consistency. Heat oil in a pan and add the red pepper flakes, coriander powder, smoked paprika, salt, and taco seasoning until fragrant. Add the chicken thighs and cook through, flipping in between. Remove the chicken thighs from the pan and add the corn and black beans to the same pan to pick up the yummy seasonings and bits and such. Cook for a couple minutes, then your enchiladas are ready to assemble.
Preheat the oven to 350 deg F. Fill the flour tortillas with a little verde sauce, cheese, chicken, and beans+corn. Add verde sauce to the bottom of the baking tray. Roll the tortillas and place them seam down on the tray. Cover with more verde sauce and lots of cheese (LOTS) and a bit or Sriracha. Pop in the oven for 5 minutes or so until the cheese melts and the sauce is warmed through. Serve immediately.