” Mom, why can’t we just have the regular meatballs? I just want the regular ones ok,” said 5 yr. old Dylan as he suffered through another attempt at mom’s vegan meatballs in tomato-chipotle sauce. I’m in the process of writing a free e-book for you guys and I’ve been testing recipes, but for some reason I decided to try and make a vegan meatball. Oh the irony, even as I’m typing it now it seems so wrong. Let’s just say Dylan has not been a fan of this cooking experiment. I think it might be time to give up and come up with a new dish for the e-book. Sigh. In the meantime here is a recipe for vegan chilaquiles rojos.
Breakfast is one of the hardest things when you first decide to go vegan or switch to a plant-based diet. Believe me, you get tired of oatmeal pretty fast, and sometimes you just want something hearty and savory. I haven’t been brave enough yet to try a tofu scramble, but I know plenty of people who enjoy a good one. That’s where these veggie chilaquiles come in. They are crunchy, spicy, and just the right amount of creamy.
The Recipe: Vegan Chilaquiles Rojos
I’ve used an almond crema to off-set the heat in the dish. Why an almond crema? I’m going to tell you a little secret. I don’t like cashew cream, gasp! I know, I’m a pretty bad vegan, but it’s just too sweet for me. I don’t think it goes very well with Mexican food, that’s why I’ve come up with my own version of crema. You can adapt this recipe and add tofu, eggs, cheese, or chicken for a richer version or keep it light with just the veggies and almond crema. Enjoy!
Vegan Chilaquiles Rojos
¼cupVegetable broth or water
½cupBlack beans,canned or home-made
4Chile guajillo,devained and seeded
2cans (14.5 oz)Diced tomatoes
24Corn tortillas,cut into triangles, 12ths
¼cupVegetable oil or almond milk
Vegetable Saute: Heat 1 tbsp. of oil in a large sauté pan to medium-high heat. Once oil is hot, add zucchini and cook for 2 minutes, stirring often. Add the tomato, and garlic, and let cook for 1 minute more. Add broccoli and ¼ cup of water and cover. Lower heat to medium and cook for 1-2 minutes or until broccoli starts to get tender. Add black beans and spinach. Stir. Season with salt and pepper and set aside.
Sauce: Boil water in a small pot. Place the dried guajillo chiles in the water and simmer for 5 min. Drain and place in the blender with the tomato, onion, garlic, and Serrano chiles. Blend until smooth. Strain. Pour finished sauce into a large pot and simmer for 5 min. Set aside.
Pour vegetable oil into a heavy-bottomed pot , enough to cover about 2 inches of the bottom. Heat to about 350F at medium-high heat. Fry the tortilla triangles in batches until golden brown. Place the fried tortillas on a paper towel lined tray and let cool.
Crema: Put the almonds, oil, garlic, lemon juice, and water and blend on high until the mixture has thickened and is smooth. About 2 min. Set aside.
Assemble: Toss the tortilla chips with the tomato sauce in the large pot where it was simmered. The tortillas will begin to soften, but we don’t want them completely soft, so plate the tortillas and sauce immediately. Top with ½ cup of the veggie mixture, chopped cilantro, avocado slices, and drizzle with the crema.
For a healthier version bake the tortilla chips in the oven at 350F for 30 min. or until crispy and golden brown.