I’m sure today you’ve had your fill of turkey. If you’re like me you don’t want to see another turkey, much less eat it, for months (probably until next Thanksgiving!). But like me you more than likely have lots of leftover turkey. Okay, maybe you’d like to repeat last night’s Thanksgiving dinner just one more time, but I’m sure by the weekend you’ll desperately trying to figure out what to do with the rest of the turkey.
Don’t toss it! Sure you can make turkey sandwiches, and soups, but here’s a way to turn that leftover Thanksgiving turkey into something that doesn’t even remind you of the meal you stuffed yourself with on Thanksgiving. I make this yummy Turkey Enchilada Bake. It’s delicious and keto friendly too, just in case you’ve decided to start that Keto Diet after the holiday. In fact you’ll love it so much you’ll probably make it through out the year without using leftover turkey!
I love Mexican food but Enchiladas were never one of my favorites. I tried to love it, but something about it just wasn’t working for me. It took me a while, but I finally realized what wasn’t working was the canned Enchilada Sauces I found at the grocery store.
Sure there are several brands out there, in fact it got quite confusing. But no matter which sauce I bought it simply didn’t taste good to me or for that matter the rest of the family didn’t find them that great either. They much preferred the Enchilada Sauce they would order from the Mexican restaurant. There aren’t that many really good Mexican restaurants in Honolulu so I had to find a way to make homemade Enchiladas just as good as the ones we found at the few restaurants we like. And since we didn’t care for the canned sauce then clearly the only option was homemade sauce.
So I started trying to figure out just how to make Enchilada Sauce and the first thing I learned is that there are not tomatoes in any way shape or form in Enchilada Sauce. I was surprised and so was everyone in the family! That’s right no tomatoes in Enchilada Sauce! Of course I’m talking about the RED Enchilada Sauce, I’ve yet to make the green variety. But I will and once I get it right I’ll share that too!
So what’s in Enchilada Sauce you ask? Chicken or Veggie Stock (the veggie stock is great if you want a vegan version), Roux, and spices. That’s it! And to make it even better it’s super easy to make, it takes less than half an hour! I make a pot of it and store the sauce in jars in the fridge. The longer it sits in the fridge the better the sauce tastes. So now my fridge is always stocked with homemade Enchilada Sauce along with my Marinara Sauce! I spend a morning once a month to re-stock, that way I’ll always have my favorite 2 sauces on hand.
You can use this Enchilada Sauce on anything you want. Pour it over your favorite meats and roll in tortillas for delicious enchiladas or use it in a casserole. I use it on my Keto friendly Chicken or Steak Enchiladas, they come out great. Whatever you use it on it will turn out delicious!
4 Tbs. Olive Oil
1/4 Cup Flour
1/2 Cup Chili Powder
1 Tbs. Garlic Powder
1 Tbs. Cumin Powder
1 Tbs. Dried Oregano
1 Quart Chicken or Vegetable Stock
Salt to taste
Heat Olive Oil in a medium saucepan
Whisk in flour to make a blond roux, be careful not to burn the flour
Whisk in the spices except the salt
Slowly pour in the stock while whisking to blend the spices and roux in to it
Add salt to taste
Simmer for about 10 minutes or until slightly thickened
Use with your favorite meats or veggies or pour into jars and store in the fridge.
This recipe will make enough to fill 1 quart jar and almost 1 pint jar. If storing sauce pour into jars and cool before covering with a tight lid and placing in the fridge.
South West or Tex Mex Egg Rolls are featured appetizers at many well known restaurant chains. It’s one of my favorites at Chili’s and Cheesecake Factory where I order them all every time we choose to dine at one of them. I know they’re considered appetizers but most of the time I order them as my main course, that way I get a whole plate of them to myself!
I’ve actually seen them frozen and ready to fry at several grocery stores. They’re marketed as the “original” Chili’s or Cheesecake Factory Egg Rolls. They also carry a hefty price tag which I’m not willing to pay for something I still have to fry!
But I can definitely make these yummy crunchy rolls of Tex Mex goodness at home. It’s super easy! I usually make a big batch and freeze some for later, they freeze very well.
Now there are 2 versions of this Egg Roll, one uses actual Egg Roll wrapper usually found at any Asian Market, and the other rolls the filling in flour tortillas. The former makes for a delicate crispy egg roll as the wrapper is a thin pastry just like the egg rolls you’ll find at most Asian restaurants. The latter has a different look and crunch as the tortilla is a much thicker wrapper. Either way they’re delicious!
I use the frozen grilled chicken strips to make my egg rolls, but you can make your one cooked chicken to use in this recipe. This recipe makes a large pot, whatever I don’t roll into egg rolls I make into bowls by serving it over a bowl of Mexican Rice and Refried Beans.
To freeze roll the filling in egg roll wrapper or tortillas and place in freezer bags. Label and freeze for up to 3 months.
These egg rolls are delicious dipped in a Creamy Avocado Sauce or topped with Pico De Gallo. The recipe for the sauce is included at the bottom of the egg roll recipe.
South West Egg Rolls
1 Tsp. Olive Oil
1 Pkg. Frozen Grilled Chicken Strips, thawed and diced
1/2 Onion, diced
2 Tbs. Minced Garlic
1 Green Bell Pepper, diced
1 Tomato, diced and patted dry with paper towel.
1 Can Black Beans, drained
1 Can Corn Kernels, drained
1 – 2 Tbs. Cumin, adjust to taste
1 – 2 Tbs. Chili Powder, adjust to taste
1 Tbs. Salt
1 Bunch Fresh Cilantro, coarsely chopped
1 Cup Shredded Cheddar/Jack Cheese
1 Pkg. Frozen Egg Roll Wrappers or 8″ Flour Tortillas
Oil for frying
Heat Olive Oil in large pan.
Saute onions about 1 minute or until they start to turn translucent.
Add garlic and continue to saute.
Add peppers and cook until peppers start to get a bit soft.
Add Chicken, beans, and corn.
Add in Cumin, Chili Powder, and Salt. Mix until well combined.
Add Tomatoes and cook until any liquid in the pan starts to thicken.
Add Cilantro and cook until it starts to wilt.
Remove from heat and stir in cheese until it melts.
Set aside and prepare your wrappers.
Place a heaping tablespoon in the center of your wrapper and spread into a line across.
Roll the filling in the wrapper burrito style.
Heat about 2″ of oil in a frying pan or use a deep fryer if you have one.
Fry rolls in oil until golden brown.
Cut each roll in half diagonally and serve hot with Avocado Dipping Sauce.
Creamy Avocado Dipping Sauce
1 Cup Whipped Cream Cheese
1/2 Cup Sour Cream
1 Bunch Fresh Cilantro finely chopped
1 Ripe Avocado mashed
1/2 Tsp. Garlic Powder
1/4 Tsp. Chili Powder
Mix all ingredients together and refrigerate until ready to serve.
As many of you know I absolutely love Mexican food and am always on the lookout for restaurants that serve authentic Mexican cuisine. That’s not easy to find where I live in Hawaii. Although a few places have popped up that meet our family’s expectations most of the time I end up making our favorite Mexican dishes at home.
A family favorite is Carne Asada, typical for a family of carnivores I guess. In restaurants it’s sometimes used as the filling for burritos and enchiladas, or a topping for nachos; and it mostly appears on the mean as steak.
Since it’s a favorite of ours I always make it and use it to fill tacos, burritos, and my all time favorites Chimichangas and Flautas which are really just fried versions of burritos and taquitos.
I use flank or skirt steak to make my Carne Asada, and in a pinch flap meat works well too. Those cuts of meat aren’t the most tender but marinating it overnight makes it not only tender but tasty as well. I usually make a big batch of Carne Asada and freeze some to use later. I pan fry the meat and freeze half. It heats up really well.
You can also grill the Flank Steak instead of pan frying it, but to grill it don’t cut up the meat before marination. Marinate the whole slab, grill it, then cut it up to fill your tacos, burritos, or whatever.
So here’s the recipe!
2 Tbs. Soy Sauce
3 Tbs. freshly squeezed lime juice
2 Tbs. Olive Oil
2 Tbs. Minced Garlic
1/4 Cup Fresh Cilantro roughly chopped
2 Tsp. Chili Powder
1 Tsp. Ground Cumin
1 Tsp. Ground Oregano
2 Lbs. Flank or Skirt Steak – cut into 1/2″ strips or if you are grilling don’t cut it up marinate the whole slab
Mix all the ingredients except the meat in a bowl.
Place meat in a large ziplock bag and pour marinade over it.
Close bag and knead the meat to distribute the marinade evenly.
When you’re ready to cook it heat 1 Tbs. Olive Oil in skillet.
Place the meat into hot oil and pan fry to desired doneness.
Discard the marinade.
When meat is cooked use it to make nachos or fill your tortillas, taco shells or bowls, depending on what you are making.
Serve with garnishes such as pico de gallo, sour cream, shredded cheese, guacamole, fresh diced tomatos, lettuce, salsa, etc.
As I’ve said so many times the secret to well seasoned meat dishes start with the meat rub or seasoning. The same holds true for one of my favorite types of cuisine, Mexican or Tex-Mex.
Whether you’re making fajitas, steaks, or taco and burrito filling if you’re filling that tortilla with any type of meat you’re going to need a meat rub. That’s where my Tex-Mex Meat Rub comes in handy.
I usually make a large batch, large meaning enough to fill a pint sized Mason Jar, to season chicken, beef, and even seafood for any kind to Tex-Mex dish I want to make. That way I don’t have to make the mix every time I feel like having flautas or nachos or whatever. I always have enough to rub on my meats; assuming I don’t forget to replenish the jar!
This Tex-Mex Meat Rub is super easy to whip up and makes your meat filling taste incredible! I use just enough pepper in it to give the meat a little kick, but you can adjust the “hotness” according to your preference just by increasing or decreasing the amount of pepper powder you use. Once you’re done just store the rub in a sealed jar and place it in a cool dry place, like your pantry. The Tex-Mex Meat Rub should keep about 3 months, if you can manage not to use it all the first week!
To use the rub you’ll need 1 Tbs. of Tex-Mex Meat per pound of meat. Make a paste with it by adding it to 1 Tbs. Olive Oil and 1/2 Tbs. Apple Cider Vinegar. This is enough to season 3 large chicken breasts.
Rub the paste all over your meat then place the meat in a covered dish or ziplock bag in the fridge. Let the meat marinate in the rub for at least an hour but no more than 24 hours. Overnight works great!
Depending on the dish you are trying to create you can either slice the meat into strips for fajitas or leave it whole and shred after cooking. Then cook the meat the way you want, fry, grill, bake, or in an Instant Pot!
Use the seasoned meat for nachos, fajitas, burritos, tacos, or whatever you like.