When we go to a Mexican Restaurant there is one item that stands out more than anything, and as servers go by and walk around, those yummy looking things are called, “Enchiladas.” An enchilada is simply a corn tortilla that is rolled around meats and cheese. Enchiladas evolved into a myriad of distinctive recipes with unique ingredients and sauces. Authentic fillings might include any kinds of meat or seafood. Cheese, vegetables and potatoes, crowned with lettuce. Sour cream and maybe olives, onions, peppers, and fresh herbs. It is an extremely versatile dish and most find it quite tasty. But did you ever sit there and wonder where enchiladas come from? What ingredients do we need to make some delicious homemade enchiladas? Do you prefer red or green enchiladas?
There is much evidence to suggest that enchiladas come from the Mayans. The dish was first associated with the region of Mexico by the Yucatan in Pre-Columbian days. Corn tortillas were a staple of the Mayan people and there is evidence that the first enchiladas were tortillas that had fish rolled in it. When Spanish Conquistadors made their way to the Western Hemisphere they documented the variety of foods the indigenous people ate. Tortillas, made from flattened corn bread were originally called tlaxcalli; however it was the Spanish Conquistadors that named it the tortilla. Throughout the later centuries, the Mexican people continued to enjoy this dish. The enchilada can be found in a wide variety of cook books dating all the way back to the first Mexican cook book published in 1831 called, “El Cocinero Mexicano.” Over the years, many Mexicans immigrated to the US, bringing with them their culture that included their delicious foods. Today, the enchilada and other great Mexican foods are continuing to grow in popularity making them an all-time favorite dish. It even has its own special day, 5 de Mayo is National Enchilada Day!
Now lets’ talk about what ingredients are needed to make your homemade enchiladas.
Ingredients for Homemade Enchiladas
Chicken, Beef, Shrimp, Pork, Vegetarian
Tortillas- preferably corn tortillas
Cheese- any favorite shredded cheese, queso cotija, Monterey jack cheese, queso ranchero, chihuahua, Oaxaca, Muenster, Manchego, etc …
Fillings- beans, cheese, roasted vegetables, tomatoes, avocado, additional chilis, peppers
Toppings- chopped fresh cilantro, sour cream, diced onions….you name it!
Experiment and have fun making your homemade enchiladas; and if you don’t feel like making them today because your too tired from work or don’t have all the ingredients needed, no problem! Here at Limon y Sal we have quite a few enchiladas to choose from, for ex: Enchilada de Mole, Salmon Enchilada, Enchiladas de Mariscos (Seafood Enchiladas), Enchiladas de Camaron (shrimp) a la Diabla, Enchiladas de Pollo (chicken) con Mole, Enchiladas-Suiza, and Portobello Spinach Enchilada. So many to choose from, and all very delicious.
Green Enchiladas or Red Enchiladas
Green enchilada sauce is generally a mixture of green tomatillos and green chilies, along with ingredients like onion, garlic, vinegar, and other spices. The tomatillo, also known as the Mexican husk tomato, is a staple in Mexican cuisine. Tomatillo, has a slightly herbal taste and is somewhat fruity and tart in flavor. Most green enchiladas sauces use green chilis, which include
jalapenos and serranos, tipping off the spicy scale. As with any color chili, green sauces range from mild to hot depending on the chili.
Red enchiladas, on the other hand, is typically made from a variety of red chilies, vinegar, onions, garlic and spices. Some quick versions of red enchiladas sauces may use red tomato sauce or paste as a base. But remember just like the green sauce, red can range from being mild to super spicy! It all depends on the chili.
Now, the question is, what should I order? Red or Green? Both have different types of chilis that make each sauce have a unique flavor. Rather than overthink the color, consider the type of enchilada you’re havin. Beef, Chicken, Vegetable or Shrimp? And ask yourself what type of sauce would pair nicely with that. You may want to experiment a little if you’re cooking at home. Alternatively, if you’re eating out ask the server to recommend a sauce for the meal your ordering.
Now, we’ve have given you a brief history of where the enchiladas came from, ingredients needed for you to make homemade enchiladas, and which would you prefer, green or red enchiladas? There’s no doubt that that these rolling tortillas dipped in sauce would be an all-time favorite for many around the world. Okay, so who’s ready to join us here at Limon y Sal, to try one of many delicious enchiladas we have to offer!! Come, stop by! See you there!