Tofu Mole Enchiladas

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Base:

1 packet mole mix (or if you’re feeling patient, make it yourself)

12 corn or flour tortillas

1 block firm tofu, pressed

1 can whole peeled tomatoes

1 medium block of sharp cheddar cheese, grated

Olive oil

 

Veggies:

1 bell pepper, roasted, peeled, and diced

1 large potato or 4 small ones, diced

1 medium onion, diced

3-5 cloves garlic, smashed and diced

1 small eggplant (aubergine sized), diced

1/2 bunch cilantro, stemmed and chopped

12 or so pickled jalapeños

 

Spices:

Chili powder

Cumin

Coriander

Raw ground chili (smoky, not spicy, if you can find it)

Salt

 

Cooking:

Press your block of tofu before you prep the meal, it should be done by the time you’re ready for it. Assuming you got the packet of mole mix, start with that first.

 

Mole:

Puree your can of tomatoes. Put the puree in a small saucepan and stir in the packet of mole mix. You might even want a dash of salt to help it along. Cover it and simmer at the lowest heat you’ve got.  By about the time you add the tofu to the enchilada filling, turn off the heat and let the mole cool.

 

Enchilada Filling:

First thing’s first: get that pepper roasting. Preheat your oven to 450° or fire up that boiler. Slice the bell pepper in half, pole to pole, but do no remove the seeds or stem. Drop a spot of olive oil on each side and spread it around the surface with your finger. Go ahead and put them in the oven on the rack, or on a cookie sheet. If you’re using the oven, use the top rack.  Keep it hot after you’ve taken it out because in about 10 minutes you’re going to put some enchiladas in there.

 

Next, heat about 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a medium non-stick or well-seasoned cast-iron skillet on medium-high heat. Sauté onions until they begin to brown and then add garlic and sauté for another minute. At this point, lower the heat and add the spices. I never measure, but rest assured you are going to need more than a few good dashes from each because the tofu is going to suck up the flavor. I recommend more cumin over anything else. Stir in the spices so that they cover every thing. If the mix is looking too dry, add a bit more oil. Next add the potatoes, roasted bell pepper (now peeled, seeded, and diced), and eggplant. As the potatoes begin to soften a small bit, unwrap the tofu and break it apart over the skillet with your hands and then mix it in, breaking it up more with a wooden spoon. Last, add the cilantro. Stir until the entire mix is well blended. Salt, taste, season, taste, salt, taste, repeat until it tastes like something you’d want to feed the Obamas.

 

 

Construction:

In a regular sized baking pan spread a thin layer of mole sauce, just enough to cover the bottom. If you’re using corn tortillas, I recommend giving them a bath in a skillet with a thin layer of hot corn oil in it to make them pliable. If you’re using flour, do nothing special. Take your tortilla and spread a few spoons (regular eatin’ spoon is what I used) of enchilada mix inside, then a layer of the grated cheese, roll closed, and place seam-side down in the baking pan. Do this until you run out of space or filling.  When your pan is full, spread the rest of the mole on top and then the rest of your cheese. Garnish with the pickled jalapeños and bake until the cheese on top is well melted, and a tiny bit burned. This won’t take long, maybe only 10 minutes.

 

Presentation:

Serve with cold Mexican beer.

 

End Notes:

Like every recipe, this one flourishes under creativity. They don’t sell a lot of the things good for the life of an enchilada in Japan so I could not include them in this dish. I recommend experimenting with roasted poblano peppers, goat cheese, feta, fresh lime, fresh roasted corn, home-made mole, tortillas, chili powder, etc. As always, break the rules if you can’t follow them.

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