Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Black Bean Enchiladas with Spicy Squash Sauce

Of all the things I've made in an effort to use up ridiculous amount of squash puree in my freezer, this has to be my favorite. Sadly, it's not because of the inherent squashiness of the dish, but the way in which it brings all the other ingredients together so perfectly. Squash puree is a fantastic shortcut to a lush sauce, able to blend with all manner of ingredients without dominating the flavor. Though this may not be the kind of authentic fare that will show up in a Rick Bayless cookbook, there's no denying that the silky and subtly sweet squash is an ideal foil for spicy jalapenos and chili powder. Add a hearty black bean filling and a savory frosting of cheese and you've got a crowd-pleasing meal as suitable to Meatless Monday as it is to a celebratory feast. Even better, this meal freezes wonderfully, so make up a double batch to be ready to feed the masses any time.

Black Bean Enchiladas with Spicy Squash Sauce
adapted from Martha Stewart
serves 4

One 15-ounce can seasoned black beans, drained and rinsed
1/2 cup fresh corn or frozen corn, thawed
6 scallions, thinly sliced
Coarse salt and ground pepper
1 1/2 cups butternut or other winter squash puree
4 cloves garlic, peeled
1 jalapeno chile, quartered (remove ribs and seeds for less heat, if desired)
1 teaspoon chili powder
8 corn tortillas (6-inch)
1 cup grated sharp or smoked cheddar cheese (4 ounces)

1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees. In a medium bowl, combine beans, corn, and scallions. Season generously with salt and pepper; set aside.

2. In a blender, puree squash, garlic, jalapeno, chili powder, 1 1/2 cups water, 1 teaspoons salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper until smooth (hold top firmly as blender will be quite full). Taste sauce and season to taste with additional salt and pepper. Pour 1 cup of sauce in the bottom of an 9x13-inch baking dish.

3. Lay tortillas on work surface; mound black bean mixture on half of each tortilla, dividing evenly. Roll up tortillas; place, seam side down, in baking dish.

4. Pour remaining sauce on top; sprinkle with cheese. Place dish on a baking sheet; bake until cheese is golden and sauce is bubbling, 25 to 30 minutes. Let cool 5 minutes before serving.

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