Rejuvenation

Today’s post is going to be quick and easy. You see, you may notice a few changes on the blog today – a new look, new features and finally…index pages! As most bloggers know, changes like that are not so quick and easy. They take time…lots of time. But we had some this weekend and we figured it was time to liven things up a bit around here, make some improvements, get around to the things we’ve been procrastinating. Frankly, we were ready for a little rejuvenation. So was this recipe…

Seafood enchiladas have long been a favorite summertime dish for us. My grandpa passed along a recipe to me years ago after clipping it from a magazine in the lobby of the hospital where he volunteered. He saw it, knew my affection for seafood, and thought I would like it. He was right. (He found at least 50 recipes…perhaps he was trying to tell me something.) Well, my cooking skills have much improved since then and I opted to scrap the pre-mixed seasoning packet and put my own spin on these babies.

cream cheese enchiladas

The original recipe calls for regular cream cheese, butter and a ranch dressing seasoning packet. I typically swap out the regular cream cheese for reduced fat cream cheese. I’ve even used the fat-free or a mixture of the two and the results don’t vary at all. I also usually switch out the butter for oil. Now this time, having worked my way around a kitchen a bit more these past few years, I decided to bag the ranch seasoning mix and all its sodium for my own mixture of spices. So in place of the ranch dressing mixture I combined parsley, dill, chives, salt, pepper, cumin, garlic powder and onion powder.

enchiladas

As for the recipe, it’s simple. Mix the cream cheese and spices with a bit of milk in a large bowl. Reserve about a 1/4 of the mixture in a small bowl to the side. Next saute the cayenne, onion and garlic in a skillet. Toss in the crab meat, sliced black olives and Salsa Verde. The original recipe called for green chilies, but we’re rejuvenating, remember. :) (Next time, I’ll make my own salsa too….) Cook this mixture for a few minutes and then add it to the large bowl with the cream cheese and spices. Fold in some Colby Jack cheese and spread the mixture evenly in the center of about 8 to 12 tortilla shells.

Crab and dill enchiladas

Next roll the enchiladas, place them in a baking dish seam-side down and top with a bit more Salsa Verde, the small bowl of cream cheese mix and some more Colby Jack. Bake the enchiladas covered for 25 minutes at 350F. Finally, uncover and bake for another 5 to 10 minutes. And you’re done…see, quick and easy.

Seafood Enchiladas

Mike and I have enjoyed these enchiladas numerous times over the years, but this was the kids’ first experience with them. I was a little skeptical. I knew they would enjoy the crab, but I wasn’t so sure about the salsa and dill flavor. Well, I should have remembered Mr. N’s affection for ranch dressing, he really liked the enchiladas and gave them 3 spoons. Miss A liked them too, but not as much as her brother. She rang in with 2 spoons. Mike and I both really enjoyed the freshened up version of the dish. I gave them 4 spoons and Mike a strong 3 spoon vote. Overall, a very successful meal. I bet Grandpa would have enjoyed them too – or at least the fact that I still make them!

Have a great week everyone. We’ll be back next week with our first recipe from our Thai cooking adventures. In the meantime, we hope you have as much fun checking out the indices as we had making them. We didn’t realize just how many states and countries we’ve visited – and just how much the kids have changed!

Print this recipe: Seafood Enchiladas

About these ads

ChefDad at the Bat

It looked extremely rocky for the Mudville nine that day;
The score stood two to four , with but one inning left to play.
So when Cooney died at second, and Burroughs did the same,
A pallor wreathed the features of the patrons of the game.

A straggling few got up to go, leaving there the rest,
With that hope that springs eternal within the human breast.
They thought, if only Casey could get a whack at that,
They’d put up even money now, with Casey at the bat.

–Ernest Lawrence Thayer, Casey at the Bat

When I was ten years old, my dad made me a deal that if I went a whole season in little league without striking out, he’d take me anywhere in the world I wanted to go for dinner. Now, at age 10 I didn’t know as much about cooking around the world as Mr. N and Miss A, and I think he figured I’d pick something familiar and local. I was, however, an adventurous eater and by about the third or fourth game of the season, I’d settled on Joe’s Stone Crabs in Miami. I’d never been there, but my dad would have occasion to travel there back then, and he always raved about it. In retrospect, he probably did some nudging to ensure that if I picked a place that would wind up costing him two plane tickets, he at least wanted stone crabs out of the deal. I also think he didn’t expect to have to pay up. Continue reading

A Moment Changes Everything

Before we wrap up our Greenlandic recipes next week, we thought we’d toss in our stateside cooking adventure for the week. We’re still focused on Hawaii…nothing like prolonging the vacation a bit, even if it is from our own kitchen.

Vacations, at least for Mike and I, are always a time of reflection. We like to spend some time looking back on what brought us to this particular point – the challenges, the joys, the decisions (both spontaneous and well-thought out ones). It’s always interesting to go back and look at the turning points we’ve faced and the random series of events that have led us to a certain place, or brought an interesting person into our lives. It’s really quite remarkable how things have a way of coming together sometimes.  Continue reading

Introducing…Shellfish

A younger Mr. N enjoying Florida’s Gulf

To Miss A that is. We held off on shellfish for both of the kids until they reached the age of three. It’s a highly allergenic food to which we have a family history, but now that she’s nearing her third birthday we’re making the slow introduction of shellfish starting with dad’s stateside pick for the night – Florida.

Dad really wanted to make alligator bites tonight, but unfortunately (Read: Shwoo!), we couldn’t find alligator. So we decided to use this as an opportunity to give Miss A a taste of shellfish – something we dined on quite a bit in the Sunshine State. We wanted a tropical kind of selection too, so we chose Coconut Shrimp with an Orange Dipping Sauce (It’s Florida – we have to incorporate oranges!). The kids, both big fans of Florida even though Miss A’s never been there (except when she pretends she’s flying there in her Nana’s kitchen cabinet), were on hand and excited to help tonight, especially with the dipping.

Continue reading