A few years ago, when I started calling myself Cat (short for Cathy), my mom began teasing me by calling herself Mo (short for Mom). Mo is a fantastic cook. This is my take on her enchilada pie. I've given it a dose of fresh cilantro, upped the spices, lowered the fat, and topped it with tortilla chips instead of corn chips. While it bakes, the lowest layers transform into a beefy enchilada-like base, while the top layers stay crisp.
Adapted from "Cat Cora's Classics with a Twist" by Cat Cora.
- 1 pound lean ground beef
- 1 medium yellow onion, roughly chopped (about 1 cup)
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- One 10-ounce can of enchilada sauce
- One 15-ounce can of black beans, drained and rinsed
- 1 cup light sour cream
- One 4-ounce can green chilies, drained and rinsed
- ½ cup fresh cilantro, chopped
- One 12-ounce jar of green salsa
- 1 tablespoon pure chile powder
- 1 ½ teaspoons cumin
- 3 cups coarsely crushed tortilla chips, about the size of corn chips
- 2 cups grated light cheddar cheese
- 3 scallions chopped, white and tender green parts only
- 2 tablespoons chopped pickled jalapeños, or 1 tablespoon chopped fresh peppers (optional)
- 2 limes, cut into wedges, for garnish
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
In a 12-inch sauté pan cook the beef, onion, and garlic until the vegetables are soft and the beef is no longer pink, about 6-8 minutes. Lower the heat and add the enchilada sauce and black beans to the pan. Reduce the heat to low and simmer for 10 minutes.
While the meat is cooking, in a food processor or blender, blend the sour cream, green chilies, cilantro, salsa, chile powder, and cumin. Process until smooth.
Spoon half of the meat and bean mixture into the bottom of an 9-by-13-inch pan or a 3-quart casserole dish. Top with half of the crushed chips and cheese -- about 1 ½ cups of the crushed chips and 1 cup of the cheese. Cover the chips and cheese with the rest of the meat and bean mixture. Spoon on the sour cream mixture and spread it lightly so it covers the meat in an even layer. Sprinkle on the scallions and the jalapeños (if using). Top with the remaining 1 ½ cups crushed chips and the remaining cup of cheese. Cover with aluminum foil and bake for 20 minutes. Remove from the oven and serve while still warm with lime wedges for extra flavor.