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Quick Beef Enchiladas with Salsa Verde

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Serves 4

  • by Liz Pearson from Fine Cooking
    Issue 98

You don't have to sacrifice authenticity for speed with these quick and flavorful enchiladas. And an easy, homemade salsa verde adds a tangy kick to this hearty dish. 

  • Kosher salt
  • 1 lb. tomatillos (about 15 medium), husked and rinsed
  • 3 jalapeños, stemmed and halved lengthwise (seeded, if you like)
  • 1 large yellow onion, half cut into 4 wedges, half chopped
  • 2/3 cup roughly chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1-1/2 Tbs. canola oil
  • 1 lb. lean ground beef
  • 2 tsp. ground cumin
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 8 6-inch corn tortillas
  • 1-1/2 cups shredded Monterey Jack cheese

Bring a medium pot of salted water to a boil. Add the tomatillos, jalapeños, and onion wedges; cover and simmer until tender, about 10 minutes. Drain well and transfer to a blender along with 1/3 cup of the cilantro. Purée until just slightly chunky and season to taste with salt.

Meanwhile, heat 1 Tbs. of the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the beef, chopped onion, cumin, 1 tsp. salt, and 1/4 tsp. pepper and cook, stirring occasionally to break up the meat, until cooked through, about 5 minutes. Stir 1/2 cup of the salsa verde into the beef.

Position a rack about 6 inches from the broiler and heat the broiler to high. Grease a 9x13-inch metal or ceramic baking dish with the remaining 1/2 Tbs. oil.

Wrap the tortillas in a few slightly damp paper towels and microwave on high until warm, 30 to 45 seconds. Working with one tortilla at a time, spoon some of the beef mixture down the center of the tortilla and sprinkle with 1 Tbs. of the cheese. Roll up snugly and transfer to the prepared baking dish, seam side down. Repeat with the remaining tortillas and beef mixture. Pour the remaining salsa verde over the enchiladas and sprinkle with the remaining cheese. Broil until golden brown and bubbly, 3 to 5 minutes. Garnish with the remaining cilantro and serve.

Serving Suggestions

Serve with Mexican Tomato Rice & Beans or a Jícama, Avocado, Radish & Orange Salad with Cilantro.

nutrition information (per serving):
Calories (kcal): 580; Fat (g): 31; Fat Calories (kcal): 280; Saturated Fat (g): 12; Protein (g): 36; Monounsaturated Fat (g): 12; Carbohydrates (g): 40; Polyunsaturated Fat (g): 3.5; Sodium (mg): 790; Cholesterol (mg): 110; Fiber (g): 6;

Photo: Scott Phillips

One of those tricky ones to rate: probably only 3 stars as written, but easy to up to a 5. I used ground turkey instead of beef, and added garlic, corn and zucchini to the mix. The salsa is excellent, and I'd definitely recommend making with the tomato rice & beans (which I'll make again).

I loved how fast and easy this was but not full of flavor. The beef was silky but too simple for me. Maybe more cumin and salt? The salsa verde was surprisingly easy to make. I served it with chicken enchiladas with red sauce from Cooks Illustrated and all my guests preferred the other dish which had more complex flavors. All that said, I will still definitely try this again.

Easy & delicious! I will make this again.

Delicious! even my 4 year old gobbled it up. Followed recipe exact but using half corn, half flour tortillas. I might add some beans to it next time, maybe some veg too. Recipe is a good jumping off point but you could pretty much put anything in them. The salsa verde was tangy, not spicy. Yummy!

Great sauce!!! I made it lasagna style using flour tortillas, instead of rolling, and I topped it with crushed chips, cheese, and more sauce. Under the broiler for a few minutes and looked beautiful! Will definitely make again!

It is fine to make a comment but not justifying the reason makes it null and void. It may aid to those who wish to try the recipe in perhaps adjusting seasonings. I have yet to try it and I refer to the comments to assist me in determining my adding this recipe to my cookbook. It sounds good. Now I will definitely try it, I always invite friends and we judge if it is a keeper or tweek it slightly.

Did not like it at all!

Wow! Really quick and really delicious. My only quibble is with the serving size--my husband and I polished off the entire dish, so definitely double the recipe if making it for more people.

Wonderful! Just the right amount of spice! My husband loved it!

Excellent! Spicy and fresh.

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