Garden Enchilada Bake
Please don’t talk to me about football.
Not high school, not college or pro. Not real or fantasy, with it’s magical unicorns and leprechauns.
I don’t want to hear about backpacks and binders, not wide-ruled, college-ruled, pink pearl and #2.
(For the record, I never want to hear about #2.)
Don’t waste your breath chattering to me about stiff blue jeans and shoes that need breaking in.
And what’s all this nonsense about sleeves? I get itchy just thinking about them.
This has without a doubt been one of the most enjoyable summers of my life. There hasn’t been a moment I want to take back or a memory that I want to let go of.
You can’t make me.
Don’t tell me we’re getting the last of our zucchini or that the tree branches are getting heavy with apples.
Heaven help you if you even think about mentioning kindergarten.
La la la la la.
I’m not listening.
No football. No pencils. No sleeves.
Just me, my family and the most delicious thing we’ve eaten all summer:
Zesty quinoa and zucchini, all smothered in creamy enchilada sauce, and baked up until bubbly and melty.
Now we’re talking.
Garden Enchilada Bake
Makes 6 servings
- 1 c. quinoa, rinsed and drained
- 1 1/2 c. vegetable broth
- 1 15 oz. can organic tomato sauce, divided
- 2 1/2 t. chili powder, divided
- 1/2 t. dried oregano
- 1 zucchini, shredded and squeezed to release all excess moisture*
- 1/3 c. non-dairy (i.e. Tofutti) or organic cream cheese
- 1 clove of garlic, minced
- 1/2 t. cumin
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1 c. non-dairy (i.e. Daiya) or organic mozzarella cheese, shredded
- 1 3 oz. can sliced olives, drained
- 1 avocado, sliced
- cilantro for garnish (optional)
*Try adding whatever additional fresh veggies you have on hand, including shredded carrots, corn kernels off the cob and/or torn dark, leafy greens
Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
In a medium stockpot, combine quinoa, broth, 1/2 cup of tomato sauce, 2 teaspoons of chili powder and oregano. Bring to a boil over medium high heat. Reduce heat, stir and cover, simmering for 15-20 minutes. Removed lid and cook for an additional minute or two, or until all of the liquid has been absorbed and quinoa is fully cooked.
Add shredded zucchini, remaining tomato sauce, remaining chili powder, cream cheese, garlic and cumin and heat until fully incorporated. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
Transfer mixture to a large casserole dish (2 qt. or larger) that has been lightly spritzed with olive oil or cooking spray.
Top casserole with grated cheese and sliced olives. Bake for 25-30 minutes or until cheese is bubbly.
To brown the top of the casserole, you can switch the oven over to the broil setting for the last several minutes.
Garnish with avocado slices and fresh cilantro, if desired.
( Okay, fine. It’d work great to make two and stick one in your freezer for Fall. Whatever that is.)