Veg*n Cooking and Other Random Musings: Anasazi and Millet Quesadillas with New Mexican Red Chile Sauce and Avocado 'Cream'

Monday, April 14, 2008

Anasazi and Millet Quesadillas with New Mexican Red Chile Sauce and Avocado 'Cream'

What a mouthful!
This meal was absolutely wonderful. I really, really like Anasazi beans, and encourage anyone who can get a hold of some to try them, they are fantastic. However, if you cannot locate Anasazi beans, but would still like to make this meal, a combination of pinto and kidney, or small red beans would work well in place of the Anasazi.

We really like millet, but don’t use it nearly enough, it found a wonderful application in this dish, if you can’t find or don’t like millet, quinoa or rice would work just fine too. I really liked how the nuttiness of the millet worked with the sweetness of the corn, the flavor of the shiitake mushrooms, the hotness of the peppers, and the mildness of the beans, all around this was a great dish and we’ll definitely have it again.

Also, I used homemade tofu sour cream as the base of my avocado ‘cream’. Brett makes the tofu sour cream and does a much better job than I do, so we’ll keep it that way. Both Brett and I agree, in sauces and baked goods, silken tofu is perfectly acceptable, however when comes to using regular old tofu in main dishes, we do have well, one dish I can think of offhand that we like tofu in (Tofu and Potato Burritos). Anyways, if you wanted to make the avocado ‘cream’ but didn’t want to make the tofu sour cream yourself, I’m sure using one of those premade tubs of it would work fine too, I’ve never had it though, so I can’t vouch for it.

A couple of notes:
The New Mexican Red Chile Sauce is not spicy; the pepper sauce is actually oddly sweet. Unfortunately, I don’t think any other peppers could be used in place of the New Mexican chilies here, but I was able to find a bag of dried at the grocery store here in Columbia, so I imagine many people in the United States would be able to find them somewhere. I made this sauce in the morning to allow ample time for the flavors to blend.

New Mexican Red Chile Sauce is a sauce to be used sparingly. While it isn’t spicy it is very flavorful in the way that Tabasco and Louisiana Hot Sauce are. Brett liked it in that he thought it was more versatile than those other sauces as it would work in Mexican, Southern, on pizzas, sandwiches, etc. Next time I might try making this using a different vinegar.

A dried red New Mexican chile.

Red New Mexican Chile Sauce:

Makes about 1 1/2 cups sauce.

12 dried red New Mexican chile peppers, stems removed
3 cloves of garlic, peeled
1 cup apple cider vinegar
1/3 cup hot water
1 tbsp good olive oil
a few pinches of dried cilantro
dash Mexican oregano
couple of dashes of cumin
dash paprika
couple of dashes of salt

Rehydrate the 1/2 the chilies in the vinegar for about an hour, rehydrate the other half in hot water for the same period of time.

Blend all ingredients in a food processor until smooth.

Refrigerate for a couple of hours to allow flavors to blend.

This sauce freezes well, though because of all the vinegar, it will keep for quite some time in the fridge, at least a couple of months.

Quesadillas, Enchiladas, Tacos, Tostadas, Burritos or Burros, Fajitas

Chiles Japones.

Avocado 'Cream'

Makes about 1 cup Avocado 'Cream'
1 ripe avocado, cut in large chunks
juice of 1/2 a lime
1 clove garlic, peeled
4 Chiles Japones minced (I left the seeds in two of them) or cayenne pepper

Blend in a food processor until smooth.

Anasazi and Millet Quesadilla with New Mexican Red Chile Sauce and Avocado 'Cream'

Serves 2

Cooking Time: 1 hour - I already had the beans and millet prepared in advance (including sauce preparation, 2 hours, much of it idle)

2 cups anasazi beans, cooked
1 cup millet, cooked
1/2 cup corn, cooked
1 cup shiitake mushrooms, minced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 red onion, diced
1 poblano pepper, roasted and sliced
3 serrano peppers, roasted and sliced
1 jalapeno pepper, roasted and sliced
ground coriander
chipotle chili powder
vegan Monterey jack (optional)

New Mexican Red Chile Sauce
avocado cream

Heat a few tablespoons of water in a small skillet. Add mushrooms, garlic and onions and cook until soft about 10 minutes.

In a medium bowl, toss warmed beans and millet with the spices.

Once veggies done, drain any excess water and add to the cooked corn.

Layer bean and millet mixture, corn and mushroom mixture, roasted veggies, vegan jack, and a little bit of New Mexican Red Chile Sauce in a warmed tortilla.

if desired and top with avocado 'cream'.

Super yummy.

'Til next time.


Anonymous said...

Wow. These look amazing! I LOVE Mexican food...

Calimaryn said...

Oh wow! I have been seeing packages of dried chilies here in Connecticut and wondering if I should buy some and then what to do with them. This is perfect! Thanks so much.

And your avocado cream? *drool!*

Happy Herbivore! said...

avocado cream? I FRAKKIN LOVE YOU! (MORE)

ChickPea said...

That avocado cream sounds amazing!! I love anything even remotely related to avocados...

Alice (in Veganland) said...

Since I read your blog I just can't stop thinking about Mexican food. What have you done to me?!

Bianca said...

I love millet, but I don't use it often enough either. I'll have to try this, although I may have to sub the beans...I've never seen those around here. Do you think they'd be available at a Mexican market? There's one right by my house.

ChocolateCoveredVegan said...

That is some gorgeous bright red sauce!

pleasantly plump vegan said...

gorgeous color on that chili sauce

Anonymous said...

So many flavors melding together!

I really want to try some of your dishes, but never get a chance to. I think that I'm going to have to REALLY set time aside to make your dishes, as I want to make them as close to how you prepare them as possible.

I think the first thing I need to do is soak the beans in advance and then work from there. We'll see how things goes tmw.

Jennifer said...

Ve*ganChick - Thanks! We are a bit fond of it in my house as well. ;-)

Calimaryn - You SHOULD. Each chile has it's own flavor, play around with them!

Thanks so much!

Happy Herbivore - :-)!!

Chickpea - Thank you, it was good, and just spicy enough. We are fairly addicted to avocados in my house. We've taken to just buying the bag of 4 organic California avocados. We have no problem eating them as they ripen. :-)

Alice - Hahahahahaha! Well I hope that's a good thing. Your quesadillas looked awesome, I think you'll do just fine cooking Mexican yourself.

Bianca - Millet has a flavor all it's own. You might be able to find these beans at a Mexican market, that would be my best guess as to the first place you'd want to check. I found mine online from Purcell Mountain Farms, loved them so much, that I'm ordering a 25 lb bag of organic Anasazi beans from a co-op called Blue Planet.

Chocolate Covered - Thanks! I thought the color was beautiful.

Pleasantly - Thanks!

Leng - You know, it's the sauce that takes the most amount of time out of all the things I make. That's why I make extra and freeze it. Then when I want it again, it takes 30-45 minutes, tops. I work full-time and don't have an endless amount of time to cook. I also have the luxury of Brett still being in college, he has time to cook beans, rice, make tofu sour cream, roast and mash a sweet potato, etc. during the day while I'm at work, which saves a lot of time as well.

Be creative with the recipes! Work with what you have and the flavors you like. That's whats so great about this type of food, it's very versatile.

Soaking the beans! It's something I literally have to leave notes attached to the container of beans to remember to do.

Marisa L. B. said...

Looks delicious! Your blog is making me sooo hungry and it's still over 2 hours til lunch!!!

Kumquat Peekapoo said...

Looks awesome as usual! I think it's so cute that you spread you avacado/avacado cream on top of the tortilla.

Anonymous said...

Hey Jennifer,

Oh I didn't mean to say that you spend all day in the kitchen. I remember you mentioning that you were out of school from earlier posts. It's just that cooking with dry beans is very very new to me. Also I don't cook Mexican food often.

I think I'm more intimidated than unprepared. I want to leave time for any errors, since this is new to me. haha am I making this sound stressful?

Brett seems like a great guy. I wish my man would soak my beans for me. LoL.

Jennifer said...


No worries at all. I was just noting the things I do to make these meals not take as long to prepare. I acutally do, at times, put in a few hours in the kitchen over the weekend, making extra stuff for freezing so these yummy meals can be accessible during the week.

Cooking beans from dry is something it takes a bit of time to get used to. It takes longer than a lot of people would think to soak and cook beans. And it seems to vary every time.

Well, Brett doesn't work, he just attends classes, so he has a bit more free time and feels that this is his way to contribute. He also cleans the kitty boxes, does all the dishes, goes to the grocery store in the middle of the week when we need something, laundry, house cleaning, etc. I still help with dishes from time to time, but haven't done laundry in at least 6 months.

Jennifer said...

Oh, and don't be intimidated, you'll do fine!

And if you ever have any questions, feel free to email me, I wouldn't mind helping you out in any way I can. :-)

Lisa (Show Me Vegan) said...

I'm also really excited to try your Avocado Cream. The entire dish sounds so good, but a favorite Avocado Ranch dressing at a local restaurant is now off limits to me, so I can't wait to try your version.

T said...

That avacado cream looks fantastic! I'm going to try it asap.

And you know, I was in the grocery store the other day and inspired to pick up some crazy new beans because of you! Thanks!

ChocolateCoveredVegan said...

Oooh, DO try Mexican with chopsticks! Using chopsticks in a Mexican restaurant would probably earn you even MORE stares than when you tell people you're a vegan :o).

Yes, it was quite wonderful to stand so close to Brad Pitt... you should see the picture I have with Johnny Depp! Alas, he's wax as well.

Lizzy said...

Holy crap you're killing me! =O Please please please open up a vegan mexican diner chain around the world!!!
This looks so wonderful and colorful! And I love the avocado cream idea - fantastic!!!!

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