Here is the totally animal free, sustainable version of my mother-in-law's delicious casserole. If you have never had an enchilada casserole (or a sad version of one) you are really missing out. Normally I avoid posting recipes that require a lot of pre-planning or prep work but I'm so very proud of this vegan version of a family favorite that I had to share. This is not hard, but it does require forethought either in already having some stuff prepped in your freezer or making some of the ingredients earlier in the day.
This is a very spicy dish so plan on making the Horchata* recipe to go with it and definitely have sour cream available for topping.
You will need:
25 to 30 small corn tortillas (please stick with the corn, flour tortillas are just not the same)
A double batch of Chorizo Seitan crumbles from 500 Vegan Recipes.
One recipe Nacho Cheezy Sauce
2 cans favorite enchilada sauce
2 cans corn
1 can black beans
3 tbsp favorite taco seasoning
oil for the pan
your favorite cold taco toppings for once it comes out of the oven. We use: shredded lettuce, sour cream, chopped tomato, green onion, black olives and white onion.
Step one is to fry up those corn tortillas on the stove so that they are nice and crunchy but not burnt. Frying should be done carefully but over a high enough heat that your food cooks very quickly without absorbing the oil. BE CAREFUL. Drain them on a cookie sheet lined with several paper towels to absorb any excess oil.
Either prep up your Chorizo from scratch (which seriously is so fast, Steen and Newman are geniuses!) or defrost them out of the freezer completely before assembling your casserole.
Get your batch of Nacho Cheezy going on the stove so it's nice and hot or take it out of the fridge and warm up on the stove so it's easy to work with for assembly. In the mean time open and drain most of the water off of the corn leaving some for in the pan. Open up your black beans and rinse them in the can. Add the corn and beans to a hot skillet with the taco seasoning of your choice. Get them nice a roasted in the spices for several minutes. They should end up looking like this:
Now it's time to assemble. :) Spray your casserole dish with some oil and then drizzle a bit of enchilada sauce in the bottom of the dish, swirling it around to coat the bottom. Lay down your first layer of tortillas, then layer in some chorizo, corn & beans, more enchilada sauce and a layer of cheeze. It'll look a bit like so (minus the cheeze layer which obscures the stuff under it):
Keep going until your dish is full! We hold back a tiny bit of crumbles, corn and beans to make the top all pretty.
Cook at 350 for about 30 minutes. Really you just want the center to be hot and the sauces bubbly. Cut this as you choose and then top with all those wonderful cold toppings and enjoy with a big glass of Horchata!
*I will edit this post later with a link to the veggie version of Horchata recipe. :)