Shishito Pepper and Beef Enchiladas

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I have been looking for an excuse to use Shishito Peppers since I first saw them at the market last spring. I never noticed them before that, but once I saw them, I knew I needed to come up with a recipe that would incorporate these beauties. Today, while I was doing my shopping at Trader Joe’s and saw these wonderful peppers, it came to me. I would make enchiladas using them in the ground beef as my main “seasoning”. I added nothing more than salt and pepper to my meat and onion mixture. I really wanted the flavor of these peppers to stand out.

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I picked up a pound of lean (90% lean) ground beef, along with the Shishito peppers and formed a plan in my head.

When preparing to make my enchiladas, I first cut the tops of the peppers off and scraped the seeds out of the inside. (You can leave the seeds in tact if you prefer, I chose to remove them. I think they will add a little kick, but not too much. I understand they are a milder pepper with not too much heat.) I did some research and found that Shishito peppers are “13 to 160 times milder than a jalapeño”. However, about one in every 10-20 peppers will be a little hotter, but still milder than any mild jalapeño. I did cut a piece off and try it raw, just so I could see what it tasted like raw. It was really good! Now that I’ve finally used these wonderful little peppers, I know I’ll be using them in many recipes to come.

I started by drizzling olive oil into my cast iron skillet (about one turn of the pan) and heating it. While the oil was heating, I removed the tops of the peppers, as well as the seeds.

Next, I added the peppers to the hot oil with a 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt. I let them blister in the skillet, stirring periodically … this took about 5 minutes. Once they were blistered, I removed them and set them on a cutting board. I then diced the peppers to add to the ground beef.

I sautéd a small sweet yellow onion I had diced, until it became soft and translucent. Then, I added 1 tablespoon of refrigerated, jarred minced garlic (because I was being lazy and didn’t feel like mincing garlic. Feel free to mince fresh garlic if you prefer.) I let the garlic cook together with the onion for about 45 seconds before adding the ground beef, kosher salt and pepper to the skillet.

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Once the beef was browned and crumbly, I added the chopped, blistered Shishito peppers and let them heat through with the meat for about 5 minutes.

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Meanwhile, I heated the corn tortillas in my cast iron skillet. I also heated two 12 ounce bottles of enchilada sauce in a separate sauce pan. Wanting to make sure I’d have an easy clean-up, I sprayed my 9×13 glass dish with non-stick cooking spray before adding a cup or so of enchilada sauce on the bottom of the dish.

I placed two tablespoons of the meat mixture on each tortilla, along with a little pepper jack cheese, that I shredded.

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I then rolled my enchilada and placed them seam side down in my baking dish. Once they were all nestled together, I scraped any of the meat that was left in my skillet onto the enchiladas. Next, I poured the enchilada sauce onto the enchiladas and sprinkled the rest of the shredded cheese over the top.

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I placed my enchiladas in a preheated 375 degree oven for 30 minutes.

I served the enchiladas with shredded lettuce, tomatoes, a dollop of sour cream and a few sliced black olives over the top.

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These were so good! Dennis and Kylie both asked if we could have leftovers for dinner tomorrow night. This is a win-win for me, I don’t need to cook tomorrow night, just reheat.

Ingredients

1 package Shishito peppers

1 pound lean ground beef

12 corn tortillas

1 small yellow onion, diced

1 tablespoon minced garlic

2 tablespoons olive oil, plus a drizzle for the peppers

2 teaspoons kosher salt (divided)

1/2 teaspoon pepper

1-1/2 cups pepper jack cheese, shredded

shredded lettuce

diced tomatoes

light sour cream

sliced black olives

Directions

  1. In cast iron skillet, heat drizzle of olive oil.
  2. Remove tops and seeds from Shishito peppers.
  3. Place peppers and 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt into hot cast iron skillet. Let cook for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally while peppers blister. Remove peppers from skillet and set aside.
  4. Sauté onion in olive oil until soft and translucent (about 5 minutes). Add garlic and cook together for 45 seconds.
  5. Add ground beef, salt and pepper and cook until meat is browned and crumbly.
  6. While meat is browning, chop peppers.
  7. Add peppers to meat mixture and cook together for 3-5 minutes.
  8. Heat corn tortillas in cast iron skillet.
  9. Place 2 tablespoons of meat mixture in center of tortilla, along with 1/2 tablespoon shredded cheese.
  10. Pour 1 cup of heated enchilada sauce into bottom of 9×13 glass dish. Place enchiladas, side by side, seam side down onto sauce until pan is filled.
  11. Scrape any extra meat over enchiladas and add the rest of the enchilada sauce over the top of the tortillas.
  12. Sprinkle the rest of the cheese over the top and bake for 30 minutes, until cheese is melted and sauce is bubbling. Let rest 5 minutes before serving.

Enjoy!

Until next time, Kris

 

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