Fall Flavored Red Enchiladas

3 Dec

Warning! These are not authentic Mexican enchiladas. Don’t make this recipe if that is what you are searching for. It is, however, very yummy and definitely has the flavors and comfort of fall due to the sesame seeds, peanuts, and pepitas (pumpkin seeds) that are used to make the sauce.

I got this recipe from a blog and you can find that here.


For the pipián rojo:
3 dried guajillo chiles
1 dried ancho chile
3 cups boiling water
3 plum tomatoes
1/4 onion, peeled
2 garlic cloves, unpeeled
1/2 cup unsalted hulled (green) pumpkin seeds
1/2 cup unsalted peanuts
1/2 cup sesame seeds
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves (I skipped this because I didn’t have cloves)
2 teaspoons kosher salt
I also added…
1 cup chicken broth
1 can el pato

For the enchiladas:
Vegetable oil
12 corn tortillas
Cotija cheese

For garnishes:
Sour cream


1. In a skillet, toast your chiles. Then, place in boiling water and let sit.

2. In the same skillet, add your tomatoes, onions, and garlic to char. I halved the veggies and left the peel on the garlic until charred. Set aside.

3. In the same skillet, toast the pepitas, peanuts, and sesame seeds. This happens quickly and requires that you stir constantly so that you don’t burn them. Add your cinnamon.

4. In a blender, add your chiles (I left the seeds and everything in them because I like heat — if you don’t like heat, you need to remove them at this point). Add in about 2 cups of the chile soaking liquid, the tomatoes, onion, garlic, nut mixture, and salt and pepper. Puree until smooth.

5. The recipe stopped there. I, however, thought this flavor was a bit too nutty for me and a bit too thick. Although very wrong in the enchilada making world, I decided to play with this sauce a little. I added 1 cup of chicken broth and a can of El Pato (spicy tomato sauce).

I know that is wrong. When I told boyfriend’s mom about my adventures with enchilada making, she gasped at this and said “oh no, I don’t do that.” Jajaja. Whatever, boyfriend liked it. I just shouldn’t even tell anyone what I did.

6. Transfer back to your skillet and simmer about 10 minutes.

7. Heat your oven to 400°F.

8. Now, this the messy part. If you have someone who can help you in the kitchen, I highly suggest it. Also, wear an apron or a shirt that you aren’t going to freak out if things splatter. It can get messy. Especially if you are a Plumly and clumsiness follows you around like it does for me.

In a separate skillet, heat some oil and cook a corn tortilla until it is pliable. (I wish I could explain the inside/outside of the tortilla but there is a right way – look it up). Then, transfer the tortilla to the enchilada sauce to coat both sides. Then, transfer this to a plate and fill with cotija cheese. Then, roll it and place it seam-side down in your baking dish. Yeah, like all those steps? Repeat it 10-12 more times until your dish is full.

Picture taking of this was impossible.

9. Oh, and I forgot to mention – you should spread some sauce on the bottom of your dish. This helps them not to stick. Also, cover your enchiladas with the remainder of your sauce (I had a lot of sauce so I didn’t use it all – some of it is in the freezer waiting for the next batch of unauthentic enchiladas). Bake for about 10 minutes until cooked through and you think the cheese is melty.

10. Serve with white rice and sprinkle with cheese, cilantro, avocado and sour cream.

The Boyfriend Rates It:3.7
What they lacked in authenticity and aesthetics was definitely made up for in flavor. The seeds and cinnamon really gave an autumn feel. And you can never go wrong with topping of a Mexican dish with cotija cheese, avocado and sour cream 🙂


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