Photos and recipes
I still need to properly post about the Amsterdam Decemberists show, but I cannot be bothered at the moment. So, some other stuff...
I've put some photos online that I took during our short trip to Berlin. They start here. The city didn't leave much of an impression in my mind, partly because we only had a day and a bit to look around. But also I'm realizing that whenever we go somewhere more northern and it's not the summer, I come away not impressed by the city. You can't control the weather, but it does make such a difference in being able to enjoy things. So we'll go back someday, and be sure to do it when there's a better chance of good weather.
Some friends came over for dinner a couple of weekends ago and I wanted to make something new, and in the end I decided upon enchiladas since I was feeling like having something Mexican. Also neither of the people coming over were American, so I figured it would be something new for them. I ended up making the enchilada sauce and some Spanish rice from recipes I found online. The dinner was a definite success, so I thought I'd post the recipes here.
Spanish Rice (from http://www.elise.com/recipes/)
1 onion, chopped fine
1 garlic clove, minced
2 cups (about 300 grams) of medium or long-grain white rice
3 cups (about 750 ml)* chicken broth (or vegetable stock if vegetarian)
1 can cooked tomatoes, strained
Pinch of oregano
1 teaspoon salt
*Check the instructions on the rice package for the proportions of liquid to rice. They can range from 1:1 to 2:1. If your rice calls for 2 cups of water for every cup of rice, then for this recipe, use 4 cups of stock for 2 cups of rice.
In a large skillet, brown the rice in olive oil, medium/high heat. Start with 2-3 tablespoons of oil, but add more if it starts to stick. Add the onion and garlic. Cook the onion-rice mixture, stirring frequently, about 4 minutes, or until onions are softened. The rice may smell or even look a bit burnt, but this is fine.
In a separate saucepan, bring the broth to a simmer. Add the drained tomatoes, oregano, and salt. Add the rice to the broth. Bring to a simmer. Cover. Lower heat and cook 15-25 minutes, depending on the type of rice and the instructions on the rice package. Turn off heat and let sit for 5 minutes.
Serves 4 to 6 (one large pan of rice).
8 flour tortillas
4 chicken filets
Enchilada Sauce (recipe below)
100 grams cheddar cheese, shredded
Cut the chicken into small pieces. Cook the chicken and near the end, add 1-2 tablespoons of taco seasoning. Cook for another 5 minutes or so until chicken is fully cooked and seasoning has cooked into the chicken. Set aside (no need to keep warm).
Prepare the enchilada sauce:
Mexican Enchilada Sauce
3 tablespoons chili powder
3 tablespoons flour
1 teaspoon cocoa powder
1/2 teaspoon garlic salt
1 teaspoon oregano
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
2 cups water
1 cup tomato sauce (the tomato frito I found in my supermarket works well)
Combine all dry ingredients in a small bowl. Stirring constantly, slowly add enough of the water to make a thin paste. Pour the paste into pan and add rest of water. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until mixture thickens. If it doesn’t thicken, add a bit more flour. If it’s too thick, add a bit more water. Stir in tomato sauce. Take off heat.
Use a large, rectangular glass baking dish. Pour a little bit of the enchilada sauce on the bottom of the dish and spread to cover the bottom.
Take one tortilla and dip into the enchilada sauce until it is fully coated. Lay tortilla flat and place some of the chicken in a line down the middle. Roll up tortilla around chicken and place in baking dish, seam-side down. Continue with rest of the tortillas. Pour remaining sauce over the tortillas in the dish. Sprinkle cheese over the top. Bake at 350 degrees F for 20 mins. Serve with rice and sour cream.