Clinic: Blue Cheese Enchiladas

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Clinic: Blue Cheese Enchiladas

Postby Jenise » Tue Oct 03, 2006 12:00 pm

Okay, in a tasting note in the wine forum, Jim Jones described "blue cheese enchiladas in a light jalapeno sauce". In Tokyo, no less. They were paired with a gruner veltliner.

This is the kind of food that I would order in a restaurant (with a chef I trust) just to find out how in the heck he/she put that together. I would be ultra excited to find out how so many appealing but disparate elements were brought together, and I would expect to be delighted with the result and have an idea that I would want to work with at home.

I'm thinking that the blue cheese filling would need a mellower, good melting cheese as a foundation, like monterey jack or a creamy young cheddar. I'm not sure whether I'd add onions or not, or even a third element, though I'd absolutely keep it vegetarian. Then there's the sauce: we need something to host the jalapeno. Tomatillo? Cilantro and cream? Something else?

What would you fine cooks do if challenged to create this dish? [/img]
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Re: Clinic: Blue Cheese Enchiladas

Postby Robin Garr » Tue Oct 03, 2006 12:21 pm

Jenise wrote:What would you fine cooks do if challenged to create this dish?


Hmm, I don't find it entirely appealing, Jenise, but off the top, I'm thinking that you're on target about needing something to carry the blue cheese ... either a blend with <i>queso bianco</i> for ethnic purity, or maybe something like a bechamel with blue melted in (a blue-cheese Mornay?) for more refinement.

I'm kind of stumped on how I'd handle the jalapeños, but might look up a recipe for chile verde and consider pulling out just the verde part while holding the pork. :)
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Re: Clinic: Blue Cheese Enchiladas

Postby Stuart Yaniger » Tue Oct 03, 2006 12:34 pm

If you devein and deseed them, of course, they can be considerably mellower. Roasted tomatillo and ground pepitas might be a good base pairing. A young St. Agur or gorgonzola dulce might be a good blending partner with something bland. I'm unfamiliar with Mexican blues.

But honestly, this seems like a contrived dish from a chef who's trying to be much too clever.
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Re: Clinic: Blue Cheese Enchiladas

Postby Jenise » Tue Oct 03, 2006 4:50 pm

Stuart, contrived? Really? I know it's nontraditional, but it just struck me as outside the box and nicely so. Perhaps because I'm a corn tortilla fanatic, I love, at least on paper, the idea of elevating the humble enchilada into fashionable fusion territory.

Ground pepitas in the tomatillo sauce? I like that idea. I immediately thought of the blue cheese in the middle, but Robin, your notion of putting it in the sauce is also interesting and something I hadn't thought of. Cheese enchiladas are by far my preference over meat, so I guess I reflexively WANTED the cheese inside.
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Re: Clinic: Blue Cheese Enchiladas

Postby Stuart Yaniger » Tue Oct 03, 2006 5:46 pm

Cheese enchiladas have no bigger fan than me. This one just sort of clanked in my taste-mind.
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Re: Clinic: Blue Cheese Enchiladas

Postby Mike Filigenzi » Tue Oct 03, 2006 7:23 pm

I'm having a hard time wrapping my mind's taste buds around it as well. But I think it would be worth a try if you could get a good, moderate level of blue cheese flavor. Seems to me that a milder roasted green chili might work better than jalapenos, or maybe with just a little jalapeno. Pepitas or some other nutty item sounds good, too.


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Re: Clinic: Blue Cheese Enchiladas

Postby Jenise » Wed Oct 04, 2006 11:40 am

Mike and Stu--I'm definitely going to play with this. Can't resist. It sort of hits me where a goat cheese and potato ravioli once did--potato in a ravioli? Couldn't have been less intuitive to me, but it was lovely. I can imagine that this could be too, if you glammed it up just right and achieved balance with the sauce.
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Re: Clinic: Blue Cheese Enchiladas

Postby RichardAtkinson » Wed Oct 04, 2006 3:23 pm

I would think that most blue cheese would be too strongly flavored to be the only stuffing in an enchilada.

But if you were not totally dtermined to make it a "cheese enchilada"..stuffing the corn tortilla w/ strips of rare grilled fajita or steak along with the blue cheese might be interesting. Topping it off with dried red chile based sauce and a bit of sour cream perhaps?

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Re: Clinic: Blue Cheese Enchiladas

Postby Stuart Yaniger » Wed Oct 04, 2006 4:16 pm

potato in a ravioli? Couldn't have been less intuitive to me


In a world with pierogi, samosa, dosa, and knishes?
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Re: Clinic: Blue Cheese Enchiladas

Postby Jenise » Wed Oct 04, 2006 4:41 pm

I understand your incredulity, but yeah. At the time I'm referring to encountering the potato ravioli, I had never even seen a pirogi. Nor had I, nor have I still, ever had a potato knish. Samosas and dosas yes, but the texture combination of both is crisp-soft. The soft-fine soft-grainy combination of pasta and potato was completely foreign--and not, at first mention, particularly attractive--to me.
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Re: Clinic: Blue Cheese Enchiladas

Postby Stuart Yaniger » Wed Oct 04, 2006 4:50 pm

Don't feel bad, at the time we met, my wife had never tasted anything called "pasta." The closest she had come was Spaghetti-Os in a can.
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Re: Clinic: Blue Cheese Enchiladas

Postby Jenise » Wed Oct 04, 2006 5:02 pm

That is so hard to believe. I grew up in whitebread, Republican Whittier, California where the closest thing there to an ethnic neighborhood was Pico Rivera, and that was a whole town! :) So you can forget things like Jewish and Eastern European foods--they weren't part of our world, not even in the homes of friends. But even we had real pasta.

Where did Linda grow up, the North Pole?
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Re: Clinic: Blue Cheese Enchiladas

Postby Stuart Yaniger » Wed Oct 04, 2006 5:39 pm

Close. Wyoming, then Alaska.
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Re: Clinic: Blue Cheese Enchiladas

Postby Mike Filigenzi » Thu Oct 05, 2006 12:33 am

Jenise wrote:Mike and Stu--I'm definitely going to play with this. Can't resist. It sort of hits me where a goat cheese and potato ravioli once did--potato in a ravioli? Couldn't have been less intuitive to me, but it was lovely. I can imagine that this could be too, if you glammed it up just right and achieved balance with the sauce.


If I get a chance this weekend, I might try something along those lines. I've not made enchiladas in about 20 years, so I guess I'm due....


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Re: Clinic: Blue Cheese Enchiladas

Postby Stuart Yaniger » Thu Oct 05, 2006 12:58 am

I'm camping this weekend, so it might be interesting to try al fresco.
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