Tag Archives: Monterey Jack Cheese

Cheese Enchiladas, Tijuana Tilly style

I was looking at the menu plan for the week and saw that I’d written Cheese Enchiladas for our meal today.
And then I started reminiscing, to myself, silently, about the restaurant that we used to go to when I was first married.  I loved going there, we went there for special occasions and I always ordered the same thing.
Cheese Enchiladas, with rice and beans of course.   I loved their enchiladas, and mourned deeply when the restaurant was closed and then torn down and an Olive Garden was built there.  Tijuana Tilly’s will always be my favourite Mexican restaurant, sigh.  They’ve been gone for a very long time.  But I made do and got to know and love a couple of other restaurants along the way.

Then I moved.

And I now live in a place where I have to drive either 30 miles one way or 25 miles the other way to be able to eat Mexican food.

I make it myself now.

Now that you’ve read this far, and thank you for doing so,I thought I’d share how I make my version of Cheese Enchiladas, Tijuana Tilly style.

To start with, you need cheese. Lots and lots of cheese.  OK, maybe not that much, but get out the grater and start shredding.   I like a mixture of Colby Jack Cheese and Monterey Jack cheese, and luckily for me, I can get it already mixed, all I need to do is shred it.   I bet you can get it the same way too.  Just kidding here.  But you can use the cheese that’s already shredded, if you like.  I think it tastes best when you shred it yourself, but…

After shredding the cheese, divide it in half and add about 1/2 cup drained sliced black olives to half the cheese mixture along with a finely diced shallot, or 1/4 cup diced onion.   Either one will do.  I just happened to have a single, solitary shallot left from when I made the Caramelized Shallots for the tart a week or so ago.

Now for the fun part.    Assembling the enchiladas.  I usually warm the flour tortillas just a little, it makes them easier to roll up.


Get a good handful of cheese, place it on the flour tortilla and then either roll it up or make a burrito style roll up.  Which means folding the end over the cheese, then folding in the sides and rolling it the rest of the way.  I like doing it like that, cause I hate the cheese escaping out of the ends of the tortilla.  Place the rolled tortilla seam side down in a greased

baking pan, then proceed with the rest of the cheese and tortillas.  Pour some hot enchilada sauce over

top,and sprinkle with a little more cheese if you like, and put in the microwave for about 6 minutes at 70% power.  Or until the cheese has melted.   I’ve baked these in an oven in the past, but really don’t like how the tortillas get gummy.

Serve with some Refried Beans and Mexican Rice.


And serve the leftover beans rolled in a flour tortilla for breakfast.   Along with a little cheese, browned in a pan.  So good.

Shrimp and Grits and Boat Club this month.

I love grits, plain with some butter and syrup on top, or loaded with cheese and served alongside some fish.   I’ve even had leftover grits, fried and with jam on top.  That was a little strange however.     But I think I now have a dish in my repertoire that I will make again and again.

I would have followed this recipe which I got from Miz Helen’s Country Cottage and she got from the Homesick Texan cookbook, but as I think I’ve said in the past, I live in a very small town and our little grocery store doesn’t carry a lot of stuff.   And when you have to drive over 30 miles to the next largest town to get some items, you make do.   And I made do, with some rather nice results.

This recipe called for fresh tomatillo’s, or canned.   Our grocery store doesn’t carry fresh tomatillo’s but they used to carry canned ones so I thought I was safe I could plan accordingly.  Well, gee, guess what, they don’t carry that either, anymore.   So I improvised, and it worked out well.  I always have at least 2 cans of La Costena Green Mexican Salsa in my cupboard.  It goes great over Peggy’s Paparito’s.    I served the Grits with Lime Tequila shrimp.

Cheezy Tomatillo Salsa Grits

2 cups milk

2 cups water

1 1/3 cup grits

2 cans La Costena Green Salsa (7.76 oz can or 220 gram)

4 oz. shredded Monterey Jack Cheese

4 oz. Shredded Cheddar Cheese

Cook grits in the milk/water until done.

Then stir in the green tomatillo salsa,

let it heat through a little, then stir in the cheeses.

Serve immediately with some Lime Tequila Shrimp.

Poaching  liquid  for Lime Tequila Shrimp

2 pounds shrimp, in shell or shelled.

2 quarts water

2 tablespoons lightly cracked peppercorns

1 teaspoon or more to taste, cayenne pepper

1 bottle beer

1 lemon, quartered and juice squeezed into pot

1 teaspoon dill

1 teaspoon celery seed

2 teaspoons salt

2 bay leaves

Prepare poaching liquid by letting it come to a boil and simmering it for a few minutes to release the spices into the water.   Avoid standing over the pot and inhaling the wonderful smell as the cayenne pepper can become rather strong.   Just keep your distance, not too far away.

Add the shrimp to the boiling water, one-third at a time.   Remove the shrimp after a couple of minutes, or when they start to float up and turn pink.

Place them on a baking sheet to cool down so you can peel them later if needed or desired.   Set them aside while poaching the rest of the shrimp.

Lime Tequila Shrimp

2 lbs. Poached Shrimp (use above recipe or make your own)

4 tablespoons melted butter

2 oz. tequila (I use Hornito Sauza)

2 oz fresh lime juice

1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro

Melt butter in pan, add shrimp, tequila, lime juice and cilantro.

Warm through for just a couple of minutes or less, then serve alongside the Tomatillo Salsa Grits.

Oh,  and there were other dishes last night at the Boat Club as well:

Kathy made some Pork Tenderloins with a totally yummy dipping sauce and some stuffed mushrooms.   The dipping sauce is basically marmalade melted in the microwave, mixed with some soy sauce.   She had some ginger marmalade here and, oh was it good.   This is a great dip for coconut shrimp as well.

We also had an awesome Potato Salad with fresh apples and dill.

Tabouli, which I love.   I can’t wait for my parsley plant to recover from the butterfly caterpillars feasting on it so I can make some Tabouli again.  This was so fresh tasting.

We also had Ham

And some peas and snaps with fresh corn bread.  ( I think I love the south, all the legume dishes I’ve learned to cook here)

You have to cook cornbread in an iron skillet.  Really, you do.  Otherwise you don’t get that nice crust and the texture seems to come out all wrong as well.   This was some of the best cornbread I’ve had in a long time.

We also had some really great pickled cucumbers and beets.   Such a great accompaniment to the meal.

There is nothing as good as home pickled beets.  I think I could have eaten all the beets by myself.   I did practice some restraint however, I only ate some of them.

I can’t forget my contribution either, here’s the final Shrimp and Grits

As usual, great food, even better company and a good time was had by all.