In the fall, I usually have a bowlful of colorful winter squash sitting on my counter, taking the place of fresh-cut flowers. To me, they are just as pretty. Plus, you get the added benefit of getting to eat them! This recipe for Butternut and Black bean Enchiladas with flavorful Mole sauce, a deep smokey spicy sauce with a hint of chocolate, can be made with any roasted winter squash, so feel free to experiment with new kinds. Beautiful red Kuri squash, acorn squash, sugar pumpkin, kobacha, delicata, sweet dumplings, even roasted spaghetti squash will work well here. I’ve even used roasted sweet potato, which is not a squash at all –my point is here, the recipe is very forgiving and so …use what you have.
Today instead of butternut I picked this pretty pale butter yellow acorn squash my neighbor, Kathy, grew.
For most squash, you will need to peel and dice them before roasting, except spaghetti squash. ( Just split the spaghetti squash in half, remove seeds, and roast skin side up for 40 minutes. Then scoop out the flesh.)
Dice the squash into ¾ inch cubes.
Place them on a baking sheet, toss with olive oil, salt and pepper, and roast in a hot oven for 15-20 minutes, being careful that they don’t get too soft. A little texture is good here.
While the winter squash is roasting in the oven, make the Quick Mole Sauce.
Now I realize, to some, this is not real, traditional Mole Sauce, the kind that takes hours to build depth and flavor, but instead, a time-saving “cheater” version. This can also be used as a simmer sauce for chicken, beans, or even tofu.
Place the mole ingredients in the blender – onion, garlic, spices, tomato sauce – everything except the chocolate and tahini, and blend until smooth. Then you will simmer it. A little backwards, but it works.
Once the mole has simmered and cooked, stir in the dark chocolate and tahini ( or peanut butter).
Pour the Quick Mole Sauce in the bottom of a baking dish and get the rest of your ingredients in place, to roll up the enchiladas.
Warm the tortillas in the oven to get them pliable, then stack them. Alternatively, you can grill over the gas flame on your stove, or pan fry them with a bit of oil- which really makes for the best enchiladas, but also the highest in calories. Your choice. Today I simply warmed them in the oven, placing them directly on the oven rack for a couple of minutes.
Fill them with the roasted squash, black beans and bit of cheese and place seam side down in the baking dish, over the Quick Mole Sauce.
Brush more Mole Sauce over the top, saving any extra for touching them up at the end.
Place in the oven to bake.
When they come out, sprinkle with some toasted sesame seeds, pumpkin seeds, more crumbled queso fresco cheese, diced avocado and fresh cilantro. Serve with a leafy green salad.
Take the leftovers to work for lunch.
A very comforting vegetarian main, perfect for fall!
- 1 small butternut, pumpkin, acorn or winter squash, peeled and diced
- oil, salt and pepper
- 1 can black beans, rinsed, drained
- 6 ounces crumbled queso fresco cheese- or shredded jack or mozzarella
- 6-8 x 7 inch corn tortillas
- Garnish- cilantro, toasted sesame seeds, toasted pumpkin seeds, avocado, sour cream
- Quick Mole Sauce:
- 15 ounce can tomato sauce
- 4 cloves garlic
- ½ an onion- rough diced
- ½ Cup water
- 1 tablespoon soy sauce
- 2-3 chipotle chilies in adobo sauce, plus 1 Tablespoon adobo sauce
- 2 tsp chili powder
- 2 tsp cumin
- 2 tsp coriander
- ½ tsp salt and Pepper, more to taste.
- 3-4 Tablespoons sesame tahini paste or peanut butter
- 2 ounces dark chocolate squares
- Preheat oven to 425F
- Peel and dice winter squash into ¾ inch cubes. Place on a parchment lined sheet pan and drizzle with oil, generous salt and pepper, Stir and roast in the hot oven for 15 minutes, and if you want boil for just a mixture or two to get them crispy.
- Make the QUICK Mole Sauce. Place all the ingredients ( EXCEPT CHOCOLATE and TAHINI PASTE) in a blender. Blend until smooth. Place this Mole sauce in a small pot, bring to a simmer over medium heat, cover ( it will splatter) and cook 7-8 minutes over medium low heat.
- Stir in tahini sauce and chocolate until melted and combined. Taste, adjust salt and sweetness, adding a teaspoon of maple if necessary (some chocolate is sweeter than others).
- Turn heat off and set aside.
- In a 9 x 13 greased baking dish, brush ⅓ of the quick mole sauce on the bottom.
- Warm the tortillas (place in the oven, fry in a skillet, microwave, grill over a gas flame) to make them soft and pliable, then stack them (frying gives them the best texture).
- Gather your ingredients...crumbled queso ( or jack cheese) drained rinsed black beans, roasted squash and begin assembling the enchiladas.
- Fill each tortilla with 2-3 tablespoons crumbled queso, ¼ cup roasted squash and ⅛ cup black beans. Roll and place seam side down in the baking dish over the mole sauce.
- When you have filled the baking dish, brush a generous amount of mole sauce all over the top of the enchiladas, saving any extra for touching up later.
- Cover with foil and bake at 375F for 20-25 minutes. Uncover, and bake for 5 more minutes, adding extra mole sauce, if necessary.
- Pull from oven, sprinkle with more crumbled queso ( if you want) toasted sesame seeds, avocado, pumpkin seeds and fresh cilantro and serve with a dollop of sour cream.