Our current book selection for Cook the Books Club has been Relish: My Life in the Kitchen, a Graphic Memoir by Lucy Knisley. Cartoon formatted books are not my usual go to read, or cookbook for that matter. I found some of it entertaining and humorous, some recipes a bit questionable, and a few that made me want to give a try. The pickle episode was funny, but in actuality, pretty bad. I've never seen such a complicated and strange procedure for making pickled vegetables. Cooking the cucumbers first? 1/2 gallon apple cider vinegar?? She says that her grandmother made incredible pickles, and further that both she and her mom were never able to duplicate the process. It totally made me want to email her a good recipe for naturally fermented pickles, which is probably what her grandmother made. Here it is for anyone interested: https://honeyfromrock.blogspot.com/2010/10/they-cant-be-that-easy-pickled.html
From the Publishers:"Lucy Knisley loves food. The daughter of a chef and a gourmet, this talented young cartoonist comes by her obsession honestly. In her forthright, thoughtful, and funny memoir, Lucy traces key episodes in her life thus far, framed by what she was eating at the time and lessons learned about food, cooking, and life. Each chapter is bookended with an illustrated recipe―many of them treasured family dishes, and a few of them Lucy's original inventions.
A welcome read for anyone who ever felt more passion for a sandwich than is strictly speaking proper, Relish is a graphic novel for our time: it invites the reader to celebrate food as a connection to our bodies and a connection to the earth, rather than an enemy, a compulsion, or a consumer product."
10 small tortillas (corn or flour) cut in half
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 pound ground beef
1 tablespoon seasonings of choice (cumin, Mexican oregano, culantro, chili powder, paprika etc.)
salt and pepper to taste
15 ounces black beans rinsed and drained
2 cups green enchilada sauce
2 ½ cups cheeses, shredded (I used Sicilian Jack, Queso Manchego and Cotija for the top)
2 tomatoes cored, seeded and diced or 1 large one
¼ cup green onions sliced & 1 tablespoon cilantro or culantro
Preheat the oven to 350°F. Coat a 2 quart baking dish with oil.
Heat the oil in a large pan over medium heat. Add the ground beef and cook for 6-8 minutes, breaking up the meat with a spoon.
Add the seasonings, salt and pepper to taste, and beans; stir to combine.
Spread ¼ cup of the enchilada sauce over the bottom of the baking dish.
Layer ⅓ of the tortillas over the sauce.
Add ½ of the meat mixture, then add ¾ cup of cheese on top of the meat.
Pour ½ cup of the enchilada sauce over the cheese.
Repeat the process with ⅓ of the tortillas, the rest of the meat mixture, ¾ cup of cheese and ½ cup of sauce.
Add the final ⅓ of tortillas on top of the casserole; pour the remaining sauce over the top of the tortillas and sprinkle on the rest of the cheese.
Cover the casserole with foil and bake for 30 minutes. Uncover and bake for an additional 5-10 minutes or until cheese is melted and browned.
Sprinkle tomatoes cilantro and green onions over the top. Let the casserole sit for 5 minutes before cutting.