EAT This Week: Azul Latin Kitchen’s Enchilada Classico
To try and decide each week where and what to eat around the basin can be a challenge — there are so many amazing choices. In this feature we’ll dive into dishes that will surely satisfy those hunger pangs and leave you wondering where to go next.
Like the name of this week’s feature might suggest, enchiladas are definitely a classic — so much so that the original version has been around since the time of the Aztecs — we’re talking B.C., folks. Yes, they weren’t the modern version that we’re more accustomed to seeing now, but oh how I sure do love me some modern versions. The version from Azul sure does scratch that itch, and then some.
Normally I might start with the filling, but I have to start with the construction of this version because technically they aren’t filled – they’re layered. Those layers consist of your choice of roasted chicken, carnitas pork, or veggies (or feel free to upgrade to steak or sautéed shrimp). I’m a carnitas junkie, so any time I can get my fix, I’m pushing my chips all in.
The layer train moves along with corn tortillas, melted Jack and Oaxaca cheeses, and topped with your choice of house made red enchilada sauce or green Suiza sauce and sour cream. You also have the option to get them Christmas-style (both red and green sauces) that way you get the best of both worlds – little heat, little sweet. They are served in a cast iron skillet and are accompanied by green rice, black beans and chopped cilantro.
If the skillet were an office, the sauce is the boss (or bosses if doing both). There’s deep richness and bright tanginess and each bite is harmonious in flavor. There’s a little heat (although I love heat), but a quick swipe of sour cream can turn that frown upside down if you choose.
Oaxaca cheese is like a Mexican mozzarella, so it brings the melt-y stringiness to the party and adds a balance throughout the entire dish. I could probably chug the carnitas separately, but hey, it’s my vice so sorry if that put a strange image in your head. Let’s just say they are quite tasty.
Each of the sides can easily stand on their own, but you also have a few chips that I’d recommend swiping through the remnants — if there are any left. In my case, that was a big fat no.
Azul Latin Kitchen is located at 1001 Heavenly Village Way in South Lake Tahoe. For food and drink information visit them online at azullatinkitchen.com or reach them via phone at 530-541-2985.
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