In other words: Code red, must-eat-now-or-I-will-destroy-someone, straight-up hanger. (For the uninitiated, that's hunger + anger. Dangerous stuff.)
How to cope and keep my neighbors safe from cannibalism? The slow cooker. On StrikLee days, I come home on my lunch break, quickly prep some ingredients, throw everything into the Crock-Pot and turn it on.
Last week, I made slow cooker enchiladas. This was so easy that I felt like I was cheating. I basically just layered beans, olives, tofu, tortillas and enchilada sauce over and over again until the Crock-Pot was full.
And then I went back to the office.
When I came home that night from my workout, the house smelled absolutely amazing -- spicy, savory, comforting goodness. And all I had to do to satisfy my appetite was scoop some of this cheesy wonderfulness onto a plate and add some tortilla chips for extra fat-kid flavor.
(The downside to the Crock-Pot: It looks like a Crap Pot. No matter how good the food is, it's still a weird, shapeless conglomeration of stuff when it's done. But if you can get over this, you'll be rewarded.)
Slow Cooker Enchiladas
Adapted from The Gourmet Vegetarian Slow Cooker
1/2 large onion, diced
1 can black beans
2 small cans pitted, sliced black olives
1 package extra firm tofu
1 package shredded cheese (pick whatever kind you like -- it doesn't matter)
1 package tortillas (I like the gluten-free teff or flax ones from La Tortilla Factory)
2 cans enchilada sauce, red or green (or make your own if you aren't lazy, impatient and pressed for time like me)
2 T olive oil
Mix the onion, black beans and olives together in a large bowl. Crumble the tofu into the bowl.
Coat the inside of the slow cooker insert with the olive oil. Layer the onion-black bean-olive-tofu mixture at the bottom. Generously sprinkle cheese on top. Spoon some enchilada sauce on top of that. Then add a layer of tortillas (and it's OK if the tortillas overlap). Repeat about two more times, until the Crock-Pot is almost full. After the final layer of tortillas, sprinkle the remainder of the cheese on and pour on what's left of the enchilada sauce.
Cover the slow cooker and set to low for 5-6 hours. Serve with chips (I like tortilla chips or -- even better -- Fritos). And maybe some hot sauce and sour cream (or yogurt, if you want to be a little healthier). You can even make a side salad. (Or some rice, if you're Asian like me and want to have rice with pretty much everything that's ever been created. Ha.)
The best thing about this recipe is that it's not set in stone (which is probably also why my measurements really suck -- I'm a runner, not a chef). It's all about winging it -- if you want more cheese, add more cheese. If you don't like tofu, swap it out for cauliflower or broccoli or zucchini or another firmer vegetable, cut into thin slices for easy layering. You can also try pinto beans instead of black beans. The options are endless.