CookUnity, as you may now know, is a community of chefs and lovers of food. The chefs not only want to cook for you, they also want you to be able to try recipes out on your own(if you’re so inclined). Especially in these winter months, it can be so nice to have something fragrant stewing on the stove.
Chef Allie, a CookUnity favorite, passed us one of her healthy and hearty recipes to share on the blog: Butternut Squash/Black Bean/Kale Enchiladas. She also did us the awesome favor of breaking down why the ingredients she chose are good for us, so we can feel great about what we’re cooking and putting into our body. So, let’s look at some of the nutritional info first.
Butternut Squash is high in Vitamin A, which increases brain elasticity, Vitamin B6, which aids in concentration, and Vitamin K, which improves memory and cognitive function.
Kale contains chlorophyll, beta-carotene, calcium, and Vitamins A, C, and K! It also protects against cognitive decline and supports the body’s detox system.
Cilantro supports spleen, stomach, bladder, and lung function. It’s also a diuretic and helps treat U.T.I’s and soothes inflammation.
Black Beans help reduce blood cholesterol and lower blood pressure. They also prevent constipation and support and strengthen kidneys.
Onions contain antioxidant flavonoids boosting memory and protecting neurons from injury. They also contain thiamin and other minerals linked to mental focus and high energy, and are antibiotic and anti-inflammatory.
Lime is a great source of Vitamin B1, potassium, and Vitamin C. It also helps support cognitive function, memory, and mood.
Garlic helps boost memory and keep the brain sharp later in life! It also stimulates metabolism, improves digestion, and stabilizes blood sugar levels.
Now that we’ve learned all about what we’re putting into our bodies, let’s learn how to make it delicious.
Butternut Squash, Kale and Black Bean Enchiladas
2 lbs butternut squash fresh or frozen, cut into 1-inch cubes (about 2.5 cups)
¼ teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon paprika
1 teaspoon cayenne
2 Tablespoon olive oil
1 Tablespoon honey
1 red onion, diced
3-4 garlic cloves
12 oz (1.5 cups) chopped kale
1 cup vegetable broth or water
1 (15 oz) can black beans
1 Tablespoon lime juice
½ teaspoon kosher salt, or to taste
5 whole wheat or gluten free tortillas
(Optional) 1-2 cups grated cheese, pepper jack recommended
1 cup Creamy Avocado Sauce (See recipe)
Fresh cilantro leaves for garnish
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly grease a rectangular baking dish (3-qt/2.8 L)
- In a small bowl, mix together the spices, a pinch of salt, a few grinds of black pepper, olive oil and honey. Add the squash and toss to evenly coat. Roast in preheated oven, tossing occasionally until tender and slightly golden, about 25-30 minutes. If using frozen squash, pull out a piece and cut it open. If cold inside, return to oven, checking every 5 minutes.
- Simmer broth or salted water in a large saucepan. Once simmering, add kale and cover with a lid. Simmer over low heat for around 5 minutes, then remove lid and increase heat until all liquid evaporate. Set aside.
- Drain and rinse beans. Set aside.
- Heat oil in large skillet over medium high heat. Add onion, sauté 3-5 minutes. Add garlic and cook 1 minute more.
- Add cooked squash, kale and black beans cook for a 2-3 minutes more.
- Remove skillet from heat. Stir in lime juice, salt and ¼ cup enchilada sauce. Set aside.
- Spread 1 cup of enchilada sauce evenly on bottom of pre-greased baking dish.
- Scoop ¾ cup squash filling into each tortilla. Roll up and place tortillas seam side down in the baking dish.
- Spread the remaining enchilada sauce and filling on top. If desired, sprinkle cheese on top as well. Bake for 30 minutes or until top is starts to brown and bubble.
- To serve, plate individually, sprinkle with cilantro leaves and drizzle with Creamy Avocado Sauce.
Creamy Avocado Sauce
(yields 1 cup)
½ cup fresh cilantro
1 clove garlic
1 medium, pitted, ripe avocado
2 Tablespoons lime juice
¼ fine grain sea salt
3 Tablespoons water
- In a food processor or blender, process cilantro and garlic until finely minced. Add avocado, lime juice, salt and water.
- Process until creamy, scraping down the side occasionally.
- Serve drizzled on top of Butternut Squash, Kale and Black Bean Enchiladas