Feliz Navidad: Mexican Pizzas and Christmas Tree Decorating

There’s nothing tricky about making these. Eating something far different from stuffing and mashed potatoes was the goal here. At home my Mom makes turkey enchiladas the day after Thanksgiving, and we eat them in the same room as our decorated Christmas tree that we’d cut down earlier that day. Since we couldn’t find a Thanksgiving turkey in Japan, I thought we should still eat something “Mexican,” so as not to completely break tradition. This recipe makes two Mexican pizzas, and they’re way better than the ones you get at Taco Bell (not to damn them with faint praise).

The sauce we made for our Mexican pizzas was similar to our enchilada sauce recipe, but without the tomatoes.

Mexican Pizzas

Vegetable oil (2 TBS. + more for frying the tortillas)
Chili powder
Garlic Powder
Onion Powder
Kosher salt & freshly ground black pepper
a couple splashes of chicken broth (or water)
4 corn or flour tortillas
1 lb. ground beef (or turkey)
1 package taco seasoning (or your favorite seasoning blend)
1 14-oz. can refried beans
Toppings: Shredded cheese, diced tomatoes, diced onions, chopped lettuce,  sour cream

  • Heat about 2 TBS. of vegetable oil in a pan. Then add 1 TBS. of flour and a bunch of spices — lots of chili powder (add to taste), a few shakes of cumin, garlic powder, dried onion, salt and pepper — and whisk everything together until the sauce thickens and is fragrant. Add a little chicken broth (or you could use water) to lighten it up. Taste and adjust seasonings until it’s perfect for you. Set aside. (You can also use your favorite store-bought enchilada sauce if prefer to make this meal even easier!)
  • Preheat your broiler.
  • Fry corn or flour tortillas in vegetable oil on both sides until crispy. Drain on paper towels and place two of them on a baking sheet in a single layer.
  • Brown 1 lb. of ground beef in a pan and add water and taco seasoning (or your own blend) according to package directions. While it’s simmering, heat up a can of refried beans.
  • Spread a thin layer of beans on top of each tortilla on your baking sheet. Top with some taco meat (you won’t need all of it – save for another use). Cover with your remaining 2 tortillas and liberally spoon the enchilada sauce on top of the two Mexican pizzas. Sprinkle with lots of shredded cheese, fresh tomatoes and chopped onions.
  • Broil for a few minutes, until the cheese is melted and lovely. Slice your Mexican pizzas into quarters. Before serving, scatter some chopped lettuce on top, and a dollop of sour cream (if desired).

Arius enjoyed the process of stringing lights on the tree.

And here’s the finished product. Not too bad for a fake tree, huh?

2 thoughts on “Feliz Navidad: Mexican Pizzas and Christmas Tree Decorating

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