In which there's another story and another recipe to share

I’ll do what my father did (Ukraine)
Long ago, a poor man travelled from village to village, meeting new people and finding adventures along the way. 

One cold winter evening, the man came to a lonely inn. 

He knocked at the door, but when the innkeeper saw the shabby clothes of the traveler, he knew that he would not be paid for any food or shelter he gave.  “We’re closed, go away,” said the innkeeper, but the traveler begged him for shelter, even in the humble barn.

The innkeeper’s wife did not want to let the traveler in, but the traveler thought of the cold night ahead and said angrily, “You will regret your selfishness!  Why, if you do not give me food and shelter, I will do what my father did.”  He grabbed the innkeeper by the collar and shook him, “You do not want me to do what my father did, do you?”

His voice was so frightening as he said this that the innkeeper stammered that, no, he didn’t want the stranger to do what his father did.  So he allowed the man inside by the fire, and brought him a poor crust of bread. 

“What are you doing?” asked the wife.  “Why are you feeding him?”

Overhearing her words, the traveler roared, “This crust of bread is not nearly enough to keep me from doing what my father did!  You do not want me to do what my father did, do you?”

Hearing this, the innkeeper’s wife was frightened as well, and she reached into her pantry and pulled out all kinds of food: meats and pastries and pickles. The traveler at them all.

When he was finished, he rose from the table, and thanked the trembling couple, who showed him to a fine room furnished with warm blankets and soft pillows. 

The traveler slept soundly, and enjoyed a fine breakfast provided by the still-frightened innkeepers.  When he had finished that, the stranger thanked the couple for their hospitality, and gathered up his belongings to leave.

Just as the traveler was opening the gate, the innkeeper asked in a meek voice, “Sir, please do not be offended by my question, but I really must know:  what was it that your father did?”

“Why,” said the stranger, “on cold nights when he had no food, my father…went to bed hungry."

No need to go to bed hungry when you can make this instead!

Alison’s Flat-stacked Enchilada (New Mexico style)
You’ll need three corn tortillas, grated cheddar (or cheddar and jack, or Colby, whatever you like) and a little bit of chopped onion.
You can also use shredded chicken in place of part of the cheese.
You’ll also need a Pyrex dish to go in the oven.

Begin by heating some green chile sauce.
Dunk a tortilla in the warm sauce and put in Pyrex.
Put some cheese and a little onion on the tortilla.
Dunk last tortilla in sauce.
Pour remaining sauce over enchilada, and top with a little onion and plentiful cheese. Heat in 325-350 degree oven until melty and hot.

If you want to be truly authentic, begin by frying your tortillas in hot vegetable oil for a few minutes before you make the enchilada. Not so long that it’s crispy, but just to toughen it a bit. I use folded paper towels to absorb some of the excess oil. It keeps the tortillas from getting mushy. I’m usually too hungry, but I do occasionally do this part when I’m feeling extra decadent.


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