Saturday, August 25, 2012

Chicken Enchiladas. Lebanese Men

 Fact: Lebanese men do not cook. '"Why?" you may ask.
"It's a woman's task," which actually means, cooking is beneath Lebanese men.
This post is biased against Lebanese men. So if you are a Lebanese man and you are already offended, please click away from this page, then close your browser, then shut down your computer, then go somewhere else, then continue your life as normal. If you are a Lebanese woman who decides that she's offended on the behalf of Lebanese men, then please do the same.
 The only Lebanese men whom I met, who know how to cook, are the ones who spent a portion of their lives outside Lebanon. More precisely, those who were outside in the West, not in the East.
 In Lebanon, women cook, clean, take care of the children, and, have a full time job like all the men. The men also have a full time job. But they have the privilege of having women cook, clean, rear their children, and bring extra money. It really never made sense to me. No matter how much people tried to rationalize it, I still could not comprehend the obvious inequality. So it was hopeless, and, because I am lucky, I married my western man.
 There is this one episode that truly speaks for the situation: One time, my husband and I were visiting my family in Lebanon. My husband was helping do the dishes, and he was wearing the kitchen apron. My cousin A. knocks at the door, and walks into the living room. My father jumps freaking, and says, "Close the kitchen door very fast.. so A. won't see V. wearing an apron and doing the dishes!"
 That's how offensive it is to Lebanese men to participate in the house chores. Of course, they have more important stuff to do, like watching TV, and spending endless hours with other Lebanese men chatting about how good life is without the chores.
 So Lebanese men, here's your brother-in-law's Chicken Enchiladas. They are great!

Recipe: Chicken Enchiladas

  • 1 lb skinless boneless chicken thighs
  • 1/2 medium onion, sliced into large pieces
  • 1 tbsp dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1 bouillon cube 
  • 5 flour tortillas
  • 3 large tomatoes 
  • 1 clove garlic (mashed)
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 serrano pepper (or 1 anaheim or banana pepper if you don't like it spicy)
  • a dash of black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • shredded mild cheddar and monterrey jack cheese
  1. Boil the chicken with the onion pieces, oregano, black pepper, salt, 1 clove garlic and bouillon cube. Remove from broth and shred when cool.
  2. Boil the tomatoes for 3 minutes, then place them in a food processor, and blend them with the serrano or anaheim or banana pepper.
  3. In a skillet, heat the olive oil, then add the mashed garlic and a dash of black pepper, then add the tomato pepper sauce, then the salt. Simmer for 20 mins.
  4. Heat 1 tortilla, then remove from heat. Put some of shredded chicken in the tortilla, and roll. Put some cheese on top of the roll, then some tomato sauce, then cheese again. 
  5. Repeat for the rest of the ingredients. Serve with avocados and refried beans. Eat immediately (don't leave the rolls with the sauce for a long time).

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