Skip to content

This holiday season, have the whole enchilada and make it, too

This week, Vin shares a recipe for Breakfast Enchiladas and lets us know what to serve with them

Our friends and neighbours, Hugh and Laura Lougheed, have had a celebration tradition going back two dozen years. Every Christmas morning since 1996 they have served these Breakfast Enchiladas.

Prepare them the day before, and then enjoy them at your leisure on Christmas Day. (Be sure to remove them from the refrigerator half an hour before baking.)


  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1/4 cup each sweet green pepper and sweet red pepper, chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 2 cups of finely chopped ham (Use whichever ham you like - adjust amount to taste.)
  • 8 large tortillas – Hugh suggests the white flour tortillas, as the whole wheat are drier.
  • 2 cups of cheddar cheese, shredded (A good, aged, sharp cheddar is best)
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1/4 tsp. hot sauce
  • 2 cups of milk
  • 1 Tbsp. all-purpose flour
  • 2 tsp. vegetable oil

You will also need some oil to grease your casserole or baking dish thoroughly before baking to ensure the enchiladas won’t stick.


Some options include salsa – choose your favourite in terms of style or heat - and sour cream. For colour and freshness, some chopped coriander will add an herbal note and brightness.


Starting with a non-stick frying pan, heat the two tablespoons of oil over medium heat. Add the onion, garlic and the two peppers, and then cook, stirring, for about five minutes until they have softened.

Add the ham and incorporate with the vegetables.

Remove from heat, and place about three tablespoons of the mixture on one half of each tortilla. Next, distribute about three tablespoons of the cheddar evenly over the ham mixture.

Roll up each tortilla tightly and place seam down in a 9x13-inch greased casserole dish.

In a bowl, beat the eggs and blend in the flour, milk, and hot sauce. Next, pour the mixture evenly over the tortillas. Cover the casserole and refrigerate over-night.

When ready to cook the next morning, take the casserole out of the refrigerator and allow the mixture to warm up for half an hour. Heat your oven to 350°F. Re-spoon the egg mixture in the casserole over the tortillas so that they are nicely coated. (You may need to tilt the casserole to get to the egg mixture for spooning.) Then, bake for about 45 to 50 minutes, or until the egg mixture has set and a knife inserted into the centre comes out clean.

Sprinkle the remaining cheddar over the tortillas, and allow to stand for five minutes. Then, serve along with sour cream and salsa. (If you prefer more hot sauce, you can always put some on your plate and dip your enchilada in it as you go.)

Hugh and Laura caution not to increase the amount of red and green peppers or onion, as it could make the enchiladas too wet and they will be mushy.

Drinks to accompany the Enchiladas

A sparkling wine on its own is one choice, or you can use it in making either a Mimosa or a Bellini. Another option could be a Margarita.

Toro Bravo Sparkling Secco White is a terrific choice. New to the LCBO as of October, it is an absolute bargain, not just because of the price - $11.95 – but because it tastes really good! Made from the Spanish Verdejo grape, along with Sauvignon Blanc, it has a lime-citrus character that is quite refreshing, and a zestiness one can appreciate. It will work perfectly well on its own at a Christmas Brunch, but it is also a great choice when you want to mix up a Mimosa or Bellini, as we did with our Holiday Enchiladas.

Using the Toro Bravo Secco, we poured both a Mimosa and a Bellini.

The Mimosa is a blend of sparkling wine and orange juice, the Bellini a blend of sparkling wine and peach purée and/or peach nectar. Both are fairly simple to prepare. Just be careful when pouring the sparkling wine to make sure it doesn’t overflow the glass.

For our Mimosa, we pour about two-parts of sparkling wine to one-part of orange juice, preferably pulp-free. Pour one part of the wine first, then pour in the orange juice. We add about a tablespoon of orange liqueur to the drink prior to a finishing pour of sparkling wine, stirring minimally to blend, and then garnishing with a slice of orange.

With the Bellini, we first puréed some frozen peach slices in a blender along with enough peach nectar to facilitate blending. A good option would be to incorporate a good splash of peach schnapps to make it just a little sweeter. A slice of peach sets it off nicely.

The “Border” Lemon-Lime Margarita uses lemon juice, as limes in Mexico are less acidic than those we find north of the border, and our lemons come closer to the flavour sought. Begin by cutting some lime slices and placing them on a saucer, while pouring some salt on another saucer. Press the rim of a glass into the limes, to moisten, and then rotate the rim in the salt to coat. Mix two ounces of añejo tequila with one ounce of orange liqueur along with a tablespoon of fresh lemon juice, and place in a blender along with a handful of ice cubes, blending until smooth.

Pour carefully into the prepared glass – don’t disturb the coated rim! - and garnish with a slice of lime.

Whether you decide on any of these cocktails, or just pour a great cup of coffee, you will be very happy with your Christmas breakfast or brunch with these Holiday Enchiladas.

Vintages December 12 Release

This is the final release of the year, and while it is geared to tempt us to spend just a little more on some excellent wines, there are still great options at every end of the price spectrum

Sparkling Wine

Domaine Ste. Michelle Brut Sparkling, $19.95, from the state of Washington is made in the traditional method with a secondary fermentation in the bottle giving it a toasty nose of fresh-baked bread and showing some chalkiness and green apple notes on the palate, with a decent persistent flow of bubbles. It was on the Nov. 28 release but is still available and a very good buy.

Emile Beyer Extra Brut Blanc de Blancs Crémant D’Alsace, $25.95 is a good French alternative which earned a 91 from the Wine Enthusiast, which tells us it is “understated, bright, elegant and bone dry” carrying impressions of lemon and excellent carbonation.

White Wine

Ken Forrester Old Vine Reserve Chenin Blanc 2019, $17.95, is one of the best examples of the excellent Chenin Blanc wines from South Africa, where this grape has truly found a home. From vineyards planted in sandy soil, this wine is as rich as the soil is poor. The grapes were picked in two passes, the first, from the sunnier part of the vineyard going into stainless steel and the second from the cooler side fermented in barrel. John Szabo of considers it an extraordinary value providing amazing pleasure, saying it is “rich and fresh, creamy yet taut, fine-grained and lengthy with complexity rarely encountered under $20.” – 92.

Michel Gassier Embruns de Viognier 2019, $18.95, made in the Pays d’Oc region of southern France by an acknowledged outstanding producer, only undergoes 15 per cent malolactic fermentation, the process which softens the wine by converting the apple-like acidity to the creamier milk-like (lactic) type, retaining good tension and minerality. Expect this to be combined with ample stone fruit (peach/ apricot), resulting in a very refreshing and tasty white wine.

Dashwood Sauvignon Blanc 2019, $23.95, from Marlborough on New Zealand’s South Island, won the admiration of the Wine Spectator which referred to it as “aromatic and distinctive, with a thread of honeysuckle and litsea oil mingling with Meyer lemon, peach and apricot flavours that are generous and intense through the finish, showing a touch of savoury sea salt.” – 90. (litsea?? – “Litsea” is an evergreen plant producing a lemon-like oil. And now we know!)

Red Wine

This offering provides us with the opportunity to compare similar wines from the same producer. From Australia’s popular Sister’s Run, we have two shiraz wines, the Calvary Hill 2018, $19.95, and the Epiphany 2018, $17.95.

With a number of gold and silver medals, Calvary Hill, the winery tells us, “produces real depth - diving-bell like depth. And there is that classic Barossa dark, salted chocolate aroma and flavour. Cinnamon, nutmeg, liqueured chocolate, but all bound by a cloak of savouriness. The fruit heft is perfectly balanced by keen acidity, providing overarching structure. Indeed, this is an organized wine, with architectural qualities.”

In turn, the Epiphany, which seems to have been even more successful in competition, including a 93 from the Winemaker Challenge International competition, will be softer, with more milk chocolate notes along with some cedar, cooked blackberry jam, and rounded tannins.

Two Cabernet Sauvignons from Rodney Strong in California can offer a distinct contrast. Knotty Vines Cabernet Sauvignon 2017, $21.95, which may be late- arriving at our stores, has a generic “California” designation. While officially a ‘Cab Sauv’, it also has a good percentage of Merlot as well as dollops of Zinfandel and Petite Sirah. In a ‘decadently’ fruity style as Vintages suggests, you will also find it carries some mocha coffee notes. One drinker in the States summed it up as “Fun and approachable, nothing too snooty and sophisticated. Just tastes great without trying too hard!”

In comparison, the Rodney Strong Alexander Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 2016, $32.95, hails from the valley just north of Sonoma. The winery makes no mention of other grapes being blended in. Despite being a year older than the Knotty Vines example, it is still “intense and youthful” according to Sara d’Amato of also refers to “great focus as well as persistence of flavour”, suggesting we wait a couple of years for it to be at its best – 91. If you intend to drink it now, decant it first for a few hours.

On the regular list, but currently in short supply locally is Lacour Tourny 2018 from Bordeaux, $11.95. As a ‘Vin de Bordeaux’, it is sourced from the general area and is not site-specific, but, Boy, does it deliver! A blend of Merlot and Cabernet, it is eminently drinkable with well-managed tannins and good grip. Its entry is clean and very smooth with decent fruit and a subtle earthy or dark chocolate note. For a wine at this price point, it has decent persistence and out-performs many of its competitors that might set you back an additional $5 or $10. To call it just a ‘great everyday red’ doesn’t do it justice – when the occasion calls for something 'a little bit better' the Lacour Tourny 2018 will more than suffice.