Enchiladas, how do I love thee?

I love all the enchiladas! Pork, chicken, ground beef, brisket and yes even just plain cheese ones!! This meal was also inspired by my Magnolia Table cookbook and it came out much better than the bungle of a pork roast that I made! Yes, I stayed much closer to the recipe this time.

Here is what Jo says:

  • Two 10 ounce cans of green enchilada sauce
  • One 15 ounce can of cream of chicken soup
  • 8 ounces sour cream
  • One 4 ounce can of diced green chiles
  • 14 ounces shredded mozzerella cheese
  • 4 cups shredded chicken
  • 10 ten inch flour tortillas
  • tomato, cilantro and lime wedges for toppings

Combine enchilada sauce, soup and sour cream for the sauce. Combine the chilies and chicken for stuffing. Put 1/2 cup of the sauce in the bottom of a baking dish and spread it so that it covers the bottom, this helps the enchiladas not to stick. In the center of the tortillas sprinkle a little cheese, add the chicken chili mix and roll up, place the tortilla rolls seam side down in the dish and cover with the remaining sauce. Bake for 20 minutes at 350, sprinkle the remaining cheese over top and continue baking for about 15 more minutes until the cheese is all melty. Serve topped with tomatoes and cilantro and rice or beans for a side.

I liked the sound of this so I didn’t stray too far. I wanted more of a green chili flavor and a bit of bite from cheddar cheese so I used 2 cans of the diced chiles, cream of celery soup and a shredded Mexican cheese blend that has some spices added.

I will start my tale with the chicken and go in order of the layers. I had a bag of boneless skinless chicken breasts and I seasoned them with garlic powder, cumin, oregano, smoked paprika and sazon goya- we talked about this back in the chicken taco episode. Seasoned both sides, poured a can of Rotel over top of them, covered them with foil and baked them at 200 for almost an hour. Again with the low and slow method so that the chicken cooks but doesn’t dry out. No matter how tasty and magical your sauce and toppings are they will not be able to fix dry chicken. Also in a dish like this that gets cooked twice the chicken doesn’t really need to be initially cooked all the way to temp, just enough to kill most of the cooties so that the rest of the dish isn’t contaminated.

For the sauce I decided to get fancy. There is a place here that serves a green chili bisque so good that it makes me weep and I wanted to see if I could do something like that for this so I minced about half of a sweet onion and started it softening with a little butter, salt, black garlic powder and black pepper. I drained the liquid from one can of the chiles and kept the juice from the other in a little bowl to use as a simmering liquid. Once the onions were soft I added the chiles, another bit of butter and turned the heat up to medium and let them hang out until the butter was cooked away and then I switched to the pepper juice and once that was out I added a little beef broth and after about 15 minutes of simmering I was out of juice so I turned up the heat to medium high and once the veg started to brown and stick to the pan I deglazed with some white wine and reduced the heat back to medium and let the wine cook down for 3 or 4 minutes before I added the cans of enchilada sauce and let that simmer down for another 10 minutes so that the onions and chiles could get all happy with the sauce. Once it was the brilliance that I had imagined I left it to cool while I mixed up the soup and sour cream.

I decided that I wanted rice inside of my enchiladas and as a side. I used a package of Spanish rice for the inside and made cilantro lime rice for the side.

We have chicken, sauce, cheese and in my case rice so let’s build this dish. I used the Mexican blend cheese for the stuffing and saved the mozz for the topping. So a little cheese, a little rice, a little chicken and roll up like a burrito and place into the dish. Yes, we put some sauce in the bottom of the dish, that may be the most important step! I didn’t have one dish large enough so I ended up with 2 pans which ended up being perfect because I gifted that second pan! Back to the work, when everyone is in the dish or dishes pour the rest of the sauce over top making sure to get all the edges covered so there aren’t any burnt ends and bake at 350 for about 20 minutes.  My pro tip here is to put the baking dish on a sheet tray or put a tray in the bottom of the oven to catch any cheese drips or sauce bubble overs, this can get messy and messy ovens can cause fires and fires can ruin dinner. After about 15 or 20 minutes, when the sauce is bubbly and delicious smelling pull them out and sprinkle the rest of the cheese on top and put them right back in for about 10 minutes or until the cheese is all the way melted and bubbly. We like a little bit of crisp to our cheesy edges so I turned the broiler on low and let the cheese get golden brown and delicious.

We have talked about cilantro lime rice before and this batch wasn’t any different, comes from a box but I add fresh cilantro, lime zest and scallions. Nothing really new with that other than I used water instead of wine to cook the rice in. I could have used a mix of chicken broth and water but I didn’t think of that at cook time.

I forgot but I made a pico type of topping. Chopped tomato, diced white onion, cilantro, lemon juice and a roasted poblano pepper with a pinch of salt and pepper.

For the final plating we had the enchiladas topped with the pico and cilantro with the rice on the side and a Tecate.

Thanks ya’ll!! Happy cooking!

 

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