Thursday, July 5, 2018

Chicken Enchiladas with Red Sauce

So when my husband asked me to make Enchiladas for the first time I must admit that I was ....
reluctant to say the least - I like them at the restaurant but I couldn't imagine how much work they would take. I remember my mom making them for us a kids and they were good but they definitely didn't become a staple at home. With this recipe that I tried they have now become a staple in the house and they are a great, easy go-to week night meal. They can be made the easy way or more complicated. For us the more complicated version means making the tortillas at home using our tortilla press. I usually make a double batch of the red sauce and the second container usually finds a home with someone or I freeze it for next time!

If you manage your time properly and start the sauce and then cook the filling while the sauce is reducing this recipe takes about 1 hour total (including cooking, preparing, baking, and waiting).

Enchilada Red Sauce

2 tbsp avocado oil (I usually use vegetable oil or a avocado/veggie hybrid oil)
2 tbsp all-purpose flour (I have used GF flour before as well)
2 tbsp chili powder
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp ground cumin
1/4 tsp dried oregano
2 cups chicken stock

  1. Heat oil in small saucepan over medium-high heat. Add flour and whisk together over the heat for one minute.
  2. Stir in the remaining seasoning and stir for another minute or so.
  3. Gradually add the stock, whisking constantly to remove the lumps and simmer for 10 to 15 minutes until thickened slightly.
I consider this sauce to be mild enough for me (I usually like spice at level 3 on a scale from 1 to 10 with 10 being the hottest - yes I am a wimp!)

Chicken Enchiladas

2 tbsp avocado oil (or vegetable oil)
1 small white onion, peeled and diced
1 1/2 pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts, diced into small 1/2-inch pieces
Salt and pepper
1  x 4 ounce can died green chiles
1 x 15.5 ounce can of black beans, rinsed and drained
8 Large tortillas (I use a corn tortilla usually as there is a Smart Fiest one we love)
3 cups shredded cheese (Mexican blend or cheddar cheese)
1 batch of the red enchilada sauce
Topping: cilantro and/or cilantro lime crema

  1. Preheat oven to 350F.
  2. In a large sauté pan,  head oil over medium-high heat. Add onion and sauté for 3 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add diced chicken and green chiles (I usually only use 1/2 a can). Season with salt and pepper - I sometimes also sprinkle a little oregano and cumin on the chicken as well. Saute for 6 to 8 minutes, stirring occasionally until the chicken is cooked through.
  3. Remove from heat - at this point I chop up the chicken mixture even more finely but this is a preference only.
  4. Prepare a 9 x 13 inch baking dish - spray with cooking spray (please trust me this is a MUST) I often place a good spoonful or two of sauce on the bottom.
  5. To assemble use an assembly line:
    1. Tortilla
    2. Enchilada sauce
    3. beans
    4. chicken
    5. cheese
  6. Lay out the tortilla, spread two tablespoons of sauce over the surface of the tortilla, add the beans in a line down the middle, add a spoonful of the chicken mixture (I've learned to divide it roughly in the pan) sprinkle with cheese, roll up and place in the baking dish with the seem down and then repeat with the remaining ingredients.
  7. Spread the remaining sauce and cheese on the top (at this point I usually end up shredding extra cheese)
  8. Bake for 20 minutes and then serve immediately.

Cilantro Lime Cream

Mix the following together:
1 cup sour cream
1 lime - zested and then juiced
1 handful cilantro (about 1/4 cup chopped well)
Salt to taste

this is best made a head and I warn it is highly addictive!

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