What is Chicken Enchiladas?
Enchiladas originated in Mexico, where the practice of rolling tortillas around other food dates back at least to Mayan times. The people living in the lake region of the Valley of Mexico traditionally ate corn tortillas folded or rolled around small fish. Writing at the time of the Spanish conquistadors, Bernal Díaz del Castillo documented a feast enjoyed by Europeans hosted by Hernán Cortés in Coyoacán, which included foods served in corn tortillas. Traditionally, enchiladas consist of a tortilla stuffed with meat and other food items, which is rolled up, covered with a spicy sauce, and baked. However, this dish can be filled and covered with a seemingly endless variety of ingredients.
Ingredients for 8 servings
- 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 1 1/2 pounds skinless boneless chicken breast
- Salt and pepper
- 2 teaspoons cumin powder
- 2 teaspoons garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon Mexican Spice Blend
- 1 red onion, chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 cup frozen corn, thawed
- 5 canned whole green chiles, seeded and coarsely chopped
- 4 canned chipotle chiles, seeded and minced
- 1 (28-ounce) can stewed tomatoes
- 1/2 teaspoon all-purpose flour
- 16 corn tortillas
- 1 1/2 cups enchilada sauce, canned
- 1 cup shredded Cheddar and Jack cheeses
- Garnish: chopped cilantro leaves, chopped scallions, sour cream, chopped tomatoes
Coat large saute pan with oil. Season chicken with salt and pepper. Brown chicken over medium heat, allow 7 minutes each side or until no longer pink. Sprinkle chicken with cumin, garlic powder and Mexican spices before turning. Remove chicken to a platter, allow to cool.
Saute onion and garlic in chicken drippings until tender. Add corn and chiles. Stir well to combine. Add canned tomatoes, saute 1 minute.
Pull chicken breasts apart by hand into shredded strips. Add shredded chicken to saute pan, combine with vegetables. Dust the mixture with flour to help set.
Microwave tortillas on high for 30 seconds. This softens them and makes them more pliable. Coat the bottom of 2 (13 by 9-inch) pans with a ladle of enchilada sauce. Using a large shallow bowl, dip each tortilla in enchilada sauce to lightly coat. Spoon 1/4 cup chicken mixture in each tortilla. Fold over filling, place 8 enchiladas in each pan with seam side down. Top with remaining enchilada sauce and cheese.
Bake for 15 minutes in a preheated 350 degree F oven until cheese melts.
Optional: Garnish with cilantro, scallion, sour cream and chopped tomatoes before serving. Serve with Spanish rice and beans.