Sunday, March 11, 2012

Green Chile Chicken Enchiladas, Lazy Susans, and Mexican Groceries

What a weekend!  My birthday was fantastic, thanks for asking.  I had a lovely happy hour at Durant's and then ventured on to meet up with a friend in Tempe that may or may not have resulted in us being asked in the kindest and mildest version of Cantonese to "hurry up and get the hell out."  ((At least that's what I got from what the 5'1 man was yelling.  It turns out lazy Susan's in the middle of the table are not there for sport.  Whoops.))  Friday was dedicated to shopping for the event I cooked for on Saturday and doing a few of the make-ahead style dishes prior to venturing out to a concert.  Saturday was sixteen glorious hours on my feet and I loved every minute of it.

The menu ((which I got to plan)) for my lovely friend Kristina's housewarming consisted of charred salsa, tomatillo salsa, guacamole, deviled crab dip ((with one full pound of crab claw)), gazpacho, green chile chicken enchiladas, beef enchiladas, Spanish rice, green chile corn muffins with honey butter, and Mayan fudge cupcakes with chocolate-cinnamon buttercream frosting.  Within two hours, there were nothing but crumbs and empty platters spinning on the counter remaining.  Everything was a big hit.

The enchiladas were undoubtedly the most popular ((although 8 dozen cupcakes disappeared quite handily too.))  I made double batches of both and probably could have made a triple or a quad.  Next time.

Green Chile Sour Cream Chicken Verde Enchiladas and Beef Enchiladas
Let's start with the Green Chile Chicken ones, shall we?  This is from a recipe I found on Allrecipes which is a really solid site.  I modified it very slightly just to be contrary.  I'll give the proportions for a single batch.  I'm sure you are better at doing math to double it than I am.

What you need:

3-4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts or rotisserie chicken
1/2 teaspoon of ground cumin
6 tablespoons of fresh cilantro
1 15 oz can of black beans, drained and rinsed
4 green chiles roasted and diced ((or you can use one can if you must))
1 10 oz can of green enchilada sauce
12 6-inch corn tortillas
2 cups of shredded Mexican cheese  ((or more))
1 8 oz container of sour cream

What you do:

Start with the chicken.  You have options.  The best way to do this would be to throw 3-4 chicken breasts in a slow cooker with just a little bit of cumin and maybe a small amount of the enchilada sauce and green chiles for several hours so that you can shred them.  ((Shredding is easy.  Just take 2 forks and start pulling the meat apart.))  The second best way is to put your chicken breasts into a saute pan with a little bit of olive oil and the cumin until they are cooked through.  Remove to a cutting board and slice them into smallish pieces.  ((That's what I did.))   Or you could get a rotisserie chicken from the market and use that.  Whatever floats your boat.  

Whatever you use, once your chicken is cooked and either diced/shredded, move it to a medium bowl and add the cilantro, black beans, and green chiles.   Mix it around to combine. 

((Roasting green chiles is really easy and it smells DIVINE.  I simply throw them on the grill once it is really effing hot.  Let the skins get black and blistery and bubbly on all sides.  Remove them to a plate, throw a dish towel over it, and walk away for ten minutes.  When you come back, the skins will be easy to remove just by pinching them.))  

Take an 11x17 baking dish and spread in about half a can of the enchilada sauce.  ((To pick a good sauce, go to the ethnic foods aisle at the supermarket or to a Mexican grocery store if possible ((much, much easier for those of you in the Southwest)) and pick the can that has the most words in a language you maybe only moderately understand.  That's my strategy and it worked.))   Layer 6 of the corn tortillas over the sauce, overlapping them and attempting to get them up the sides of the dish by "glueing" them with the sauce.  Spoon half of the chicken mixture over the tortillas, then add half the cheese, and half the sour cream.  Dump on the rest of the sauce, add another layer of 6 tortillas and the rest of your chicken mixture.  

Cover with foil and bake at 375 for about 30-40 minutes.  Then remove the foil, add the rest of the cheese and dot sour cream all over the top and bake uncovered for an additional 10 minutes until the cheese is bubbly and the sour cream is melty.  Let it stand for 10 minutes prior to serving and garnish with more fresh cilantro.  

Nutritional info:  ((assuming this is 8 servings))  Time for the elliptical.  Approximately 375 calories and 24 grams of fat.  It could certainly be reduced by using fat free cheese and fat free sour cream although that just doesn't sound as fun.


I'll be back after bit with the info for the beef enchiladas and maybe a few other items.  As always, thanks for reading along and sharing.    

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