Monday, October 18, 2010

Green Enchiladas (boy, it's been awhile!)

Well.  Here I am after a year.  It's been a long, strange trip indeed!
I just turned 32 on Sunday.  I made green enchiladas today.  A friend asked for the recipe, so here we go!

I wasn't planning to blog this. The image was done with my cell phone camera.  We must all deal with it.

I didn't use a recipe!

But, I'll make one up for what I did!

Useful tools:
a saucepan that will hold at least four cups of liquid
a baking pan with high sides (I used a 9X13 Wilton baking pan.  Glass casserole dishes are handy, too)
a sharp kitchen knife (you'll need to to cut your onion)
a stick blender (or a heat resistant blender/food processor)
tongs (for gently frying the tortillas and not your fingers)
a whisk if you don't have a stick blender
a sexy ladle (or a non-sexy ladle, if you prefer)
measuring cups, spoons
head-sized bowl
a couple forks (to shred the chicken)

For the sauce
1 28 oz can of Tomatillos (or similar amount equaling 1lb, 12 oz)
4 cloves of garlic, mushed or whole.  Whatever!  No pesky, smelly dicing!
1 half a yellow or white onion (or go nuts and try a red onion!), roughly chopped
a handful of cilantro, which is approximately 1/4 cup of loosely packed leaves and stems (please rinse it!)
1 teaspoon cumin
1/4 cup sour cream
salt to taste (I sprinkled in maybe a half a teaspoon at most)
(optional) a tablespoon of starch mixed with about three tablespoons of water to thicken stuff up at the end
the water leftover from poaching the chicken (I guess there was about 2 cups of chickeny water in there)

For spicy heat:
I used one little bird chili pepper.

1 jalapeño would be good, instead (pickled would add more tang to the flavour of the recipe).  Maybe a teaspoon of cayenne, if you'd really like some kicky heat.  A single scotch bonnet/habanero would also provide a great deal of burn.  To reduce the heat of a fresh chili, CAREFULLY remove the seeds.
I think a little experience with chili peppers would come in handy, here, but you can be ballsy and try something new!

For the rest:
about a pound of chicken breast, poached (check this out for how to do that!)
12 corn tortillas

about 1 cup of oil for frying the tortillas (a note on that video: PLEASE do not fry your tortillas with your FINGERS.  :(  Use tongs.  Sheesh.)
about 2 cups of shredded cheddar, monterey jack cheese or similar textured cheese, separated into 1 cup each


1. Poach your chicken.  Save your water for the sauce.
2. While the chicken is cooking, get the skins off your garlic cloves and prep your onion.
3. Pop open your can of tomatillos.
4. Remove cooked chicken from the water and set it aside to shred.
5. Pour all contents of tomatillo can into the saucepan of chicken water.  Add onion and garlic and any heat seasonings you wish to use.
6. Bring to a boil until onion is soft.
7. Reduce heat to a simmer.  Season with cumin and salt.  Add the cilantro.
8. Blend the heck out of it with your stick blender or in your heat-resistant blender/food processor.  Blend 'til smooth.
9. Optional thickening: Return to heat and slowly add the starch and water mix.  If you are using the stick blender, keep it running while you do this.  If you do not have one, use a whisk during this stage.

You should have a pretty decent amount of enchilada sauce now!

10. Take two forks and use one to hold the chicken in place and the other to drag across the surface of the chicken.  This action should produce shredded chicken!
11. In a head-sized bowl: mix chicken with sour cream, about 1/2 cup to 3/4 cups of your enchilada sauce, 1 cup of cheese.  Set aside.  This is your filling.  Stuff is really coming together now!
12. Ladle a coating of enchilada sauce into the bottom of your baking pan.  Make sure it's all covered or things might stick to the pan and then you have enchilada mush!
12. Fry your tortillas in hot oil.  Just barely.  If it's hard and crispy, you're set for tostadas...  I usually fry 3-4 at a time and then...
13. Place about 2 tablespoons of filling in your fried tortilla and roll it up.  Place it seam down in the pan.  Lay them side by side.
14. Once you have all your rolls done, spoon more sauce over the top and then sprinkle with the other cup of cheese.
15. Cheat time and put your oven rack up high, turn on the broiler and brown the top of your enchiladas until they're bubbly and awesome.  Be careful!  Don't leave the stove for a second.  It WILL burn when you turn away, out of spite.
If the broiler makes you uncomfy, try baking at about 450°F and see how that goes.  I should try it so I can tell you if it works or not!  Maybe one of you can!  Assignments for everyone!

I served dinner with some shredded iceberg lettuce, partially smooshed black beans, a squooze of lime over it all and a dollop of sour cream.* 

*Sour cream not included in photographic evidence.

(I stole the chili pepper photo from here: A blog! If this does not agree with you and you are responsible for the photo, please contact me and I will remove it with my apologies.)


Pyat said...

That looks delicious!