Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Enchila-la's

by Steph

Today I have a recipe for you.

It is NOT from Pioneer Woman (although she has a similar one of course).

This is a recipe for enchiladas.

"My grandmother whispered this recipe into my ear on her death bed." Name that movie!!! (That's a tougher one...)

Anyway, my grandma isn't on her deathbed, but she did teach my mother to make enchiladas and ipso facto, my mom taught me. However, somewhere along the way I modified it a bit...

This is Lazy Mexican Enchilada Lasagna.

Meaning, I do NOT roll each individual enchilada because a) I've burned my hands way too many times on hot tortillas, b) it triples the amount of dishes you will dirty and c) THEY TASTE EXACTLY THE SAME BOTH WAYS.

Now let's just take a minute to talk about the most important ingredient: the sauce. When you are buying sauce in a can (because that's how the real Mexicans do it) look for the one that has a label entirely in Spanish and all you can understand is the "enchilada" on it. Trust me. This is the real stuff. None of this Las Palmas or whatever business... we're not making Taco Bell enchiladas. We want the stuff that was made in Mexico.

Here it is (for you Kelley!):
  • 1 can of enchilada sauce (it doesn't have to be a huge can - just depends on how "saucy" you want your enchiladas to be
  • chicken breasts (bone-in preferrably)
  • cheese
  • tortillas
  • oil
  • 2 skillets
  • 1 casserole dish
  • tongs
  • grater
  • cutting board
  • fork
Look at that! That should be everything you should be using. If you have like 12 pans - you're doing it wrong.

First, boil the chicken and when it's done, shred it with a fork and tongs. (Ignore that this is boneless chicken - that's all I had)
 Grate your cheese (about 2 cups makes really cheesy enchiladas so you can do more or less depending on what you want)
 Grab your tortillas. Again, the ones that have Spanish all over the package would probably be the best tasting.
 Heat some oil in a small skillet and the enchilada sauce in another skillet. Once the oil is nice and sizzly, throw in a tortilla. (But don't throw it because the oil will be all sizzly and you might get burned. BE VERY CAREFUL WITH HOT OIL PEOPLE!!!)

You want the tortilla to be a little stiff because the next step will soften it up. Maybe 10-15 seconds on each side? Just eyeball it. You'll be fine.
Once the tortilla is done, drop it into the enchilada sauce and let it sit for a few minutes. Do NOT forget about it and walk away because the longer it sits, the softer the tortilla gets which means when you try to pull it out, its going to crumple and shred.
 Put your tortilla into the casserole dish. (Hint: Hold the enchilada sauce skillet very close to the casserole dish so you don't drip enchilada sauce all over the place.)
 And repeat with more tortillas. How many you want is up to you. This recipe is very freeing... you can do whatever you want! Kinda.

Once you have your layer of tortillas, add a layer of chicken, a layer of cheese and repeat the whole thing until the dish is full.

 Heat your oven to 350 degrees and bake it for 20 minutes.

Optional Refried Beans recipe: While that's baking, use some of the leftover oil from the tortillas and heat it in a bigger skillet and once its sizzly again, add a can of pinto beans. When they start bubbling, mash them with a potato masher and then simmer until the enchiladas are done. You can add some salt if the beans don't already have salt in them.

Ta-da!!!



 Ooh la la... look how pretty. And yummy.