Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Creamy Cheesy Enchiladas

This is an enchilada for when what you really want is 80+% nice creamy cheese sauce, 20-% enchilada. You could of course adapt this to have a more hearty filling (that's what Michelle would do - there would probably be more vegetables involved and it would be awesome), but Linda and I wanted something warm and cheesy. 

My mom, her best friend and her friend's daughter, whom we've known for about 20 years, came over for dinner and to check out our apartment, which is still kind of new to us since we moved in mid-July. I got home from work at about 5:15 and they were coming to eat at 6:30, so I wanted to make a dinner without much prep. Butternut squash soup, rice and these enchiladas soup fit the bill.

For more traditional-ish or different enchiladas, try:

Vegetarian Enchiladas with Mole Sauce
Enchiladas with Mango Sauce
Pumpkin Enchiladas with Green Tomato Sauce
Pumpkin Enchiladas

And for normal enchiladas, make your own enchilada sauce.

Creamy Cheesy Enchiladas
Adapted from the Pioneer Woman

2-1/2 cups Cooked, Shredded Chicken
2 cups chicken broth
3 Tablespoons canola oil
12 whole corn tortillas
1 whole onion, diced
3 cloves garlic, diced
3 whole 4 oz cans whole green chilies, diced (I didn't include these this time - apparently canned chilies are a seasonal food at TJ's - have to make way for all the pumpkin..)
1 whole jalapeno, seeded and finely diced (Didn't include this either because my mom is very sensitive to spice - the rest of use just used hot sauce)
1 teaspoon paprika
1 teaspoon cumin
1/2 cup heavy cream
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons flour (I used gluten free flour for Linda and it worked fine)
1 cup sour cream
2-1/2 cups monterey jack cheese, grated
salt and pepper, to taste
hot sauce (optional)
cilantro, chopped

If you want you can fry the tortillas on a hot oiled skillet for 20 seconds each - this is done to soften them up and prevent breaking. I usually skip this step if you can't actually see the tortillas, like in this dish. If you fry them, place them on paper towels.

Chicken filling:
Heat 1 tablespoon canola oil in separate skillet over medium heat. Add onions, garlic and jalapenos and cook for a couple minutes. Add chicken, half of the green chilies, and 1/2 teaspoon paprika and 1 teaspoon cumin. Stir together. Add 1/2 cup chicken broth and stir. Add cream and stir, allowing mixture to bubble and get hot. Turn off heat and set aside.

Cheese sauce:
In a separate large skillet, melt butter and sprinkle in flour. Whisk together and cook over medium heat for one minute. Pour in 1 1/2 cups chicken broth. Whisk together and cook for another minute or two. Stir in the other half of the chilies. Reduce heat, then stir in sour cream. Add 1 1/2 cups grated cheese and stir to melt. Add 1/2 teaspoon paprika. Check seasoning and add salt and pepper as needed.

To assemble, spoon chicken mixture on top of tortillas, one by one. Top with plenty of cheese sauce and roll up. Place seam side down in a 9 x 13 casserole dish.

Pour cheese mixture all over the top of the tortillas. Top with extra cheese if you'd like, then bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes. 

Sprinkle generously with chopped cilantro. Serve with hot sauce, if desired.

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