Chicken Enchiladas

Right-o. Following the confusion that yesterday’s mention of condensed cream soup stirred up, perhaps I should have posted this recipe first as sort of a context for its use! As I mentioned earlier, we had Mexican theme night. Well, pseudo-Mexican, since we had to make do with what was available in a place which is just about as non-Mexican as you can get. I ended up going with a salad of baby greens tossed with avocado and cucumber, a pitcher of lemon-limeade, flan for dessert, and… chicken enchiladas. Keep in mind that I have never made Mexican food in my life, since there really was no point to doing so in Southern California. There were just so many good and cheap places to get it that it was completely unnecessary. Here in Finland, however, there are apparently no Mexican restaurants at all within a one hour drive of us (apparently, there is now a kiosk open in Turku) so if you want a burrito or taco, you’d better learn to make it yourself. So this is my first attempt at doing so 🙂

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Adapted from AR’s Angela’s Awesome Enchiladas. Because, well, with a name like that, how could I not try it? They turned out pretty good, too. I’ll need to do some further cheese hunting to find a more appropriate mix for the topping, and probably will adjust the seasoning proportions a little in the future, but it went over very well with the family.

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Ingredients list, part 1! 2 pounds of shredded skinless and boneless chicken. The recipe specifies white meat, but I usually wouldn’t care less what part of the chicken it came from, as long as it came from a chicken. 1 10.75-ounce can of condensed cream of chicken soup (or whatever you made as a substitute), 1.25 cups of sour cream, 1/4 teaspoon chili powder, 1 tablespoon of butter, 1 small chopped onion (I miscalculated and was fresh out of bulb onions, so just used the quasi-bulbs off the bottoms of a bunch of green onions), 1 4-ounce can of chopped green chilies (I skipped this, since we’re not big on chilies here), 1 bunch of chopped green onions divided in two batches, 1 cup water, 1 teaspoon lime juice, 1/2 teaspoon onion powder, 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder, 3 cups of shredded cheese divided into two batches (the recipe specifically calls for cheddar, but I wasn’t able to find any of that so just grabbed the pizza cheese mix instead), and 1 10-ounce can of enchilada sauce (which was not available here, so I whipped up my own in a food processor).

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Ingredients, part 2… 1 1.25-ounce package of mild taco seasoning mix, a package or two of flour tortillas (I used a medium-smallish size so that I’d be able to make up more rolls per person for the final dish), and 1 6-ounce can of sliced black olives. Optional fixings include guacamole (the one pictured, for the record, was absolutely disgusting and I would not recommend anybody to buy the European Old El Paso brand of jarred gauc unless they like the taste of ground up, rotten walnuts that have been left on the compost heap for a good week) and sliced avocados.

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Prep time! Okay, so this all took place the night before I put the dish together, but I figured I’d toss it in anyway. Defrosted chicken, going into the pot to simmer for a good 45 minutes or so in a covered pot with just some salt and pepper.

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Fish out the pieces after ascertaining that they are indeed fully cooked. Keep the broth to reduce and use for stock. Cut up (or grind up) the pieces of skin and give them to the cats for a tasty treat, if you are so predisposed.

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Shred the chicken in your favorite manner. Two forks back to back, pulling the meat apart, does work wonderfully, as the recipe suggests. Shred finely if you’re going to be making several rolls. Set aside.

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If you find that your supermarket does not sell enchilada sauce, as mine did not, rest assured that it is really nothing but a more liquid version of taco sauce that is used in baking. Grab a jar of taco sauce (or even some salsa) and toss it in the food processor with however much crushed tomatoes you need to make the amount of sauce the recipe calls for. Blend until there are no large lumps. A smoothie-like consistency, I’d say.

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My homemade condensed cream of chicken substitute, also made the night before.

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Fast forward to an hour and a half before dinner! Combine the cream of chicken, sour cream and chili powder in a saucepan over low heat.

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Bring to a simmer, stirring to mix as the ingredients melt together. Remove from heat and cover to keep warm.

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Cook onions in butter over medium heat, until they soften and turn translucent.

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Add shredded chicken, green chilies (if you’ve got them), taco seasoning, half the chopped green onions, and water. Mix thoroughly and simmer for 10 minutes.

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Mix in onion powder and garlic powder.

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Stir in lime juice and simmer for an additional 10 minutes.

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Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Stir 1 cup of soup mixture into the skillet with the chicken mixture.

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Spread the remaining soup mixture on the bottom of a 9×13 inch baking dish. I’m using a fairly deep dish here because I’ve had problems with overflow on my shorter 9×13 in the past.

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Fill each tortilla with chicken mixture and sprinkle cheese over the filling before rolling up. Remember to reserve half the cheese for topping the dish.

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Place filled tortillas in the pan, seam-side down. I ended up with 12 smallish-medium rolls and almost everybody averaged 2 rolls apiece, so there was enough to feed 6 people.

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Pour enchilada sauce evenly over the entire dish. Cover with remaining 1.5 cups of cheese. Sprinkle remaining half of green onionsand sliced olives over the top. Bake in preheated oven until everything is heated through and the cheese is bubbling and melty. Around 25 minutes or so. Serve while hot. Garnish with slices of avocado. Provide sour cream and guacamole on the side.

One Comment:

  1. Pingback: Do It Yourself: Condensed Cream of Chicken Soup (Version One) « Velvet Kerfuffle Kitchen and Garden

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