Thursday, May 6, 2010

Daily Dish - Cinco De Mayo Enchiladas

It seems that Cinco De Mayo is one of those adopted holidays that we celebrate on account of needing an excuse to drink, as if an excuse were needed.  This is the reason that my husband has fittingly dubbed it "cinco de drinko".  It's up there with St. Patty's day and I wonder how many people even know the significance of either holiday.  Either way, my festive side was inspired to cook up a tasty Mexican treat for dinner last night.  I've been working late a lot recently so needed a quick and simple, but of course tasty, dinner.  I opted for my version of enchiladas and here's the recipe - I think the whole thing takes 30 minutes, 15 of which the food is in the oven which gives you more time to sip on that margarita while waiting.

1 large chicken breast
Fajita or taco seasoning (husband makes ours so you can make your own, or get it at the store)
1 cup (or so) shredded Cheddar cheese
8 Flour tortillas
1 can enchilada sauce
Chopped onion (I used green onion last night, but a regular onion would work too)
Olives for garnish (optional)
Sour cream (also optional)

Disclaimer - I don't usually measure stuff and these are all estimates!

Step 1 - Season the chicken with fajita or taco seasoning.  If you don't have any handy, I suggest a mixture of chili powder, cumin, cayenne pepper, salt, garlic powder, and paprika.  Once the chicken is suitably sprinkled with the good stuff, pop it on the grill.  I cheated and used the George Foreman seeing as it cooks anything in about 6 minutes.  Of course, you're more than welcome to use a pan. 

Step 2 - While the chicken is cooking, take this opportunity to prep all your other necessary bits and pieces.  This means chop up the onion, shred the cheese and, if you aren't using diced olives, cut those up too.  I noted that you need a cup of shredded cheese in the ingredients list - that's a total estimate.  You'll need enough to sprinkle a little bit inside each enchilada as well as a nice layer on top.  In our house, we're uber cheesy so probably use more than we should.  Our fat intake thanks us.

Somewhere around this point I believe I preheated the oven to 375.

Step 3 - Once the chicken is cooked, you'll want to shred it.  I've seen recipes before suggest you pull it apart with your hands.  Now, keeping in mind the chicken just came off the grill and it's hot, I came up with my own ingenious solution to this that doesn't involve second degree burns.  So, grab 2 forks and use one to anchor the chicken while you pull off bits of chicken with the other.

Step 4 - Grab your pyrex dish (which should be wide enough to fit a tortilla) and open up the can of enchilada sauce.  Pour a little of the sauce on the bottom of the pyrex, which will prevent the tortillas sticking.  Now all your stuff is ready, pop the tortillas in the microwave for about 30 seconds to warm them and make them easier to roll up.  Inside each tortilla, put some chicken, a sprinkling of cheese (don't forget to save some for the top) and onion.  Then roll the tortilla into a tube and place it in the pyrex with the flap facing down (so that it doesn't unravel). 

Step 5
- Once all the tortillas are rolled and snug in the pyrex, pour on the enchilada sauce.  Make sure you get the sauce down the sides and in between the tortillas too.  We usually use a half can because for some reason enchilada sauce comes in the 28oz cans and there's just far too much!  If you like your food super saucy though, go for it.  Once it's been sauced, sprinkle the rest of the cheese on top, then add the olives if you've elected to use them. 

At this point, you just pop the dish in the oven for 15-20 minutes until the sauce is bubbling and the cheese has all melted.  I took those 15 minutes to make a little rice and heat up some refried beans for side dishes.  Once the enchiladas are on the plate, you can also add a dollop of sour cream (which I did right after taking this photo).  The best part, this fed both of us and we had leftovers for lunch!  
Do any of you have a good, quick and tasty Mexican recipe to share?  If so, would love to hear it!!

1 comment :

  1. Awe that looks soo yummy. Great informative photos too.