Enchiladas Verde Con Pollo
Total time: Plan for 3 hours your first time, 2 hours each time after that.
The 2010 May Daring Cooks challenge was hosted by Barbara of Barbara Bakes and Bunnee of Anna+Food, and they chose a delicious Stacked Green Chile & Grilled Chicken Enchilada recipe in celebration of Cinco de Mayo! The recipe, featuring a homemade enchilada sauce was found on www.finecooking.com and written by Robb Walsh.
6-8 fresh Anaheim chiles (or 4-5 pasillas)
4-6 tomatillos – peeled, with stems removed
4 cups Chicken broth
1 clove Garlic, minced
2 teaspoons yellow onion, minced
1 teaspoon dried oregano
½ tsp Kosher salt (add more to taste)
¼ tsp Black Pepper (add more to taste)
Hot sauce, your favorite (optional)
2 Boneless chicken breasts (you can also use bone-in chicken breasts or thighs)
3 tablespoons Olive oil or other neutral vegetable oil (use more as needed)
Kosher salt and pepper
12 Small Corn tortillas (5-6 inch/13-15 cm). (you can also use wheat tortillas or other wraps)
6 ounces grated Monterey Jack, 170 grams (other cheeses (cheddar, pepper jack, Mexican cheeses) can be used. Just be sure they melt well and complement the filling)
Cilantro for garnish, chopped and sprinkled (optional)
Pureed Peppers and Tomatillos
Roasting Fresh Chiles
1. Coat each chile with a little vegetable oil. If you are doing only a couple chiles, using the gas stove works. For larger batches (as in this recipe), grilling or broiling is faster.
2. Lay the oiled chiles on the grill or baking sheet (line pan with foil for simpler clean-up). Place the grill or broil close to the element, turning the chiles so they char evenly. They should be black and blistered.
3. As they are completely charred (they will probably not all be done at once), remove them to a bowl and cover with plastic. Let them rest until they are cool, about 10 minutes.
4. Pull on the stem and the seed core MAY pop out. Open the chile and remove the seeds. Turn the chile skin side up and with a paring knife, scrape away the skin. Sometimes it just pulls right off, sometimes you really have to scrape it. (I kept the seeds in the pepper.)
5. DO NOT RINSE!
Corn tortillas made with masa
Green Chile Sauce
1. Put a medium saucepan of water on to boil. Boil the tomatillos until soft, 5 to 10 minutes. You can also grill the tomatillos until soft. (I prefer to grill mine, along with all peppers, onions, and garlic.)
2. Drain and puree in a blender or food processor, add roasted green chiles, peppers, onions and garlic, and blend some more.
3. Return the tomatillo-chile mixture to the saucepan along with the chicken broth, oregano, salt and pepper.
4. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat and then reduce the heat and simmer for 20 minutes.
5. Adjust seasonings and add hot sauce if you want a little more heat.
Stacked Green Chile and Grilled Chicken Enchiladas
1. Heat a gas grill to medium high or build a medium-hot charcoal. Coat the chicken with olive oil and season well with salt and pepper. Preheat oven to 450 degrees.
2. Grill the chicken until just cooked through, 4-5 minutes a side for boneless chicken breasts.
3. Cool and then slice into thin strips or shred.
Skip steps 4-12 if you’re just rolling your enchiladas.
4. In a small skillet, heat 3 tablespoons oil over medium-high heat until very hot. Dip the edge of a tortilla into the oil to check – it should sizzle immediately.
5. Using tongs, put a tortilla into the pan and cook until soft and lightly brown on each side, about 15-20 seconds per side (at the most).
6. Drain on paper towels.
7. Add oil as needed and continue until all 12 tortillas are done.
8. In a baking dish large enough to hold four separate stacks of tortillas, ladle a thin layer of sauce.
9. Lay four tortillas in the dish and ladle another ½ cup (4 ounces/112 grams) of sauce over the tortillas.
10. Divide half the chicken among the first layer of tortillas, top with another ½ cup of sauce and 1/3 of the grated cheese.
11. Stack another four tortillas, top with the rest of the chicken, more sauce and another third of the cheese.
12. Finish with the third tortilla, topped with the remaining sauce and cheese.
13. Bake until the sauce has thickened and the cheese melted, about 20 minutes. Let rest for 5-10 minutes.
14. To serve, transfer each stack to a plate. Spoon any leftover sauce over the stacks and sprinkle with cilantro, if you wish. The stacks may also be cooked in individual gratin dishes.
My combination of peppers and chicken broth yielded enough sauce for two dishes. I made these with homemade corn tortillas the first night, with shredded chicken, and then with store-bought flour tortillas and shredded pork the second night. I think the corn tortillas had better texture and flavor, but the shredded pork was far tastier than the plain salt&pepper chicken.
I always use extra sharp white cheddar cheese for “your choice shredded cheese”.
I prefer to boil my meats and shred them, rather than grilling or pan frying. I also feel it’s helpful to season them with at *least* salt, pepper, and some sort of chili powder.
I chose to roll my enchiladas instead of stacking them. If you choose to roll your enchiladas, it’s very important to put sauce on the bottom of the pan, under your rolled enchiladas.
I found this recipe and my adjusted process to be really easy and convenient for me, and it tastes better than the recipe I had been using, so it’s definitely a keeper.