Friday, April 13, 2012

Chicken and Black Bean Enchiladas

I'm still working my way through the large pot of Mexican Style Black Beans that I cooked a few days ago.  I have always wanted to make homemade enchiladas so I thought this was a great time to do so.  I made my own enchilada sauce and and I'm pretty darn proud how it all turned out.  I admit that these enchiladas are probably not authentic Mexican by any means... but they sure were amazing and easier than I thought to make. My family gave me an all thumbs on this one and considering I used whole grain tortillas, lean chicken breast and black beans, I can feel very happy it was a nutritious dinner to serve them. I have now listed enchiladas as a family favorite and I can't wait to start experimenting more with them.

For the Filling:
Flour or whole grain tortillas ( I used whole grain)
1-2lbs of poached chicken breast from 3-5 chicken breast (depending on the size)
3-4 cups of chicken broth or water/bullion equivalent to poach the chicken breast
2-3 cups of prepared Mexican Style Black Beans
2-3 oz of cream cheese
1 tsp of cumin powder
1/2 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp of chili con carne powder

8oz bag of grated Mexican style cheese (I used a Mexican blend of cheddar and Monterrey jack)
Sour Cream as a topping (optional)

Enchilada Sauce:
4-5 cloves of fresh grated garlic
1Tbs of all purpose flour
1 Tbs of chili con carne powder
1 tsp of cumin powder
1 tsp of dried oregano
1/2 tsp of brown sugar (optional) 
2-3 cups of chicken broth or water/bullion equivalent left over from poaching chicken
8oz can of tomato sauce
red chili flakes to taste
salt and black pepper to taste
1 Tbs of oil

Step 1: Poach chicken
In a pan poach 3-5 pieces of boneless chicken breast in chicken broth or water/bullion for 20 minutes. I also included some red chilies into the broth that I will liquidize later and add to the enchilada sauce.  Once chicken is poached, remove from liquid and shred.   Then take chilies and chicken broth and liquidize until smooth. (If you do not add chilies you can skip the liquidizing step.

Step 2:  Enchilada Sauce
In a separate pan prepare the sauce. Saute garlic with garlic for 30-45 seconds on medium-high heat. Then add the flour, cumin, chili powder and oregano. Saute for another 30-45 seconds.

Add the liquidized chicken broth/chili mixture and can of tomato sauce. Cook for several minutes until sauce thickens slightly.  Taste for seasoning.  If the sauce is too acidic from the tomato sauce, add the brown sugar to balance out the flavors.
Step 3: Make filling and assemble
Now make the enchilada filling by mixing the shredded chicken with the prepared Mexican Style Black Beans , cream cheese, cumin, oregano and chili powder.  Taste for seasoning.  Put 4-5 Tbs of filling in each tortilla and roll like a cigar.  Layer 1/3 of the enchilada sauce in baking dish and then place the rolled enchiladas on top of sauce.
Pour the remaining enchilada sauce over the top of the rolled enchiladas and top with shredded cheese. Bake in a 400 degree oven for 20 minutes. Serve hot. Enjoy.

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