My dad was raised in Phoenix, Arizona, so he knows his way around Mexican food. The one thing that he will complain about in the huge international smorgasbord that is the Houston restaurant scene is the distinct lack of "REAL Mexican food", just a lot of TexMex. Nothing wrong with TexMex, but compared to the stuff in Arizona, it's a little... unbalanced. So when he said that my enchiladas were the best he had ever tasted, I took that as the true compliment it was. This is easy but time consuming, real cooking times are explained in the recipe. You can cook the using a skillet or a crock pot. You could even use leftover chicken by skipping to the rolling - but I would season the chicken with 1/2 cup stock and a quarter of the spices listed.
- 1⁄4 cup vegetable oil
- 4 tablespoons chili powder (RZ is making me misspell it, I mean dried and ground ancho, chipotle, or cayenne)
- 2 tablespoons garlic powder
- 1 tablespoon ground cumin
- 2 lbs boneless skinless chicken
- 2 cups chicken stock (optional)
- 1 (16 ounce) jar enchilada sauce
- 24 flour tortillas (no, not corn!)
- 2 cups shredded cheddar cheese (whatever you prefer) or 2 cups colby-monterey jack cheese (whatever you prefer) or 2 cups monterey jack cheese (whatever you prefer)
- Add oil and spices to a large one gallon bag. Mix thoroughly. Add chicken. Squoosh around to coat the chicken evenly. Yup, technical term, "squoosh". If you can, stick this in the fridge overnight. If not, don't sweat over it.
- At this point you can freeze the meat, add the packages of tortillas, and have an OAMC meal. Simply defrost everything later and assemble. Do not assemble this and then freeze, flour tortillas do not freeze well in the presence of liquid.
- Now, you can dump the spiced chicken in the crockpot for 6 hours on low. Or you can brown the chicken in a big skillet on medium high heat - 4-5 minutes each side, then add chicken stock and simmer about 20 minutes until the chicken about falls apart.
- Remove chicken from cooking vessel to a large bowl. Reserve 1/2 cup of the cooking liquid. Shred the chicken using two forks or your hands (or just look at it hard if you used your crockpot). Add the reserved cooking liquid and stir to combine.
- Preheat oven to 350°F Prep a 9x13-inch baking dish by pouring 1/2 cup enchilada sauce in the bottom and "Rolling" it around the bottom to evenly coat.
- Spoon about 1/4 cup of the chicken onto the bottom third of a tortilla, roll tight, and place in the pan, seam side down. Continue until you have filled the dish or run out of chicken. Pour on the rest of the enchilada sauce, and sprinkle on the cheese.
- Bake at 350°F for about 20 minutes, or until the cheese is all melted and the sauce is bubbly and thick.
- Real Cook times: 20 to 30 minutes of work time (how fast can you roll them?); 6 hours cooking (if you use a crock pot) or 30 minutes cooking (if you use the stovetop); and 20 minutes in the oven.