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Authentic Enchiladas

Category: Dinner
Source: Kristen J. Gough
Ingredients: Red Chili Sauce Ingredients:
10 dried ancho chiles (or you can use a combination of chiles)
2 garlic cloves, minced (or 1/4 to 1/2 Tbsp. garlic powder)
1 1/2 cup chicken broth (or water)
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. cumin
3 tomatoes (or one 14.5 oz. can diced tomatoes, drained)
1/4 cup chopped onion
Optional: one fresh Serrano chili (seeded and diced; add 1 or 2 if you want the sauce hot); ¼ cup minced cilantro

Other ingredients:
18 corn tortillas
1 rotisserie chicken, shredded
2 cups mozzarella or Monterrey Jack cheese
Sour cream
Oil for frying
Directions: 1. Prep the dried chiles. On a medium-high heat skillet, toast the chiles until the skins start to look softer and slightly cooked (around 4 minutes, rotating the chile as it heats). Immediately place the chiles into a large bowl of hot water. Prepare the other sauce ingredients while the chiles soften.

2. In a blender, combine the tomatoes, onion, garlic, salt, chicken broth, cumin and optional ingredients.

3. Remove the chiles from the water. Carefully cut around the tops of the chiles and remove as much of the seeds as possible. Add the chile skins to the other blended ingredients. Blend again. (The sauce should be slightly thick and smooth, not chunky. You may need to add more water or chicken broth.)

4. At this point, you can either cook the enchilada sauce in a crockpot or you can cook it on the stovetop. I often triple this recipe and then put it in the Crock-Po to cook the sauce then once it's cooled I store small Ziploc baggies of the sauce in the freezer for months of use.

5. To prepare the sauce for immediate use, add 1 Tbsp. vegetable oil to the bottom of a heavy saucepan. Bring the oil to medium-high heat and then add the sauce. Warning: The sauce may splatter and it stains – so wear your apron!

6. Simmer the sauce for about 30 minutes before preparing the rest of the meal.

7. Enchilada assembly! In a small saucepan, bring about 1 cup vegetable oil to medium high heat (a piece of bread should immediately begin to sizzle and rise to the top when you place it in the oil). As an alternative to frying, you can toast the tortillas on a hot cooking surface and then keep them warm by covering them with a kitchen towel.

8. Assemble your enchilada making station. Have two bowls ready: 1 with shredded chicken and the other with shredded cheese. Also, have 1 "messy plate" where you'll assemble the enchiladas and then drag them onto the serving plates.

9. Get your long-handled tongs ready! Place 1 tortilla into the hot oil. Let the tortilla cook just until it starts to barely harden. Immediately submerge the hot tortilla into the red sauce then back onto your messy plate. Put about 1 1/2 Tbsp. chicken and 1 Tbsp. cheese into each tortilla. I prepare one person's serving of enchiladas at a time. In other words, I'll prepare 1, 2, then 3 tortillas together on my messy plate, then gently push them onto a serving plate. Three enchiladas make for one adult serving; kids usually eat two.

10. Once all the serving plates are assembled: Reheat each individual dish for about 45 seconds in the microwave. Top with an extra scoop of sauce, cheese and then sour cream. To make the enchiladas look extra special, I scoop the sour cream into a Ziploc bag, then cut a small hole in one corner. Then I top the enchiladas with swirls of sour cream. Yummy!

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