Chicken enchiladas verdes

Yield: 8 servings

Measure Ingredient
1 pounds Fresh poblano peppers (4 medium)
1 pounds Skinned, boneless cooked chicken, at room
Temperature or warm
½ cup Lightly packed cilantro leaves
Salt, to taste
1½ pounds Fresh tomatillos, husks removed and rinsed (OR drained and rinsed canned tomatillos)
2 cups Chicken stock, divided
1½ cup Vegetable oil, divided
12 Corn tortillas (6-inch diameter)
2 ounces Chihuahua or Muenster cheese, chilled
1 medium Tomato, peeled and seeded
½ cup Sour cream (about)

Char, peel and seed the poblano peppers and set them aside. Shred the chicken by pulling it apart with your fingers or by processing it with a medium (4-mm) food processor slicing disk. There should be 3 to 4 cups. Set aside.

To make the green salsa, mince the cilantro in a dry food processor fitted with the metal blade. Add the roasted poblano peppers and ¼ teaspoon of salt; process until minced. Add the tomatillos and process until the mixture is pureed, slowly adding 1 cup of the stock. Process until smooth.

Transfer the salsa to a nonreactive skillet large enough to hold a flat tortilla. Add 2 tablespoons of the oil and ¾ cup of the remaining stock. Simmer until the sauce thickens slightly, about 15 minutes. Adjust the seaonings, adding ¼ teaspoon of salt or more, as needed. Set the sauce aside in the skillet. (The sauce can be covered and refrigerated in a bowl for 48 hours.) Heat the remaining oil in a large, heavy skilet to 325F. Layer paper towels on a baking sheet with additional toweling nearby. To seal each tortilla, slip it into the hot oil for 15 to 20 seconds, turning it once. Use tongs to transfer the tortillas to the paper towels and blot to remove any excess oil. Repeat with the remaining tortillas.

Preheat the oven to 350 F and adjust the oven rack to the middle position. To assemble the casseerole, work on the tortillas one at a time as follows: warm the sauce and dip a sealed tortilla into the sauce, coating each side. Rest the tortillas in a 15-by-10-by-3-inch baking dish (use glass, porcelain, enamel, or earthenware, as the sauce is acidic). Put a generous half cup of the shredded chicken on each tortilla, roll it up, and put it seam-side down in the dish, starting aty one end. Place the rolled tortillas snugly side by side in the dish and work on top of the rolled tortillas as the dish fills up so that no sauce is lost.

Shred the cheese. Stir the remaining broth into the remaining sauce, and heat it simmering--the sauce will thicken slightly. Adjust the seasoning and spread all of the remaining sauce over the enchiladas (rolled tortillas). Sprinkle with the cheese. Cover the dish with aluminum foil. Bake until a sharp knife inserted into the enchiladas is withdrawn hot, about 18 to 20 minutes.

Coarsely chop the tomato. Serve the enchiladas by spooning them out of the baking dish. Garnish each portion with a generous spoonful of sour cream and some chopped tomato.

Makes 8 servings.

Nutrient Values per Serving: 458 Calories, 24 g Fat, 6 g Saturated Fat, 26 g Protein, 35 g Carbohydrate, 62 mg Cholesterol, 300 mg Sodium.

[THE WASHINGTON POST; November 28, 1990; Jane Freiman; "Dinner Party"] Submitted By LAWRENCE KELLIE On 01-12-95

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