We were supposed to have gone to a birthday party last night. Everyone invited was to bring a dinner dish to share so I decided to make red chicken enchiladas. Long story short, we didn’t go to the party and we kept this for ourselves instead..hehehe. This recipe isn’t difficult but it does take some time to make. If you have access to canned enchilada sauce then that’s your option to use and it will take even less time. However, I urge you to do this from scratch..the flavors beg you to do this! Normally enchiladas are made with corn tortillas and they are first lightly fried and then dipped into the sauce before being filled and served. But I made this as a casserole dish using white flour tortillas instead. I didn’t have enough left of the whole wheat tortillas I made recently and as this was for a party, I thought it easier to just purchase some.
The filling is very easy to make as well. These aren’t the most calorie friendly because of the amount of ingredients used, however for a hearty, comfort food type meal it’s quite reasonable. Each enchilada is about 230 calories and this entire dish makes 12 generous portions. I made them without the chili powder because my husband can’t eat spicy at all. But if you can, add as much chili as you can handle..these are called enchiladas for a reason! So, let’s get started!
RED SAUCE – Ingredients
- 500-800 ml chicken broth (use liquid left from cooking chicken)
- 500 ml tomato puree
- 2 tbsp vegetable oil
- 2 tbsp white flour
- 2-4 tbsp chili powder (optional)
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 1 tsp oregano
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp cumin
- 1/2 tsp ground pepper
TIP: If you have left over sauce, preserve in a jar in the fridge. You can drizzle this on eggs or meats for example.
FILLING – Ingredients
- 500 g chicken breast
- 1 medium to large carrot
- 1 small onion
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 garlic clove
- 1/2 chicken bouillon cube
- 12 medium flour tortillas
- 1 medium onion
- 80 g feta cheese (or other crumbly fresh cheese)
- 90 g shredded cheese of your choice
- Sour cream
- Start by washing the chicken breasts. Place them in a large pot, quarter the carrot and onion, crush the garlic clove and add to the chicken. Throw in the bay leaves and the bouillon and fill with cold water until it covers the chicken. Bring to a boil and simmer for 20-30 minutes until the chicken is cooked through. Once done, use a fork to take the chicken and carrot pieces out of the pot and place aside to cool. Keep the chicken broth left over for the sauce!
- In a medium sauce pan heat the vegetable oil and begin by adding the flour. Stir quickly to make a paste. Do not allow to burn or stick to the pot. Lower the heat if necessary. Add the chili powder (if you are using it) and continue to stir together to create this paste for about a minute. Add the rest of the spices and continue to form this paste. Quickly add the chicken broth and whisk together so it doesn’t form lumps. Add the tomato puree and combine well. Bring to a boil and simmer whisking until the sauce thickens and it is at a good consistency. Add more chicken broth if you feel it is too thick. Season with more pepper or salt if it needs it. Take it from the fire, cover and place aside while you prepare the filling.
- By now the chicken should be cool to the touch. Start by chopping the cooked carrot into small pieces and put into a medium bowl. Chop the onion and do the same. Shred the chicken by hand so you get that stringy look. You can also chop it with a knife but you wont get the same bulky consistency as you would if you shred the meat. Crumble the feta cheese over it, season with salt and pepper and mix well. Preheat your oven to 200°C (400°F).
- Prepare your oven dish. Use a non stick olive oil spray or whatever you have available. Prepare your area as this step usually goes very quickly. Heat a non stick skillet over medium heat and begin to heat two tortillas at a time. Once heated and pliable remove them quickly and fill with the chicken mixture. Be gentle and don’t roll them too tightly and begin placing them on your oven dish with the opening side down. Continue doing this until you fill all the tortillas. If you don’t need this dish for several hours you can cover and refrigerate now until you are ready to bake it. If not, continue on!
- Pour the sauce on top of the filled tortillas and coat them all well. Shake the dish around a bit so the sauce reaches all around them. Sprinkle with the shredded cheese, cover with aluminum foil and place in the oven for 45 minutes. Serve hot with a dollop of sour cream and a salad on the side. Enjoy!