Sunday, May 29, 2011

Chicken Tamale Casserole


My wife is hosting a Dining for Women event tonight, so I'll end up having leftovers of this tonight, but I've had it before and it's always a hit.

Prep time is next to nothing so this is a prefect go to weekday meal. My daughter usually eats it up.

Chicken Tamale Casserole (based on this)

1 (8.5-ounce) box corn muffin mix
1 cup shredded 4-cheese Mexican blend cheese, divided
1/3 cup milk
1 egg
1 tsp ground cumin
1 (14.75 oz) can cream-style corn
1 (4-ounce) can chopped green chiles, drained (or 2 green chiles, roasted and diced fine)
Cooking spray
1 (10-ounce) can red enchilada sauce
12-14 oz shredded cooked chicken breast or thigh
1/2 cup sour cream (to serve)

==

Preheat your oven to 400 degrees.

Start by making the cornbread base. 

Mix together the corn muffin mix, 1/4 cup of cheese, the milk, egg, cumin and cream-style corn.


Toss in a can of green chiles. But if you're like me and think that roasted green chiles are far superior, go ahead and roast and dice these beautiful chiles up and toss them in.


Mmm. Green chiles.
Pour the mixture into a 9x13 baking dish and toss it in the oven for 15-20 minutes. 


It will never set perfectly (tooth pick inserted clean), but it'll be pretty well done. I've baked it until it's completely set and it ends up being really dry. It's ok to be slightly tacky in the middle. 


Pierce the whole thing liberally with a fork and pour the can of enchilada sauce over the top. I usually buy the cheapest canned products possible, but for this, go with Old El Paso or other name brand. It makes a difference. 


Now the chicken. You can use any cooked chicken you have. I used 2 boneless, skinless thighs and one breast. I like that combination. 

I also marinated my chicken in some tequila, lime juice, oregano, cumin, chili powder and regular salsa overnight, then baked, then shredded. This is totally optional, but I think it ended up tasting pretty good.


Arrange the chicken evenly over top of the cornbread/sauce base.


Add the rest of the cheese.


Bake for 15 minutes or until the cheese has melted and the casserole is bubbly.


Serve with some sour cream. 


Enjoy!

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