Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Avocado Cream Enchiladas


This is kind of a riff on Enchiladas Suizas but with avocado instead of tons and tons of cheese to lend the richness.

This is a pretty quick recipe to put together and yields very good results. The filling is nice and creamy and hits that comfort food spot and the kids love it.

Avocado Cream Enchiladas
(from here)

Avocado Cream:
2 cups heavy cream (can sub half and half, but I wouldn't use milk)
1 cup chicken broth
2 avocados
1 cup fresh cilantro, unpacked
1 teaspoon cumin
2 cloves of garlic
Juice of one lime
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt, or more to taste

Chicken Filling:
1 tablespoon oil/butter
1/2 onion, diced
4 oz can diced Fire Roasted Hatch Chiles
1/2 teaspoon chili powder
1/2 teaspoon cumin
4 cups cooked, skinned & shredded chicken meat (about 1 store-bought rotisserie chicken or 1.5 pounds of uncooked chicken - using a combination of thighs and breast is nice!)
salt and pepper to taste

To Finish:
1/2 to 1 cup shredded Mexican blend cheese, to taste
8-10 medium flour tortillas

==

Pour 2 cups of cream into a blender.


Add 1 cup of chicken stock (or whatever stock).

I keep mine frozen in 1 cup ziplock baggies in the freezer. Super convenient.



Add a cup of unpacked cilantro.



Add 2 avocados.



Finally, add 1 teaspoon cumin, 2 cloves of garlic, juice of one lime and 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt. You can always add more salt after the fact.



Blend, blend, blend!

I like to get it as smooth as possible. 1-2 full minutes.



So, it looks like about 4 1/2 cups of sauce.


==

For the filling, add a tablespoon of oil along with 1/2 an onion to a skillet and season with salt and pepper over medium heat.


Season with 1/2 teaspoon chili powder and 1/2 teaspoon cumin and sauté for 5-7 minutes or until very tender.


Add the can of green chiles.


Stir well and let the flavors combine, 5 minutes - then kill the heat.


I used a pound and a half of uncooked chicken for the filling. I always use a combination of thighs and breast so you get the best of both worlds - good looking chicken that isn't too dry.

Just grill or pan fry the chicken with salt and pepper until done. Nothing fancy here since it's going to be drowned in avocado cream sauce.

I like to dice it in fairly bite-sized chunks. I don't really like shredded chicken because it tends to turn into a paste when mixed. The chunks retain their form much better.


Add the onion/chile mixture to the chicken in a bowl.


Stir to combine.


Add HALF of the avocado cream to the filling.


Stir to combine.


Creamy.


Place 1/4 cup of the remaining filling to the bottom of a 9x13 baking dish.


Spread it out. This helps prevent sticking.


I used flour tortillas but you can use corn if you want. Just adjust the filling amount since they tend to be smaller.


I used 1/3 of a cup for each of mine.


Just roll them up.


Place in the dish.


Repeat for all of your filling.


Pour the remaining avocado cream sauce over top.



Spread as evenly as you can.


Top with about a cup of cheese. No need to over-load here. There's plenty of richness in the sauce.


Cover and bake for 20 minutes at 350F.


Uncover and bake for 10 more minutes at 350F.


==

These enchiladas ended up being really good. The sauce was a great alternative to a heavy, cheese/fat laden sauce as the avocados lend body and healthier fat to the equation.

The filling was great in that it was rich, flavorful and easy to eat. The texture was nice being diced and each bite was texturally well balanced.

The simple flavor of the chicken stood up well to the rich and slightly tart avocado cream sauce. All in all this was a great plate of food. Serve with a simple salad of shredded lettuce with sliced tomatoes and/or beans and rice. Very versatile and very comforting. Great dish. Give it a try!


Enjoy!

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