Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Deep Dish Chicken Enchiladas Montadas

Deep Dish Chicken Enchiladas Montadas

Enchiladas Montadas is a stacked variation of the popular rolled enchilada, served like a multi-layered, non-crispy tostada. My version just happens to be layered inside an individual serving size soufflé dish to keep all of the assembled ingredients bubbling together. A little bit like a pot pie.

Enchiladas are usually a soft corn tortilla wrapped around a filling – often consisting of pre-cooked and seasoned chicken, pork or beef simmered in a prepared sauce and covered with cheese. The preparation of this dish is simply a process of layering separately prepared foods with sauce covered with a blanket of cheese. You apply heat and allow all those separate ingredients to evolve into a whole new dish. Actually, a lot like a pot pie!

When you set one of these down in front of your dinner companion everyone gets a warm feeling all over! 

Deep Dish Chicken Enchiladas Montadas
Yield: 2 Servings     Preparation Time: 1½ Hours (including 1 hour refrigerator time)   
Cooking Time: 55 Minutes


For the Salsa Casera:
• 1½ Pounds ripe Tomatoes, chopped into ½” chunks reserving juice
• 1 Cup White Onion, diced
• 1 Serrano Pepper, seeded and minced (reserve the seeds)
• ½ Teaspoon Kosher Salt
• ½ Cup Fresh Cilantro, finely chopped

For the Enchilada Montadas:
• 2 Chipotle Peppers in Adobo Sauce, diced (see Tips and Trending below)
• 1 Tablespoon Adobo Sauce, from the Chipotle Peppers
• 3 Cloves + 1 Clove Garlic, minced
• 2 Teaspoons Chili Powder
• 1½ Teaspoons Ground Smoked Cumin
• 1 Cup Tomato Sauce
• 1 Teaspoon Granulated Sugar
• 1 Tablespoon Canola Oil
• 1 Pound Boneless & Skinless Chicken Breast, cubed
• 1½ Cups White Onion, diced
• Pinch of Kosher Salt
• 1 Teaspoon Dried Oregano
• ¼ Cup Homemade Chicken Stock or low-sodium store bought
• 12 Corn Tortillas (6”)
• ¾ Pound Monterey Jack Cheese, finely shredded (3 cups)
• 4 Scallions, sliced

Preparation Steps

Step 1. In a medium glass mixing bowl, combine the chopped Tomatoes and juice, 1 cup diced White Onion, the Serrano Pepper, ½ teaspoon of Kosher Salt and Cilantro. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 1 hour. After 30 minutes, taste the salsa and if a spicier version is desired, stir in the reserved seeds.

Step 2. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Step 3. Put a medium saucepan over medium-high heat and add 2 ½ cups of the Salsa prepared in Step 1, the Chipotle Peppers, Adobo Sauce, 3 cloves of the minced Garlic, Chili Powder, Cumin, Tomato Sauce and Sugar. Bring to a boil while stirring then reduce the heat and simmer for 15 minutes. Remove from heat and cover.

Step 4. While the sauce is cooking set a medium fry pan over medium-high heat. Add the Canola Oil and sauté the Chicken until browned and thoroughly cooked. Transfer the Chicken to a bowl and set aside.

Step 5. Add the remaining 1½ cups of Onions to the fry pan and season with a pinch of Kosher Salt. Reduce the heat to medium-low and sweat the Onions for 5 minutes. Stir in the remaining 1 clove of minced Garlic and the Oregano and cook for 2 minutes. Return the cooked Chicken back to the pan and add the Chicken Stock, scraping the bottom of the pan to deglaze. Remove from heat.

Step 6. Spray two 6” soufflé dishes with non-stick spray and layer the prepared ingredients in each dish as follows:

   Layer 1: Spread ¼ cup of the sauce (from step 3) on the bottom of the soufflé dish.
   Layer 2: Dip 2 Tortillas into the sauce in the saucepan and lay both on top of the sauce in the soufflé dish.
   Layer 3: ¼ cup Cheese
   Layer 4: One fourth of the Chicken mixture
   Layer 5: 1 tablespoon of sauce
   Layer 6: ¼ cup Cheese
   Layer 7: 1 sauce dipped Tortilla
   Layer 8: ¼ cup of sauce
   Layer 9: 1 sauce dipped Tortilla
   Layer 10: ¼ cup Cheese
   Layer 11: One fourth of the Chicken mixture
   Layer 12: 1 tablespoon of sauce
   Layer 13: ¼ cup Cheese
   Layer 14: 2 sauce dipped Tortillas
   Layer 15: ¼ cup of sauce
   Layer 16: ½ cup Cheese
   Layer 17: One half of the sliced Scallions

Step 7. Cover with aluminum foil and bake for 30 minutes then remove the foil and bake an additional 10 minutes. Let rest for 10 minutes before serving.

Serve with some crispy tortilla chips, a side of Refried Beans and some shredded lettuce drizzled with any remaining salsa casera, cheese and a little sour cream.

Tips and Trending

~ Chipotle peppers are jalapeño peppers that have been smoked. They are available dried in the produce department or packed in adobo sauce in the Mexican food aisle. For this recipe, you’ll want the variety packed in adobo sauce.

~ You may have noticed that in Step 1, you used the first 5 ingredients to make salsa casera (homemade salsa). Yep, you did it. And it was easy!  Now then, here’s something I rarely recommend - if you don’t have 1¼ hours to make the salsa, buy it, but homemade always tastes better than store bought! 

~ If you have any leftover tortillas after assembling the dish, cut them into wedges, spread them in a single layer on a baking sheet and sprinkle them lightly with salt. When the dishes come out of the oven for their 10 minute rest period, turn the heat up to 400ºF and bake the tortilla “chips” for 8 to 10 minutes.

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