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Chicken Enchiladas

February is finally over; the longest shortest month of the year. Still, the weather forecast predicts more snow, more cold, more wind. March is a slog to get to on the way to dear spring. I need something spicy and warm to cure my endless-winter doldrums. Enter the enchilada.

Full of smoky heat from the chipotle chilies in adobo sauce, brightened with the mellow green chilies, packed to the brim with chicken, corn, tomatoes and smothered with cheese, the enchilada is a comfort food favorite. I have often made this with leftover rotisserie chicken if you’d like to skip a step and get to feasting that much sooner. 

I eat my enchiladas with a generous amount of sour cream, fresh scallions and generous slices of avocado; feel free to garnish with your very favorite Mexican accompaniment and enjoy!

3 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 1/2 pounds skinless boneless chicken breasts
salt and pepper
2 teaspoons cumin powder
2 teaspoons coriander, ground
1/2 teaspoon onion powder
1/2 teaspoon paprika
2 teaspoons garlic powder
1 teaspoon chili powder
1 red onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 cup frozen corn
6 ounce can of chopped green chilies, drained
7 ounce can of chipotle chili peppers in adobo sauce, chopped
28 ounce can stewed tomatoes
1 teaspoon flour
16 corn tortillas
1 1/2 cup enchilada sauce, canned
1 cup shredded Cheddar and Jack cheeses

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. In a large skillet over medium high heat, add the vegetable oil. Season the chicken with salt and pepper; brown the chicken for 7 minutes on each side. Remove the chicken to a plate to cool.

Saute the onion and garlic in the pan until translucent. Add the corn and chilies and stir well to combine. Add the spices and cook for a minute until fragrant. Add the stewed tomatoes and simmer for a minute.

 Shred the cooked chicken into strips. Add the chicken and flour into the tomato mixture and stir to combine thoroughly. 

Soften the tortillas according to package instructions to make them pliable. Ladle a spoonful of enchilada sauce into 2 9 by 13 inch pans. Dip each tortilla into the enchilada sauce to coat. Place about a quarter cup of the chicken tomato mixture into each tortilla; roll and place into the pan seam side down. Each pan gets 8 tortillas. Top with the remaining enchilada sauce and cheeses.

Bake for 15 minutes until the cheese melts and begins to brown. Serve with sour cream, avocado slices, guacamole, diced tomatoes, snipped scallions- and enjoy!


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