Mostly anything on a Mexican menu, I am totally up for it! I have long since been a fan of Mexican food, but who isn’t these days. Being a Filipino, our heritage lends much Spanish/Latin flavour in both our culture and in our palettes. Although we’re not real beaners, quite a number of Mexican dishes are comfortably familiar to us.
For as long as I can remember, I have always been quite fond of cooking Mexican food whenever I’m entertaining at home. I think that even dates as far back when I was 19 years old. I’ve gotten better with it over the years and perfected quite a good array of dishes . Definitely, Mexican would be right down my alley. My bestie happens to be a Latina who comes from San Diego, and who else would have better authority to compliment my Mejican cooking skills other than my very dear Panama!
What I love most about Mexican food is the texture of fresh , crisp and juicy vegetables/ fruit married with the distinctive flavour of cumin and cilantro. This totally takes me all the way to Mariachi and Margarita heaven. A plate of your favourite Mexican dish never fails to burst with color! Always festive and mouth watering on sight! Their dishes are very easy and simple to prepare, but always leaves you with a satiated palette and a beaming smile of contentment. No wonder Mexican culture is so alive, vibrant and sizzling spicy. It just makes you want to roll your R’s like “rrrrrrrrawr!”.
Chicken Enchilada is my fave Mexican fare and whenever I happen to bump into a Mexican joint, I always have to try their chicken enchilada. I also like tostadas but I must say that this dish is quite close to my heart. I don’t often make it, but when I do, it means I’m making it for a special occasion or a special person.
It would be 3 years now since I first met my top Latina gal. With the circumstances that surrounded the beginnings of our friendship, I can say that I have been very blessed to have found her in this lifetime. I was about to turn 40 when I met her along with a few other great party souls. And to this day, I still ponder on the odds that allowed us to cross each other’s paths. I am one lucky gal to have found such an awesome set of friends I have long whispered in my prayers to find and bring color back in my life. Who knew that my 40th would be the turning point in my dreary pathetic social life. She hosted my 40th and I thank my Chicken Enchiladas for hitting the right spot. And so the saying holds so much truth, for life indeed began when I turned 40!
Jalapeno Chicken Enchilada Verde
3 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
salt and ground black pepper to taste
2 tablespoons butter
1 large onion, minced
2 jalapeno peppers, seeded and minced (wear gloves)
1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 tablespoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon chili powder
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1 (28 ounce) can green enchilada sauce
7 flour tortillas
8 ounces shredded Monterey Jack cheese, divided
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
2. Season chicken breasts with 1 teaspoon of cayenne pepper, 1/2 teaspoon of garlic powder, salt, and black pepper. Place into a baking dish.
3. Bake in the preheated oven until the chicken is no longer pink inside and the juices run clear, about 45 minutes. Allow chicken to cool, and shred with 2 forks. Set chicken aside.
4. Heat butter in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat, and cook the onion and jalapenos until the onion is translucent, about 5 minutes; stir in the cream cheese in chunks, and allow cream cheese to melt and soften. Stir the cream cheese into the vegetables, and mix in 1/2 teaspoon of cayenne pepper, 1 tablespoon of garlic powder, the paprika, chili powder, and cumin. Mix in the cooked chicken meat; remove from heat.
5. Pour half the green enchilada sauce into the bottom of a 9×13-inch baking dish. Lay tortillas out onto a work surface, and place chicken mixture in a line down the center of each tortilla; sprinkle with about 1 tablespoon of Monterey Jack cheese per tortilla. Roll up the tortillas, and place into the sauce in the dish, seam sides down; pour the remaining sauce over the enchiladas. Sprinkle remaining 4 ounces of Monterey Jack cheese over the top.
6. Bake in the preheated oven until the filling is hot and bubbling and the cheese has melted, 30 to 35 minutes. Serve with Mexican rice and a salad.
Photo Credit: Tacos Por ViDA
Photo Credit: calebcherry
Photo Credit: mdid