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Chicken Enchiladas with Pasilla Chili Sauce
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    Chicken Enchiladas with Pasilla Chili Sauce

    I have prepared this dish a few times with different types of dried peppers and have never been disappointed.
    Its a bit of work, but with a worthwhile end result.

  • 2 tablespoons peanut oil
  • 2 ounces dried pasilla chilies, seeded, torn into 1" pieces
  • 1/2 cup blanched almonds, chopped
  • 4 chicken breasts, halves
  • 6 cups chicken stock
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 4 plum tomatoes, cored, quartered
  • 1/2 onion, quartered
  • 4 cloves garlic, peeled
  • 2 tablespoons firmly packed brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon coarse salt
  • peanut oil, (for deep frying)
  • 16 corn tortillas
  • 2 1/2 cups grated Monterey Jack cheese
  • 1 cup chopped onions
  • 1 cup creme fraiche
  • 1 avocado , peeled, seeded,sliced
  • fresh cilantro
  • Heat 2 tablespoons oil in large pot over high heat. Add chilies and almonds. Saute until chilies darken and almonds are golden, about 2 minutes. Using slotted spoon, transfer chilies and almonds to bowl. Reduce heat to medium. Season chicken with salt and pepper. Add to same pot and brown on all sides, about 5 minutes. Add stock; simmer until chicken is cooked through, about 20 minutes. Transfer chicken to another bowl using slotted spoon; cool. Reserve stock in pot. Toast cumin seeds in heavy small skillet over medium-low heat until aromatic, about 1 minute. Mince cumin seeds. Add cumin, chili mixture, tomatoes, quartered onion, garlic, sugar and salt to stock. Simmer until all ingredients are very soft, about 45 minutes.

    Working in batches, puree stock mixture in blender. Return to pot. Boil until reduced to 4 cups, stirring occasionally, about 20 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. (Can be made 1 day ahead. Chill chicken and sauce separately.)

    Remove skin from chicken and discard. Cut meat from bones and shred. Transfer to bowl and combine with 1/2 cup sauce. Set filling aside.

    Oil two 13x9-inch glass baking dishes. Pour oil into deep skillet to depth of 1/2 inch and heat to 375 degrees. Fry tortillas 1 at a time until softened, about 5 seconds per side. Using metal spatula, transfer to paper towels. Spread 1 tablespoon sauce over each tortilla. Sprinkle each with 2 tablespoons cheese and 1 tablespoon chopped onion. Place 1/3 cup chicken down center of each tortilla; roll up. Place seam side down in baking dishes. (Can be made 1 hour ahead. Cover.)

    Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Pour remaining sauce over enchiladas. Sprinkle with remaining cheese. Bake until heated through, about 20 minutes. Top with creme fraiche, avocado, and cilantro.
    serves 8

    From: Bon Appetit (4/93)
    Posted By: Suzanne
    Post Date: Tue, 03 Mar 1998



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