Chicken Enchiladas Remade!

So I have been wanting to make enchiladas for some time now.  My hubby works long hours during tax season & I am always on the lookout for something that makes extras and either keeps or freezes well.   Hubby pillages the fridge for his lunch & dinner away from home, and the cycle continues.

I went searching for a chicken enchilada recipe with a few criteria:

1. I have all the ingredients.  I live 50 minutes away from the nearest grocery store, so I wasn’t planning on going shopping. 

2. It not be spicy.  My mother never spiced anything due to my father’s food preferences, so I was unable to even handle black pepper before meeting my husband.  Shocking, I know.  He has been slowly introducing me to new flavors and spices.  I have especially developed a taste for Old Bay seasoning on my fries and Indian food.  Keep in mind, I’m still on the mild setting but I am working my way up!  Kudos to Mary here for giving me straight wasabi to try.  I’m pretty sure I lost about 1/3 of my taste buds that day.  Glad it was entertaining.

Moving on!

I found a recipe that I liked and it didn’t use enchiladas sauce (gasp!) because I didn’t have any! 

I decided to ignore my instincts and follow the recipe.  I know, when you start cooking, they tell you to follow everything.  Well, I’ve never done that, & I’m told my stuff usually comes out better if I do what I think should be done to enhance a dish.  All in all, I really liked this recipe.  I got that lovely authentic flavor without having to buy the more enchilada specific ingredients.  Best of all, my husband adored it!  I got a special email message that day telling me he really liked the dish and that I should keep the recipe for later. 

What happened to the original recipe?  Did she follow it exactly?  Tune in after commercials to find out!

So I am following the recipe until I get to the part about the water.  At this point, with the addition of the tomato sauce, I’ve got a really loose sauce.  I was already wondering why we were using tomato sauce instead of salsa.  I believe salsa would add the required tomato flavor and help tighten.  However, I went ahead and added the water.  I ended up with chicken soup.  I brought it up to a boil to try and reduce some of the water.  In the end, I had to use a slotted spoon to scoop my chicken mixture into my taco shells and I had lots leftover.

However, there was a bright spot the leftover sauce was really yummy and it tightened as it cooled due to the sour cream.  I served it over the rice side (in reality, chicken Rice-a-Roni) and it turned out as that extra thing the rice needed to fit in.

Now, onto the changes!

What would I do differently next time? 

(1) I would perhaps substitute half of the tomato sauce for salsa, if not omit it entirely.

(2) I used fat-free sour cream, because I try to make things healthier anyway I can without sacrificing taste.

(3) I didn’t have chili powder!  I know, this might seem a sin to some, but my husband uses it so much that we were out, and I hadn’t had a chance to run to the Amish store to buy my spices in bulk.  So I ended up adding a bunch of taco seasoning!  Worked out great!  I think I got a better flavor.

(4)  I ended up adding about 1/4 cup salsa to the chicken tomato sauce mixture because I wanted that flavor in there.

Side Note:  I have  a pet peeve involving spices bought at supermarkets.  They are so expensive!  So, I happen to be fortunate to live in an area with a large Amish population, and have an Amish store not even a mile from where I live.   Many Amish populations tend to result in fruit stands and random stores selling treasures to behold!  I can’t buy fresh groceries much unless it is summer, but I can buy baking staples and spices for a really good price.  This is where I buy, for example, 2 pounds of Red Star Yeast for $6.50, 1 oz. of Bay Leaves for 35 cents, 4 oz of ginger for 1.95. etc.  You get the idea.  Some is not that good in price, but most of it seems to be good comparatively.  And 1 oz of Bay Leaves might not sound like much, but think something liked >30 dried leaves per container. 

Funny Note: One day, I was muttering about the prices while at the store, and this little old lady asked me if I knew of a cheaper place.  I told her I tend to get mine cheaper at the Amish store, and she asked me if that was a chain.  Okay, end of rant!

(5)  I also used a cheddar cheese mixture, all of which was low-fat.  I also used an a larger amount of cheese on top of the enchiladas than 3/4 cup.  Just seemed like it needed more.  Ended up being more like 1.5 cups of cheese.

 

In the end, do what you think tastes good!

The original recipe I found is as follows:

Chicken Enchiladas from AllRecipes

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