Monday, May 4, 2009
Cinco De Mayo
Wikipedia says, Cinco De Mayo celebrates the Mexican army's unlikely victory over French forces at the Battle of Puebla on May 5, 1862.
The way I look at it, from a culinary point of view, it was a win win situation. French or Mexican? I can go either way(!). Lord knows I've drank enough wine and eaten enough cheese to kill a rat. But I must admit, as far as my taste buds are concerned, I'm having to side with the Mexicans on this one. For there are few things I crave more than fresh Fajitas, Chicken Enchilada's, Carne Asada, Tortilla Soup, Roasted Poblano sauce, Cotija cheese, Salsa, Avocado's, and of course, Margarita's. As a matter of fact, I enjoy cooking and eating Mexican food so much that once, I considered taking a cooking class to learn more about it, but my family revolted. No more Mexican food, they said. They were burnt-out.
So you can easily imagine my thrill and excitement to be granted a special day like today, a day designated solely to the cooking and eating of Mexican food.
This year I wanted to do something different, something authentic, something fun and exciting that I had seen Rick Bayless do on Mexico: One Plate At A Time. Like roast a bunch of peppers along with some skirt steak and chicken outside on the grill, and serve it up on homemade tortilla's. But a lack of time - and torrential rainfall - put a damper on that idea. So I went with hubby's suggestion and decided to make Easy Chicken Enchilada's instead.
I don't know if you have heard, but here in Oklahoma, it is monsoon season. It has rained so much, that we are beginning to mold.
Today, in between downpours, I hurried to the store to pick up provisions, including a bottle of Rick's Frontera Tomatillo Salsa with roasted Serrano and cilantro that goes perfectly with this dish. I don't normally tout products here, but this is a good timesaver. And the fact that Rick is from OKC is kinda cool.
This dish turned out so good that is was worth traipsing through the parking lot in the pouring rain while juggling a purse, an umbrella, and two flimsy shopping bags just as my cell phone began to ring, as I was trying to reach for my keys, when a giant burst of wind came, turning my umbrella inside out, ripping it in half, forcing me to step into a puddle, ruining one shoe. And by the time I got home, I looked like I had just lost the Battle of Puebla - and on my return home to France - been given a burial at sea. It was a soggy Cinco De Mayo.
Easy Chicken Enchilada's
In a large bowl, mix 3 or 4 cups cooked, shredded, chicken breasts; 2 small cans chopped green chili's, drained; 1 heaping cup shredded Monterey Jack Cheese; chopped jalapeno pepper; 1/2 cup chopped cilantro; salt, pepper; and 1/3 cup sour cream.
Fill flour tortilla's with this mixture and roll up into enchilada's and place in pan; spray tops of enchilada's with cooking spray - or brush with cooking oil - so they brown nicely. Bake in 350 degree oven for about 30 minutes or until golden brown.
Serve topped with an easy sauce made of 1 cup sour cream, and 1 cup green tomatillo salsa, mixed together.
Top with black olives, cilantro, pickled red onions, pico de gallo, and more cheese if you like.
This is by no means an authentic Mexican recipe, but it is quick and easy, and my family loves this simple sauce made of sour cream and tomatillo salsa. We enjoyed the meal so much that we almost forgot about the rain. Almost.