2 garlic cloves, peeled
1 to 2 jalapeno chiles, steemed and cut into quarters
1 28oz-jar diced tomatoes in juice (preferably fire-roasted)
1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil, plus some for the tortillas
2 cups chicken or vegetable broth
12 corn tortillas
1 ½ cups (about 8 ounces) coarsely shredded cooked chicken, beef, or pork
¼ cup Mexican crema, sour cream, or crème fraîche, thinned with about 1 tablespoon milk
½ medium white onion, thinly sliced
½ cup (loosely packed) chopped cilantro (or flat-leaf parsley)
¼ cup grated Mexican queso añejo or other garnishing cheese such as Romano or Parmesan
This is a version of the original Mexican enchilada as it was before that concept grew into an overstuffed tortilla smothered in melted cheese. This market-stall favorite is a plain-Jane (unfilled) tortilla awash in Mexico’s iconic roasted tomato sauce with a little drizzle of rich crema, a sprinkling of aged cheese and a few slivers of bitey white onion—just right for small meals or when you’re looking for the perfect accompaniment to simple grilled chicken, fish, shrimp, or scallops.
–Beth Blessing, Green BEAN Delivery
Turn on the oven to 350 degrees. With a food processor or blender running, drop in the garlic and chiles one piece at a time, letting each piece get finely chopped before adding the next. Drain the tomatoes, reserving their juice. Add the tomatoes and process until smooth.
Heat the oil in a medium (3-quart) saucepan over medium-high. Add the puree and cook, stirring nearly constantly, until the mixture has reduced to the consistency of thick tomato sauce, about 7 minutes. Add the broth and reserved tomato juice and simmer over medium-low for 10 minutes to blend the flavors.
While the sauce is simmering, lay out the tortillas on a baking sheet and spray or brush lightly on both sides with oil, then stack them in twos. Slide the tortillas into the oven and bake just long enough to make them soft and pliable, about 3 minutes. Remove from the oven and stack them in a single pile; cover with a kitchen towel to keep warm.
Taste and season the sauce with salt, usually about 1 teaspoon. Holding a warm tortilla by one edge, dip most of it into the hot sauce, then lay it on a deep dinner plate and fold it in quarters. (Having the plates warm will ensure a warm dinner.) Do the same with 2 more tortillas, slightly overlapping them on the plate. Ladle a generous ¼ cup of hot sauce (bring it back to a boil if it has cooled down) over the tortillas, letting it pool over and around them. Strew with the meat, then drizzle with cream and sprinkle with onion, cilantro, and cheese. Prepare the remaining servings in the same way, and serve without hesitation.
Recipe by: Mexican Everyday by Rick Bayless. W.W. Norton & Company, 2005.