Chicken and Swiss Chard Enchilada Casserole
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 2 garlic cloves, or to taste, minced
- 1 pound Swiss chard, rinsed well, drained, stems and leaves separated and chopped
- 1/4 cup water
- 1 large whole chicken breast (about 1 1/2 pounds), cooked, boned, and shredded (about 1 1/4 cups meat)
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- Vegetable oil, for frying the tortillas
- 12 (7-inch) corn tortillas, dried at room temperature for 30 minutes, or until they are leathery and curled but not crisp
- 2 1/2 cups Mexican-style tomato sauce, recipe follows
- 1/2 cup chicken broth
- 1 1/2 cups grated Monterey Jack (about 6 ounces)
- 1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan
- Mexican-Style Tomato Sauce:
- 1 (35-ounce) can plum tomatoes, drained
- 1 onion, chopped coarsely
- 2 garlic cloves, chopped coarsely
- 2 fresh or pickled jalapeno chiles, or to taste, seeded and minced (wear rubber gloves)
- 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
In a large skillet, cook the garlic in the oil over moderate heat, stirring, until it is fragrant, stir in the Swiss chard stems and 1/4 cup water, and cook the mixture, covered, for 5 minutes. Add the leaves and cook the mixture, covered, stirring occasionally, for 3 to 5 minutes, or until the leaves are tender. Drain the Swiss chard mixture in a bowl toss it with the shredded chicken and salt and pepper, to taste.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
In a skillet, heat 1/4 inch of the oil over moderately high heat until it is hot but not smoking. In it, fry the tortillas, 1 at a time, turning them, 3 to 4 seconds, or until they are softened, and transfer them with tongs as they are fried to paper towels to drain.
In a bowl, thin the tomato sauce with the broth, spoon about 1/3 cup of it into the bottom of a greased 13 by 9-inch baking dish, and arrange 4 of the tortillas in one layer over it. Spread the tortillas with half the chicken mixture and half the Monterey Jack, spoon about 1/2 cup of the remaining sauce over the mixture, and cover it with 4 of the remaining tortillas in one layer. Spread the tortillas with the remaining chicken mixture and the remaining Monterey Jack, top the mixture with 1/2 cup of the remaining sauce, and cover it with the remaining 4 tortillas. Pour the remaining sauce evenly over the tortillas and sprinkle it with the Parmesan.Mexican-Style Tomato Sauce:
In a large skillet, heat the oil over moderately high heat until it is hot but not smoking, add the tomato puree, and cook the mixture, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes.
Season the sauce with salt and black pepper.
Yield: 2 1/2 cups
Recipe courtesy of Gourmet Magazine