Friday, May 10, 2024

Tex-Mex Anyone?

Tex Mex food is great, and I enjoy eating out at Mexican Restaurants as much as the next gringo, but cooking the stuff at home is nice too. 

I have no idea how many Mexican restaurants I have dined in over the years. Several of them have left lasting fond impressions on me and a very few others, not so much. 

I distinctly remember my first Taco, over 50 years back, I had it on the second day of a three-day pass from the Army base at Ft Lewis, WA. The place was a Taco stand in a food court under/beside the Space Needle in Seattle. One bite and I was running in circles shouting, "where have you been all of my life?" I think that was the first real TexMex I ever had and even today, I can close my eyes and remember how good that first taco was.

I have two stories, maybe three, that I will not share, out of respect for those of you who never had a bad experience at a Mexican Restaurant. However, they didn't hinder my love for the cuisine, especially when I think about chicken enchiladas.

Here is how I make them at home. Actually, this is how I make a full #36 Chicken Enchilada platter, which includes Spanish rice and Refried Beans. 


For Spanish Rice:

1/2 cup Rice We eat Basmati at our house.
3/4 cup Chicken Broth
1/2 can Tomato Sauce
3 Tablespoons Green Bell Pepper, diced
1 green onion, sliced
1 Tablespoon Jalapeño pepper, diced
3 Tablespoons Onion, diced 
1 teaspoon Adobo Seasoning
A Tablespoon of Picante Sauce if you have any

Add the peppers and onions to a microwave dish. I cook all rice in the microwave, and this is a one dish item.

Add the rice and green onions

Add Tomato sauce, sometimes I will also add a squirt of tomato paste from a tube, but not this time. If you choose to add picante sauce, now is the time to add it. More Jalapeño pepper adds more heat, so you decide how much to use.  Not trimming away the white membrane and seed also adds heat. You will notice I removed all seeds and white membrane from my jalapeños.

Add the chicken broth 2 times the amount of liquid as rice.

Ready for the microwave.

Use a lid on the dish and microwave on high until it comes to a boil, maybe 4 or 5 minutes, but seldom for 6 minutes. watch carefully because twenty seconds after it starts boiling, it will boil over. As soon as you see it boiling, set the microwave for fifteen minutes at a power level of 20% and walk away. When the microwave shuts off, it is ready. Fluff with a fork to mix in all of the onions and peppers and try not to eat too much before serving.

For refried beans:

1 can of refried beans|
1 Tablespoon onion, chopped
1/2 Tablespoon Jalapeno pepper, chopped
4 Tabespoons Chicken Broth
1 Teaspoon Adobo Seasoning


Mix all in microwave bowl
Microwave for four or five minutes with cover on bowl
Stir once or twice while microwaving.

Chicken Enchiladas


1 1/2 cups cooked chicken, shredded
12 ounces or more Monterrey Jack Cheese, shredded
If you like them zippy, you can substitute Pepper Jack cheese for the Monterrey Jack
1/2 cup onion, chopped
1/4 cup green bell pepper
2 Tablespoons Jalapeño pepper, diced
2 Tablespoons butter
2 Tablespoons AP flour
1 cup chicken broth
1 can green chilis, chopped
3 Tablespoons sour cream
8 10-inch flour tortillas 
Salt and Black Pepper, to taste
1 teaspoon Lawry's Garlic Salt
1 Tablespoon Adobo Seasoning


Preheat oven to 350 degrees F
Shred cooked chicken
Dice peppers and onions, shred cheese, Heat skillet
Add half of the Jalapeno's to the shredded cheese. I guess that turns it into pepper jack.

Sauté the peppers and onion in 2 Tablespoons butter

When tender, add the flour, Garlic salt, salt and black pepper

Cook for one or two minutes. Do not brown the flour. You want the sauce to be white.

Add the chicken broth and Adobo Seasoning

Add the can of chopped green chiles

I like to add a little Monterrey jack cheese to my sauce. It helps with thickness and flavor

Add sour cream to sauce

When sauce is nice and thick, add 1/4 of it to shredded chicken. Mix well.

Wet the bottom of a 10 by 10 oven proof dish with some of the sauce. Sometimes, I will also sprinkle a bit of chopped jalapeños to the bottom for more flavor. 

Portion the sauced chicken onto the center of a flour tortilla. Some might want a corn tortilla and that is fine, just not for mine because I prefer flour tortillas.

Add a little shredded Monterrey cheese and jalapeños on chicken - as much as you want.

Roll the tortilla tightly and place in oven dish with the seam down.


and keep going until all of the filling has been used This one made six well filled enchiladas. 

Cover with sauce

Cover with lots of the shredded cheese and jalapeño mixture

just another photo

Cook uncovered in oven at 350 until bubbly and slightly browned.

Plate with Spanish rice. I just love Spanish Rice and could eat my weight in it.

And refried beans. I like to mix my beans and rice on the fork when eating. Sometimes, when we eat out, I will add Picante sauce to the rice on the plate, but this one came out great without it

On the plate. I took lots of photos. At least I deleted a few. Just scroll through them.

Leftovers. I always make enough so we will have leftovers, even if there are no refried beans leftover.

Thanks for looking at my post.
God Bless You


Anonymous said...

It is 9 AM and your pics and recipe have me wanting Mexican right now. Wonder how many people will be eating Mexican for lunch now! ;-)

Another great one, Thanks.

Anonymous said...

The first time my wife made Mexican rice I was blown away. I never realized it was supposed to actually have flavor and not just appear to be died red. If only Mexican restaurants would put in a little more effort beside dropping a few cubes of knorr tomato bullion in a rice cooker with 20 kilos of rice.

Anonymous said...

I've enjoyed this same combination paired with a cold mug of Dos Equis. Thanks for posting!

Anonymous said...

I for one will be joining you figuratively. Love these recipes as it keeps my girls busy.

Anonymous said...

Looks terrific, do you avoid fresh cilantro? I wish I could grow it successfully.

Anonymous said...

3:04, you can't grow cilantro here for very long. It's just too hot. Starting right about now, as a matter of fact. I tried to grow it several times and about mid-May, it just dies. Maybe if you did it indoors.

Anonymous said...

Check your measurements on the rice. 1 1/2 cups of broth is not twice as much as 1/2 cup rice.

Martha Stewart said...

@ 3:04 PM / 5:58 PM - I grow herbs indoors with an Aerogarden. Hydroponic and works great.

Anonymous said...

I grow cilantro all over the garden and yard because I let it go to seed every year. It is a spring crop, and the plants are now covered with seeds which I'll allow to dry naturally on the plants. The green leaves and stems are called cilantro. The dried seeds are called coriander, and they have a different taste than the leaves and stems.

I do the same thing with parsley and dill which also are spring crops. I used to grow tomatillos the same way (let them reseed) but they started taking over the garden and yard so now I just buy them at Valdez market on Old Canton Road.

The enchiladas sound delicious, Chef Bear.

Stuff About ZeroBear PolyBear said...

6:36 - I count the tomato sauce as liquid too. IT and the water should equal 2X the rice measurement. If not, I add a little more water, but most of the last half cup is tomato sauce.

Anonymous said...

Stuff - I was with 6:36, but now am even more confused by your response. Counting the tomato sauce as liquid to now makes it four times the rice, rather than the three.

Stuff About ZeroBear PolyBear said...

Sorry about the recipe error guys. I corrected it. Should be 1/2 cup rice, 3/4 cup water and half a can of tomato paste, plus enough water to make 1/2 cup rice and 1 cup liquid.

Believe it or not, in the world of polyfiber stuffed bears, I am considered pretty smart, at least as far as I can tell.

Anonymous said...

haha! No problem at all. Keep posting the great recipes

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