First, a disclaimer. These are not “chef-y” enchiladas. They are not likely something you will ever find at a fancy-schmancy restaurant. They are also not anywhere near authentic Mexican food.
That being said, they are a household favorite. In their history, there have been a lot of variations, but this most recent version has been one of the best. Feel free to substitute the meat for chopped up chicken or turkey. (great way to use up leftover turkey from Thanksgiving!) Feel free to adjust the chili powder, chipotle chili powder, or other seasonings as you desire. The way I have written this recipe makes for a pretty spicy sauce, so beware. But ultimately, be prepared for a cheesy, melty, comfort-food style enchilada dish. It may not be the most eloquent dish you will ever prepare, but I hope it will become a favorite at your house as well!
1 T oil, preferably vegetable or peanut
½ onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 can diced tomatoes
1-2 T Chipotle powder
2-3 T chili powder
½ T cumin powder
½ c to a cup of water or broth
1 lb ground beef
1 t chili powder
1 T cumin powder
1 T garlic powder
Salt and pepper
4 oz Cream cheese
12 flour tortillas
About 2 c Grated cheddar cheese
Preheat oven to 350.
Coat a large skillet with oil, heat to medium and sauté onions until translucent, about 3-4 minutes, add garlic, sauté a minute longer. Put onion, garlic, and tomatoes into blender (I use a hand blender, makes it easier) and puree. Pour back into skillet and simmer. Add chipotle powder and chili powder, tasting until you like the flavor. For me, it was 2 T of the chipotle powder and 2 T of chili powder, but I like it pretty spicy. Use less chipotle powder for a milder sauce. Dilute sauce as it simmers with water. Add salt to taste. Simmer about 30 minutes.
As sauce is cooking, heat another pan and brown ground beef. Season with chili powder, garlic powder, cumin, salt and pepper. Once meat is browned, add a little sauce (about ½ cup), about ¾ c grated cheese, and 4 oz cream cheese. Mix until melted.
Assemble the enchiladas by laying the tortilla flat in one hand, and using a spatula or spoon, placing a thick strip of filling down the middle. Roll the enchilada and place it in a 13X9 inch baking dish, seam side down. Repeat with remaining tortillas.
Pour sauce over enchiladas, and top with shredded cheese. Bake 10-15 minutes or until bubbly.
Top with sour cream and/or cilantro, if desired.