Enchiladas Suizas is a phrase used quite liberally these days to describe a wide range of enchilada dishes. Variations will get even wilder once you head north of the U.S./Mexico border.
Luckily it's easy to return to the essence of the dish by building a traditional green sauce and mixing it with a bit of cream. This will give you an authentic, mouth-watering meal that comes with a hidden benefit; your tastebuds will now have a Suiza-meter for the rest of your life that will help you detect the real Suiza (or not).
We’ll be using creme fraiche here, but you can always use Mexican Crema or heavy cream to get a similar result. Also note that you can substitute jalapenos for the serrano peppers if it's hard to find serranos in your area.
Rotisserie chicken will work in a pinch but for this batch I poached a chicken breast with some onion, cilantro and a pinch of salt. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and let simmer until cooked through, about 20 minutes or so. Set aside to cool and then shred it using two forks.
Tomatillos are typically the base of most Suiza sauces, and if you add in a poblano you'll get rich, rewarding sauce that will turn this recipe into a repeat!
We'll plop the tomatillos and poblano in the oven and let them roast at 400F.
The tomatillos will only need about 10-15 minutes in the oven. You can pull them out when they turn army green and then let the poblano roast a bit longer.
Add the roasted tomatillos to a blender along with:
½ white onion
2 cloves garlic
½ serrano pepper
10-12 cilantro sprigs.
Once the poblano starts to get charred it's roasted enough.
Cut off the stem and de-seed the poblano. You can also scrape off the loose bits of skin but don't worry about getting every last bit.
Add the poblano to the other ingredients in the blender and pulse blend. Give a quick taste for heat level. If you want more heat you can add the other half of the serrano pepper. This mixture will get diluted a bit by the cream and stock so I tend to make this blender mixture a bit more spicy than usual. So yes, I added more serrano!
Heat a dollop of oil in a saucepan on medium heat. Add the green sauce from the blender and simmer for a few minutes.
Add 1 cup chicken stock and ¼ cup creme fraiche to the simmering green sauce. Cook on medium-low heat until heated throughout.
Add the shredded chicken to a mixing bowl along with:
2-3 tablespoons finely chopped onion
a handful of cheese
pinch of salt
This is the inner mixture of the enchiladas. You also have the option of adding a few tablespoons of the green sauce or even a bit of the creme fraiche to this mixture.
Okay, heat the tortillas in the oven for a few minutes. This will make them easier to roll up. (Or nuke them in some damp paper towels for 60 seconds.)
Prepare your baking dish for the enchiladas by adding a few spoonfuls of the green sauce.
On a plate, add a couple spoonfuls of the green sauce. Dredge a tortilla in the sauce, flip, and fill with a small handful of the chicken mixture.
Roll up and place on the baking dish seam side down. Keep going ‘til the chicken is gone. This recipe will make 7-9 enchiladas depending on the size of your tortillas.
Add the remaining sauce on top of the enchiladas along with a layer of cheese.
Bake for 10-15 minutes at 400F or until all the cheese is melted.
Sweet Suizas, no?
Freshly chopped cilantro and a drizzle of Crema are optional garnishes that might send your taste-testers over the moon.
This dish has such a rich, authentic flavor. Another great example of the poblano pepper adding some zest to your life!
I'll put the recipe box for these Enchiladas Suizas below. Feel free to print it out if you want to reference it in the kitchen.
Next up we'll take a look at an enchilada sauce made with some dried chilis! Click the 'Next Recipe' button down below to continue.
Enchiladas Suizas -- Chicken Enchiladas with Creamy Green Sauce
- 5 tomatillos
- 1 jalapeno (or serrano)
- ½ white onion
- 2 garlic cloves
- 10-12 sprigs cilantro
- 1 poblano
- 1 cup chicken stock
- ¼ cup heavy cream
- 8 corn tortillas
- 1 large chicken breast
- 2 tablespoons white onion finely diced
- 1 cup shredded cheese (I used Jack)
- freshly chopped cilantro (optional)
- Feel free to cook the chicken however you want. I go back and forth between poaching it and the brine-and-bake method.
- To poach the chicken, cover the chicken breast with water in a saucepan and bring it to a boil. Add a half onion, cilantro sprigs and a pinch of salt for additional flavor. Once boiling, reduce heat and let simmer for 20 minutes or until the chicken is cooked through. Once cooked, set aside to cool.
- To brine-and-bake the chicken, add 1/4 cup salt to a quart of water in a mixing bowl. Dissolve the salt and add the chicken, letting it brine covered in the fridge for 30 minutes or so. If the chicken isn't fully submerged then add a bit more water. Once brined, pat dry the chicken and add it to a baking sheet. Bake in the oven at 400F for 20 minutes or until the chicken is cooked through and no longer pink inside (160F).
- Meanwhile, de-husk and rinse the tomatillos. I usually de-stem them as well. Roast the tomatillos and poblano in the oven at 400F for around 25-30 minutes.
- Cut off the stem and de-seed the roasted poblano. You can also remove any loose bits of skin. Add it to a blender along with the tomatillos, 1/2 onion, 2 garlic cloves, 10-12 sprigs of cilantro, and 1/2 of a jalapeno pepper. Pulse blend and taste for heat level, adding the other half of the jalapeno if you want more heat.
- Heat a glug of oil in a saucepan over medium heat. Add the green sauce from the blender and simmer for a few minutes. Add 1 cup chicken stock and 1/4 cup heavy cream to the mixture. Cook on medium-low until heated through.
- Use two forks to shred the chicken and add it to a mixing bowl along with 2-3 tablespoons finely chopped onion, a handful of cheese, and dashes of salt. You can also add some green sauce if you want.
- Heat the corn tortillas in the oven for a few minutes. (Or nuke them in some damp paper towels for 60 seconds.)
- Prepare the baking dish by adding a few spoonfuls of the green sauce to prevent sticking.
- On a plate, add a couple spoonfuls of the green sauce. Dredge a tortilla in the sauce, flip, and fill with a small handful of the chicken mixture. You can optionally add more cheese on top. Roll up and place seam side down on the baking dish. Keep going ‘til the chicken is gone. Add the remaining sauce on top of the enchiladas along with a final layer of cheese.
- Bake for 10-15 minutes (400F) or until the cheese is melted.
- Serve immediately. You can optionally garnish with freshly chopped cilantro.