First off, let me tell you that this poblano sauce is the STAR of this recipe. I mean, the chicken is great and all, but this sauce, this sauce you are going to want to DRINK.
Long ago I scoured the internet to try and create the perfect “verde” sauce for my chicken enchiladas. I usually ended up with something either way too tangy or something that tasted more like alfredo sauce. After a lot of tweaking, I present to you today with the B-E-S-T green sauce you will ever taste! (I’m setting the bar really high, I know..but trust me on this one guys.)
This is the meal I usually make when I am cooking for someone for the first time or am having a dinner party just because it can be made earlier in the day (and because I usually get a ton of compliments on these). 😉
You can make the chicken the day before, and on the day of just assemble the enchiladas and place them in baking trays. Right before dinner, pour the sauce on top and pop them in the oven! Hostess with the Mostess, hollaaaa!
The chicken is made in the pressure cooker, which makes it much easier than any other method, and a lot faster. I used to be afraid of using the pressure cooker, but lately I’ve been using it for everything from making chicken to boiling potatoes! If you don’t have a pressure cooker, you can use a slow cooker and should get similar results.
Shredded Chicken Enchiladas with Poblano Cream Sauce
Yield 10 Enchiladas
2 lbs. boneless skinless chicken breasts, cleaned and chopped into 2 inch pieces
1 Small Red Onion, finely diced
1 Small Tomato, finely diced
1 small red bell pepper finely diced
1/2 cup scallions, sliced thin
2 teaspoons cumin seeds
1 tablespoon minced garlic
1 teaspoon chili powder
1/4 teaspoon turmeric powder
2 tablespoons taco seasoning
1 tablespoon coriander powder
1 tablespoon cumin powder
1/4 cup sour cream
2 tablespoons oil
1/2 cup chopped cilantro
Salt to Taste
6 Poblano Peppers
2 cups chicken broth
1 1/4 cup sour cream
3 tablespoons all purpose flour
3 tablespoons butter
1 Tablespoon garlic, minced
1 tablespoon cumin powder
2 cups cilantro, washed and chopped
1/4 cup queso fresco, grated
1 cup monterey jack cheese, shredded
10 Flour Tortillas
For the Chicken:
- In a pressure cooker, heat oil over medium high heat. Once the oil is hot add the cumin seeds and let crackle for a few seconds.
- Add in the onions, tomatoes, red peppers, green onions, garlic, chili powder, turmeric powder, coriander powder, cumin powder, taco seasoning and salt.
- Sauté this for about 3 minutes on medium high heat, being careful not to burn.
- Add sour cream and chicken to pressure cooker and stir well.
- Close the lid on the pressure cooker and let it go for about 8 whistles. Pressure cookers are different so you may want to start at about 4-5 whistles and check on the chicken and let it go for more whistles if needed.
- Once you open the pressure cooker and it has cooled down, add the cilantro and use two forks (or your hands) to shred the chicken. There may be excess liquid but as you shred the chicken, the liquid will get soaked up.
Roasting the Poblano Peppers:
- Set your oven to a High Broil setting.
- Brush the poblano peppers lightly with oil and broil on the top most rack, turning the peppers every 4-6 minutes or until all sides are charred and blackened.
- Once the peppers are charred on each side remove them into a heat safe bowl or baking dish and cover tightly to sweat the peppers for about 5 minutes.
- Uncover the peppers and peel off as much of the charred skin and the seeds as you can .
- Discard the charred skin and seeds, roughly chop the peppers and set aside.
Make the Sauce:
- In a heavy bottom pot heat the butter and garlic over medium heat and add the flour.
- Make a roux by constantly stirring the butter & flour mixture until it has a nutty fragrance and is golden in color, about 3 minutes.
- Slowly whisk in the chicken broth in small amounts until the mixture is thick and bubbly.
- Once you have added all of the broth, add the sour cream, poblano peppers, cilantro, cumin & salt. Stir until smooth and all ingredients are incorporated.
- Take the pot off the stove and using an electric hand blender, blend the sauce until it is smooth and creamy. If you do not have an electric hand blender, work in batches and blend the cooled sauce in a regular blender carefully.
- Add queso fresco to the sauce and set aside.
To assemble the enchiladas:
- Heat a skillet on medium low, add 1 tsp of oil and add two or three flour tortillas to the pan depending on how big your pan is.
- Working quickly, add about ¼ cup shredded chicken in the middle of the tortilla, top with a handful of the monterey jack cheese and seal the enchilada closed.
- Lightly brown the wrapped enchiladas until they are golden brown on both sides. Remove from pan and place them in a an oven proof baking dish.
- Continue to do this for the rest of the chicken & tortillas.
- Place all of the enchiladas in an oven proof baking dish and poor the sauce generously over the top.
- Bake for 15 minutes on 375 degrees or until hot and bubbly!
- Garnish with sliced green onion, tomatoes, & queso fresco !
TIP: Do not add salt to the poblano sauce until the very end. Depending on what chicken broth you use, and in addition the queso fresco could make the sauce salty enough.