I made the enchiladas tonight.
To soften to tortillas, i did the spray oil and in to the oven thing. But I must have over done them. After I filled, rolled and baked, they totally fell apart and were all mushy. They tasted good, but didn't hold up. This is usually the problem I have when I make enchiladas. What am I doing wrong? it was so bad, I didn't even want to take a picture.
I also notice that a lot of people here aren't baking their. If I simply dip in oil, then dip in sauce, how do I fill and roll without making a huge mess? Should I forgo baked enchiladas all together??
The thing about enchiladas that many folks don't get is that you should make them with all cooked ingredients that don't require additional baking. When I make a large number for dinner parties, I do bake them, but just so that enchiladas for, say, ten folks all arrive hot at the table at the same time, not because I want them to do any more cooking. If I'm preparing enchiladas for just a few guests, I don't bake them at all.
I don't know about the CI oven method, but for my chicken enchiladas with red sauce, which I do make for a lot of dinner parties and want them to all arrive hot at the table at the same time, I do stick them in the oven to heat up. Whether you roll the enchiladas or just fold them over and put them into your baking dish, you definitely are going to make a mess, but it's not a "huge mess" as you say.
What I do (as I said upthread) is to get my large shallow baking/serving pan and set it on the counter beside my stove. Then I have my skillet on the closest burner to the counter, the sauce simmering in a pan just behind it. I get a glass pie pan and put it on the counter directly in front of me. And I have the bowls with all the "fixin's" right there handy, too.
I ladle some sauce into the pie pan, and also smear some around on the bottom of my baking dish. Then I take the tongs and assemble my enchiladas, one at a time, thusly: Dip one tortilla into the skillet with the hot oil, let it sizzle a few seconds (say 4 or 5), then into the pie pan where, with my fingers, I smear the sauce around to be certain the tortilla is completely sauced. (Cooks more deft than I simply hang onto the tortilla with their tongs and dip it first into the hot oil and then into the saucepan. I can do it if I focus, but invariably at least one or two will soften too much and tear apart in the sauce. With the 'pie pan' method, I don't have to worry about it.) Then into the baking dish, where I add my filling, fold the sauced tortilla over it, and snuggle it up next to the side of the pan, or next to the previous enchilada. You can roll them if you'd like, and sometimes I do. I repeat these steps until the pan is filled. Then I ladle more sauce over. Sometimes I sprinkle with a little white cheese, or some onions, or whatever. If I'm doing this right at dinner time and I have my large and hungry family waiting, I'll go ahead and stick the dish into a hot oven for about 15 minutes just, as I say, to heat through while I finish preparing the rest of the meal. That's simply because it's easier for me to have the enchiladas all arrive at the table at the same time so I can sit down and eat, too, rather than standing over the stove making them for each individual person. It's not because the enchiladas actually require any more cooking. If I'm making them for a party, I'll often make them a day ahead, then cover the dish tightly with plastic and put it into the fridge to wait for serving time. Then into a hot oven for 20 minutes or so, just to heat through. There is no heavy gloppy sauce or anything else that requires extensive baking.
Yes, I've made something of a mess, but it's no worse than the mess from any multi-step cooking. My spaghetti sauce usually requires more cleanup than the enchiladas.
Edited by Jaymes, 23 April 2009 - 09:30 AM.