Growing up in San Francisco prior to gentrification, I had the opportunity to enjoy a wide variety of cultures and the foods they offered. This was a definite blessing.
I love food, period. There are times I crave a certain flavor, but do not want it in the original form so I adapt according to my preferences and/or eating style.
I’m gluten-free for health reasons, therefore I’ll adapt a meal to make it gluten-free. Recently, my body has had negative reactions to dairy. That means I’m cooking with dairy less. I still yearn for the variety of tastes that I’ve known for most of my life however.
I absolutely LOVE the diversity within Latin American foods. I’ve experienced many different cultural flavors, and I’m happy that my palate holds a memory of many. One of my favorites is enchiladas, which I know to be from the Mexican tradition.
The other day I craved enchiladas, but knew I wanted the flavor without putting them together or placing an order at an outside restaurant. I decided to create an enchilada sauce, marinate some already prepared chicken in it and then serve over pasta.
My son was skeptical, but after the first bite he was like, “Oh, this is good mom,”lol. He cleaned his plate.
I’m very cautious about cultural appropriation in life, including food. I have the deepest appreciation for the wide variety of cultures our world offers and grateful I had the opportunity to experience many through food.
I am not an expert in Mexican or any Latin American cuisine. I just grew up in a diverse environment, plus have had a wide cultural range of friends and associates my entire life. I have a deep appreciation for the foods and traditions.
I created this enchilada sauce based on the flavors that I’ve experienced before. This was my first time working with tomatillos and after growing tired of surfing the internet looking for a blog I wanted to read about the subject, I just winged it.
I literally threw everything in a stock pot, let it boil till it looked done and then blended. I was very surprised at the flavor seeing this was my first try. The hints of cumin combined with that beautiful tart tomatillo and the jalapeño kick, made this a very worth while endeavor. I’m happy with this dish and even more excited that it worked.
Thank you for reading!
Fettuccine with Chicken Enchilada Sauce
- 5 tomatillos
- 1 small onion, chopped
- 1 jalapeño
- 3 garlic cloves
- 2 tablespoons sea salt
- 2 teaspoons black pepper
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- 4 cups water
- 1 box of fettuccine noodles (I use gluten-free)
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 tablespoons sea salt
- 3 cups of cooked chicken
- Pull the husks off the tomatillos and compost if you can. Rinse tomatillos well to get any sticky residue off. Chop them in quarters. Peel and cut the onion. Chop garlic and jalapeño, then place in a stock pot with the other ingredients. Add in salt, pepper, cumin and water. Bring to a boil, turn down the heat and let simmer for 45 minutes, or until tomatillos are soft.
- Once enchilada sauce is complete, pour in a blender cup and puree until all ingredients are completely blended. This can take up to 5 minutes. It will look like the consistency of applesauce. Pour the sauce in a bowl and place to the side.
- Chop up your cooked chicken. I typically bake chicken legs and chop them for my enchiladas. You can also use rotisserie chicken if you prefer. Place the chopped chicken into the enchilada sauce and put aside.
- Boil a pot of water for your noodles. Add in olive oil and salt to the water. The oil helps to separate the noodles and the salt adds additional flavor. Follow the instructions on the box for how long to cook your noodles. Once that time has passed, typically 10 minutes, use a fork to pull out one noodle to see if they are the right texture for you. Once the noodles are fully cooked, drain and put them into a large serving bowl. Pour the chicken in the enchilada sauce over the top of the noodles and mix.
- Serve and enjoy!