PBS LearningMedia
PBS LearningMedia
Melinda's Garden Moments
Friday, 04 May 2012 13:50

Delicious Discoveries: Cinco de Mayo

Today I’m taking you in the kitchen for a festive Cinco de Mayo feat! Always celebrated on the fifth of May, Cinco de Mayo is a festive and fun holiday that is celebrated not just in Mexico but largely throughout the United States as a way to honor and remember the first day of Mexico’s independence. Since cooking and food is such an important part of Latin culture, why not celebrate this Cinco de Mayo by preparing this great recipe for your family and friends.


Try my recipe for Two Chili, Chicken and Cheesy Enchiladas 


Two Chili, Chicken and Cheesy Enchiladas


15 large tomatillos, outer paper skin and top stems removed then washed

2 jalapenos, top stems removed

2 poblano chilies, top stems removed

8 cloves of garlic, peeled

2 yellow onions, quartered

½ cup extra virgin olive oil

2 teaspoons salt, kosher

1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1 teaspoon cumin

4 chicken breasts, skinless and boneless

3 limes, juiced

1/8 cup white vinegar

¼  - ½ cup warm water

2 cups Monterey jack cheese

12 whole wheat flour tortillas, preferably corn and flour blend


Preheat your oven to 400 degrees. While the oven warms up, peel and wash your tomatillos and remove the stem from the top. Place the tomatillos on a sheet tray along with the jalapenos, poblanos, garlic cloves and onion pieces. Drizzle with some of the olive oil and season with salt, pepper, and cumin.  Place the chicken breasts in a small baking dish and squeeze the lime juice over the chicken, and then drizzle with a bit of olive oil and season with salt, pepper and cumin.
  Place the vegetables and chicken in the oven and roast both at the same time until the chicken is cooked through and the vegetables are browned and softened, about 35 minutes.

Remove the chicken and vegetables from the oven and let cool slightly for 10 minutes. Once cool, shred the chicken using two forks and set the shredded meat aside in a small bowl. Next place all of the vegetables in a blender with the vinegar and blend to puree. If the mixture needs some liquid add warm water a little at a time, blending aftereach addition of water. Once a smooth salsa consistency is achieved pour this delicious green enchilada sauce in a shallow dish. To begin rolling the enchiladas, coat the bottom of a (11x13) glass casserole dish with a few ladles of the enchilada sauce to cover. Dip one tortilla into the enchilada sauce to coat completely then place on a plate and sprinkle the inside with a bit of shredded chicken and a bit of jack cheese, and then roll it tight and place it inside the casserole dish. Continue filling and rolling the enchiladas and layering them in the casserole dish until the dish is full and you’ve used all of your tortillas. Pour the remaining sauce over the enchiladas and sprinkle a line of cheese down the center of the enchiladas. Bake these in the oven for 25 minutes just until they are warmed through and the sauce and cheese is bubbly on top. Happy Cinco de Mayo!