Stephenís Cheese Enchiladas

These enchiladas have a very simple Tex-mex sauce that seems to taste bland by itself, but with cheese on enchiladas really comes out into that taste we love.Rio cheese enchiladas are based on these.

Stephen warns not to use too much chili powder in the sauce, itís the cumin that has the taste you want.And donít make it taste spicy, it needs to be subtle.Adjust the seasonings to taste, but be careful!Stephen does this by feel, so the amounts may not be quite right.The color is not red, but just a sort of darkish tan color, so donít get carried away with the paprika!


Tex-mex Enchilada Sauce:


1/4 cup oil

1/4 cup flour

2 cups water

1 tbsp ground cumin

1 tsp chili powder

1/2 tsp salt, or adjust to your taste

A little paprika, maybe to boost the redness of the color if needed



1 onion chopped very fine Ė 1/8 inch pieces

Shredded Cheese filling is 1/2 Velveeta and 1/2 cheddar cheese
Corn tortillas

Frying oil

Cheddar cheese shredded for topping







Heat the water or broth to boilingwhile you prepare the roux.

Heat oil in a saucepan, then stir in the flour.While it heats and starts to bubble, add the cumin and chili powder.Let the roux bubble for a few minutes (donít brown it).  

Add the boiling liquid to the roux in the saucepan, stirring hard with a whisk.Be careful, the whole thing will boil up when the liquid is poured in.Whisk to smooth out any lumps.Bring to a simmer and boil for about 5 minutes or until the sauce has thickened and smoothed out, stirring all the while.

Add the salt while it is thickening up.

Taste and correct the salt and spices to your liking.Remember, it is supposed to be pretty bland.Wait till you put cheese on top!Stir and turn off the heat.


Preheat the oven to about 350 degrees.

Heat frying oil in a panbigger than the tortillas and with high sides.There should be about 1/2 inch deep.It should be hot enough that the tortillas start to puff up a little within a few seconds of putting them in.

Alternative: Dip the tortillas in the sauce.You need extra sauce and itís more messy, but this works.

Alternative 2: Fold a damp towel around the tortillas and microwave them for about 1 minute until they are soft.

Make 2-3 enchiladas per person and put them right on the dinner plate along with your Mexican rice and pinto beans, or whatever else hot that you are serving.Cook them in an oven right on the plate Ė so you need oven proof plates.Microwaving works, but then you donít get the nice crunchy crust on top.

Using tongs, drop the tortillas into the oil one at a time.In a few seconds, they will puff on one side, immediately turn them over and in a second or two lift them out with tongs and drain them over the oil.Too long, and they will start getting crisp and wonít work for enchiladas.

Put about 1/4 cup of shredded cheese filling into the hot tortilla, making a line in the middle.Sprinkle about a teaspoon of chopped onion onto the filling Ė NOT TOO MUCH!Roll up the tortilla into an enchilada.

Spoon the sauce over the 2-3 enchiladas on the plate.Grate a SMALL AMOUNT of cheddar over the enchiladas and rice and beans.You should be able to see the food between the pieces of cheese, not a clump of cheese on top.Sprinkle another small amount of chopped onion over the cheese.

Bake each plate in the oven for about 5 minutes, until the cheese is melted and the sauce is bubbling on the plate.Serve to many smiles.