Garry's Tex-Mex Enchiladas

Recipe By : Garry Howard

1 dozen corn tortillas
1/2 pound American cheese -- grated
1 large onion -- chopped
1 large can chili with beef -- your favorite brand (NO BEANS)
vegetable oil

When I was growing up in south Texas, these enchiladas with rice and refried beans was the essence of Mexican food as I knew it. I now make a lot more sophisticated types of enchilada sauces and use different cheeses but I still make these occasionally when I get the craving for them. Also, we hardly ever have a family get-together with my mother and brother without making these. It's funny how you can't really outgrow the foods you ate while growing up.

Warning, this is definitely NOT low-fat chow!

Add just enough vegetable oil to a frying pan to cover the bottom and heat over medium flame. Fry the tortillas in the oil just enough to heat and soften them. If the oil is too hot, or if you fry them too long, they will turn hard and crisp and you won't be able to roll them. A few seconds on each side is usually enough. Stack on a plate covered with a paper towel.

This recipe calls for American cheese. For Tex-Mex enchiladas no other cheese will do. American cheese has just the right salty flavor and melts to a great gooey consistency. I buy a chunk of American cheese at the deli and grate it. Make sure you have American 'cheese' and not the imitation cheese food stuff. Even though most people don't accept American cheese as 'real' cheese, and it is processed, there is a difference. Don't try to use those individually wrapped slices. I like Land-O-Lakes white American best.

Sprinkle some cheese and grated onion on a tortilla and carefully roll into a tube. Lay in a casserole dish with the seam side down. Continue until all the tortillas are filled. In a saucepan, heat the can of chili and pour evenly over the top of the filled tortillas.

Bake in a 350 degree oven until the enchiladas are heated through and the chili is starting to bubble. Sprinkle remaining grated cheese on top and return to oven until the cheese melts.

Serve with Mexican rice and refried beans.

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