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Don't mention its name "old clothes." (beef enchiladas)

Beef braised until it's so tender it falls apart as you tear it into fine shreds is known in Mexico as ropas viejas--old clothes or rags. Despite the humble name, this flavorful meat is a classic filling for enchiladas.

These enchiladsas team ropas viejas with green chillies and sour cream. You can assemble then ahead. Shredded Beef Enchiladas Salad oil 1 small onion, chopped 2 large cans (7 oz. each) diced green chillies 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour 2 cups sour cream 3 cups (3/4 lb.) shredded jack cheese Salt 12 corn tortillas (6- to 7-in. diameter) Shredded beef (recipe follows)

In an 8- to 10-inch frying pan, combine 2 tablespoons salad oil, the onion, chillies, and cumin. Cook, stirring occasionally, over medium heat until onion is soft, about 15 minutes. Mix in the flour, then blend in 1 cup sour cream and stir until simmering. Remove from heat and blend in 1 cup cheese; add salt to taste.

Pour 1/2 inch salad oil into a 7- to 8-inch frying pan. Set over medium-high heat until hot. Cook tortillas, 1 at a time, until surface bubbles and tortillas are still limp, 5 seconds on each side. Lay the tortillas flat on paper towels to drain.

Spoon about 1/3 cup chili mixture and 1/4 cup shredded beeef down center of each tortilla; roll to enclose. Set enchiladas, seam side down, in a shallow 12- by 15-inch baking pan or dish. (If made ahead, cover and chill as long as overnight.)

Bake, uncovered, in a 375[deg.] over until hot in center, about 15 minutes (about 25 minutes if chilled). Sprinkle remaining cheese evenly on top. Return to oven until cheese melts, about 5 minutes more.

Use a wide spatula to transfer enchiladas to dinner plates. Offer remaining sour cream to spoon on top. Serves 6.--Belinda Freitas, Suisun City, Calif. Shredded beef. Trim and discard most of the fat from a 2-pound piece of boneless beed chuck. Place meat in a 5- to 6-quart pan with 1/4 cup water. Cover and cook over medium heat for 30 minutes. Uncover and cook until liquid boils away and meat is well browned; turn as needed.

Lift out meat. To pan, add 3 tablespoons red wine vinegar; scrape to loosen browned bits. Stir in 1-1/2 cups regular-strength beef broth, 2 tablespoons chili powder, and 1 teaspoon ground cumin. Return meat to pan, bring to a boil, cover, and simmer over medium heat until meat is very tender and easily pulled apart, about 2 hours. Let meat cool, then tear into shreds. Mix with pan juices.
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No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 1984 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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Date:Nov 1, 1984
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