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Flautas to the Rescue

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One of my weeknight time-savers is to grill way more chicken than I need for that meal, so I can use it in other dishes during the week. The only problem is that my kids are tired of chicken quesadillas, chicken salad, chicken pasta, chicken panini, chicken pizza...anything and everything chicken.  Old habits are hard to break, which is why I found myself with four extra chicken breasts come Sunday night, cursing myself when neither kid was excited by the idea of chicken wraps for lunch. They got PB&J.

Halfway through the day on Monday (and this is where I especially love my job), as I was wrapping up some shredded cheddar, corn tortillas and chopped cilantro, a new use for my leftover chicken came to me. Flautas! Meat-filled corn tortillas, rolled tightly and fried until crispy and yummy. I made them (and rice, and black beans, and a green salad) in just about 30 minutes. Here's how easy they are:


Chicken and Cheese Flautas
Total: 30 Min
4 to 5 servings

3 cooked chicken-breast halves, finely chopped
1/2 cup coarsely shredded cheddar cheese
Salt and freshly ground pepper
16 yellow corn tortillas (not thick)
1 1/2 cups vegetable oil for frying
Sour cream, chopped cilantro, guacamole and hot sauce for serving

1.    In a bowl, combine the chicken and cheddar and season with salt and pepper. Brush the tortillas on both sides lightly with some of the oil, stack them and wrap them loosely in plastic. Microwave for 30 seconds or until warmed and softened.
2.    Arrange half of the tortillas on a work surface, keeping the other half wrapped. Divide half of the filling between the tortillas and roll into tight cylinders. Place 2 flautas seam-sides together and join them with a pair of toothpicks. Repeat with the remaining tortillas and filling.
3.     Heat the remaining oil in a large skillet until shimmering. Add the flautas and cook over high  heat, turning once, until golden and crisp, about 5 minutes. Drain on paper towels, remove the toothpicks and serve with the sour cream, cilantro, guacamole and hot sauce. 

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