Felicia’s Enchiladas | Food | Pittsburgh | Pittsburgh City Paper

Felicia’s Enchiladas

I remember a time when he would tell me about the winding adventures of his youth.

My Uncle Dick and I hardly ever speak now, but I remember a time when he would tell me about the winding adventures of his youth. A fantastic storyteller, cook and world-wanderer, Dick is also an artist and maker of children’s toys. In the 1970s, he moved down to San Miguel de Allende, a small mountain town in central Mexico that was a mecca for artists and craftsmen. I think he lived out some of the happiest times of his life there in the small apartment he rented. The caretaker was a woman named Felicia, and it was she who passed this recipe on to him. I’ve modified it for ease, but I still imagine him young and happy while I’m eating it. 



  • 2 dozen corn tortillas
  • 1 cup cheddar cheese or pepper jack, shredded
  • 1 cup cilantro, chopped
  • 1 cup onions, chopped
  • 1 16-oz. can refried beans ( I like the kind with jalapeños)
  • ½  tbsp. chili powder

White Sauce

  • 2 tbsp. flour
  • 3 tbsp. butter
  • 2 cups chicken stock
  • 1 4.5-oz. can green diced chilies
  • 1 pint sour cream


Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Prepare the filling by sauteeing the onions for about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally, until softened. Warm the refried beans until spreadable. Heat a frying pan on the stove over low to medium heat; add a little canola oil (or any oil besides olive oil). Fry tortillas in pan for 15 seconds on both sides. 

In a 13-by-9-inch pan, lay down fried tortillas until the bottom is covered. Then, layer refried beans, cheese, onions and cilantro. Repeat layers until pan is full, then top with a layer of tortillas. Set aside. 

In a saucepan over medium heat, melt butter and mix in flour to form a roux. Add chicken stock and stir until thickened. Add chilies. Turn down heat. Add sour cream. Stir in chili powder.  Pour over tortillas until covered. Bake for 25 minutes.

Comments (0)

Add a comment

  • Pretty Ugly

    @ James Gallery

    Mondays-Saturdays, 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Continues through Nov. 2