¼ cup vegetable oil, plus more for the tortillas
1 pound ground beef
1 medium yellow onion, finely diced
4 cloves garlic, minced
¼ cup dark chili powder, preferably ancho chili powder
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon dried oregano
2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Pinch of sugar
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
3 cups chicken stock or water
1 tablespoon tomato paste
12 corn tortillas
3 cups shredded cheddar cheese
2 cups salsa verde, for serving
Heat oven to 375 degrees.
Make the chili con carne: Heat ¼ cup oil in a large skillet over high. Add ground beef, onion and garlic, and cook until the beef has cooked through and the onion begins to soften, about 5 minutes. Add chili powder, cumin, oregano, salt, pepper and sugar; cook for another minute. Add flour, stirring to combine with the meat, then stir in chicken stock and tomato paste. Bring chili to a simmer and cook slowly, stirring occasionally, 15 minutes. If the chili becomes too thick, add a splash of water.
Assemble the enchiladas: Heat a skillet over medium-high heat and add just enough oil to coat the bottom of the pan. With a pair of tongs or a slotted spoon, place a tortilla in the pan and heat, turning once, until it's soft and pliable, about a minute. Place the tortilla on an oven-proof plate and cover with a large spoonful of the chili con carne and a large spoonful of cheese. (If you don't have plates that can be heated to 375 degrees, you can assemble the stacks on a baking sheet, then transfer them to serving plates when they come out of the oven.)
Repeat, stacking 2 more layers of tortillas, chili and cheese on top of the first. Repeat the process, building 3 more enchilada stacks on 3 more serving plates (for a total of 4). Place the plates with enchiladas in the oven and heat until the cheese is melted and bubbly, about 15 minutes.
While the enchiladas are in the oven, fry 4 eggs any way you like them. Place a fried egg on top of each stack of enchiladas and serve with salsa verde on the side.
"Big Ranch, Big City: Recipes From Lambert's Texas Kitchens" by Louis Lambert with June Naylor (2011 Ten Speed Press)