Chile Rellenos is a traditional Mexican dish that originated in Puebla. The term literally means stuffed chili and is typically made from fresh poblano peppers. In place of a poblano pepper, a Hatch green chili, pasilla, jalapeno chili pepper, Ahaheim, or ancho chili can be used. The dish is usually made by battering a skinless pepper and stuffing it with picadillo meat or cheese. The stuffed pepper is then covered with a red sauce. Picadillo meat can be made of diced pork, nuts, and raisins or seasoned with canella. The pepper is covered with corn masa flour or an egg batter before frying.
During Lent, beef, pork, and poultry are avoided by Catholics on Ash Wednesday, Holy Thursday, Fridays and Good Friday. Because of this, chile rellenos can be made stuffed with tuna, cheese, separated maize grains, other seeds, sliced vegetables or a mixture of all of these.
How To Roast, Peel And Seed Poblano Chiles
In order to prepare chile rellenos, the peppers need to be roasted, peeled, and seeded. In order to roast the peppers, place them on a broiler pan and place in oven. Broil peppers until the skins are charred or covered with black blisters. Be sure to turn them occasionally. Place chilies in resealable plastic bag and seal the bag. Let the chilies stand for 10 minutes. Remove from bag and remove peels. Be extra careful not to break the skins. To remove the seeds, make a vertical cut in each chili and remove the small cluster of seeds attached to the base of the chili.
Chiles Rellenos With Sweet Picadillo
This recipe uses poblano chilies which can usually be found in your grocery store. This recipe serves 6 people with a pepper each. The picadillo features a mixture of ground beef, raisins, and almonds. You can prepare these chile rellenos in advance, if needed, by preparing as directed and refrigerating up to 24 hours. When you get ready to serve, pop them in the oven covered for 20 minutes or until heated all the way through.
This dish can be topped with sour cream, shredded cheese, and pico de galo. Guacamole makes a great side for this delicious meal. Ground chicken, turkey, or pork can be substituted in place of ground beef. Low fat sour cream can be used in place of regular sour cream to cut down on calories and fat.
What You Need:
- 1 ½ pound lean ground beef
- 2 tablespoons zesty Italian salad dressing
- 1 8-ounce can of tomato sauce
- ½ cup toasted slivered almonds
- ¼ cup raisins
- 6 large roasted, peeled, seeded, and deveined poblano chilies
- ½ cup sour cream
How To Make It:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large skillet, brown meat and salad dressing while draining if necessary.
Stir in tomato sauce and bring to a boil. Stir in nuts and raisins. Simmer on medium-low heat for 10 minutes or until there is not any liquid remaining. Stir occasionally.
Spoon meat mixture into chilies and place in a shallow baking dish. Cover dish with foil and bake for 10 minutes or until heated through.
Serve topped with sour cream.
Christine Szalay-Kudra is an author, food expert and mom of four boys. She is the owner of the Recipe Publishing Network, a group of sites dedicated to fine food and information for cooks.