Chiles rellenos (or stuffed poblano peppers) are a staple of Mexican Cuisine and a well-made version will be one of the most favorable dishes you’ve ever tasted. If you’re worried abou tit being spicy, don’t. Poblanos are completely mild when the seeds are removed. Conversely, if you like some heat, just leave some seeds.
Traditionally, it’s prepared by battering and frying the poblano, but of course we had to find a healthy way to deliver the same tasty outcome. 0% chance that your family won’t love this meal if you give it a try.
3-4 poblanos if large, or 1 per family member if small
1/2-1 lbs of ground beef
1 small yellow, diced fine
2-3 medium chopped into small cubes
2-3 cloves fresh garlic, chopped
2 whole carrots, chopped small (optional)
1 tomato, diced (optional)
3 tbsp tomato paste
3-4 cups of water or chicken stock
Packet of taco seasoning or your own spice blend (heavy on the cumin!)
1 tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder (optional)
Your poblano peppers need to be charred on all sides. This can be done in several ways! If you have a gas stove, you can add them right to the grate and rotate until charred. It’s also super easy on a grill! And finally, if all else fails, you can preheat your oven on high broil, add the poblanos and rotate as you see the color. Remove from the heat and immediately transfer into a zip lock bag and seal. Let sit for 15 minutes to steam while you prep the rest of your ingredients.
Prep your onion, carrot (if using), fresh tomato (if using) potato and garlic. Chopping your vegetables fine and uniform in size will help everything cook evenly. Set aside. Preheat your oven to 375 degrees. Grate your block of cheese and add back to the fridge.
Return to your poblanos if they have cooled enough to handle. The skin should slid easily off. If certain parts of the skin remain, that’s ok, as long as the loose and waxy sections have come off. Make a single slit on one side from the top down, opening enough to grab the seeds from the top and discard. Leaving some seeds will give the final product a little bit of a kick, if desired. Set aside until ready to stuff.
Brown your grown beef. Drain the majority of the fat/grease that was released. Add your seasoning, and cocoa powder (if using). (You won‘t taste a chocolate flavor, but rather a richer mole-like flavor- so good!)
Add in your onions and saute for 3 minutes. Add the carrots, garlic and tomatoes (if using all 3) And saute for another 3-5 minutes.
Work in your tomato paste, followed by the chicken stock. Add your potatoes, half of the cilantro, additional salt and pepper and bring to a boil. Cover, and reduce heat to a simmer. Let simmer for 30 minutes or until your potatoes and other veggies are tender. Uncover and simmer for an additional 5 minutes while stirring, until most of your liquid is absorbed. Remove from heat.
Arrange your peppers into the baking dish of your choice. Using a spoon, scoop your filling into the peppers. I like to stuff them to the point of ‘overflowing,’ and you should have plenty of filling to do so.
Top the peppers generously with your cheese. Add to the oven for 15 minutes or until the cheese is bubbly.
Remove from the oven, top with the rest of the cilantro and let cool for about 5 minutes before serving.
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