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Nancy in Pátzcuaro

My Spanish Teacher's Chiles Rellenos

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This recipe is a little labor intensive, but the results are definitely worth it. This is less a recipe than a technique, and so quantities are not specified.

 

Olive or vegetable oil

Chiles poblanos, skinned and seeds removed without making a big hole

Queso fresco, cut into thick chunks to tuck into the chiles

Eggs,separated

Flour

Salt and pepper to taste

Good ripe tomatoes, or canned if the market has let you down

White onion

Garlic

Dried oregano

Chicken broth

 

Rub the chiles with a light coating of oil, which makes them blister faster and doesn't overcook the flesh. Put under a broiler or turn over a gas cooktop until blistered and blackened. Pop into a plastic bag to steam and then peel and discard the seeds while trying not to make a big slit in the chile. I use a scissors to snip off the seed thing below the stem. Leave the stem on if you can--it will come in handy later.

 

Put about an inch of oil in a skillet and heat to medium high. Beat the egg whites until stiff, fold in the yolks and enough flour to make a fairly loose batter. Try not to deflate the egg whites too much. Put some flour on a plate. Stuff each chile with a log of the cheese, roll in the flour and then dip into the batter. Try to keep the opening overlapped before you roll in the flour. It will keep the cheese inside a little better.

 

Fry the chiles until both sides are golden brown and delicious (thank you Alton Brown) and remove to a plate lined with paper towels. You can use the stem to turn the chiles, but a spoon also works.

 

If using fresh tomatoes, chop roughly and put in a food processor bowl. Roughly chop the white onion and garlic and add the oregano to the food processor. Buzz together until smooth. If using canned tomatoes, just dump them into the food processor and then add the onion, garlic, and oregano.

 

Heat oil in a skillet and fry the sauce for a few minutes to thicken it, and then add the chicken broth. You are aiming for something runnier than you want for the final sauce. Cook the sauce until there's no taste of raw onion.

 

Gently slip the chiles into the broth. Cover and simmer for 20 minutes, and then serve on white rice. You can add a salad or simple vegetable to the plate.

 

Again, I apologize for the vague ingredient list. I was not given specific amounts by Alicia, because this is less a recipe than a technique, which I think is very straightforward. I've made this several times and I recommend breaking up the tasks, like roasting the chiles the day before. And if it's possible, this is almost better the next day.

 

Nancy in Pátzcuaro

 

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