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SNewman004

Stuffed Poblano Pepper

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I am having trouble getting my poblano to keep its shape. I have charred the outside over a flame, then breaded with Panko and deep fried. I then cut open one side and stuff with the filling, cover with fundito and toast the top. It tastes amazing but looks terrible on the plate. Help!

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I roast them and then put them in a container to steam until they're cool enough to handle. Then I peel and seed. Then I stuff them and batter and fry or bake them. 

 

I've never tried to stuff them after cooking. 

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I've not heard of post-frying stuffing.  

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Making really good chiles rellenos is not easy. I never heard of stuffing after frying--how would you get the cheese to melt? Since you are doing a twice-cooking of a fairly delicate vegetable and need it to retain structure, a few things can help.

 

The reason to use poblanos and not other chiles is, of course, because they have thicker flesh to begin with. Pick peppers that are structurally sound and flattish or blade shaped and seem hefty. Also they should have strong stems long enough to grab. Roast the chiles as quickly as possible, so the skin chars and lends itself to easy peeling but so the flesh doesn't overcook or lose shape. Use a cheese that melts well and fast. 

 

I learned to slit the chiles after peeling, then stuff before dipping into batter and frying. You can use a grapefruit spoon or needle nose scissors to get out the main seed cluster. Since poblanos are typically not overly hot, I wouldn't worry too much about scraping out every last  seed. The less fussing the better. Another possible technique is to slit and seed before roasting. It is possible that this affects the roasting and makes the flesh more susceptible to overcooking on this first pass, but you might have to experiment to see which works best for you. It would certainly be easier to get the seeds out without causing tearing.

 

That said, I admit that I never really mastered this dish and gave up before practice made perfect.

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Posted (edited)
23 minutes ago, Katie Meadow said:

 

That said, I admit that I never really mastered this dish and gave up before practice made perfect.

True words.  A lot of work.  However, every time we can eat in a Hispanic-type restaurant which serves them...that's my dish.   And in east central Ontario...there ain't none really nohow.   

 

I will add that in the city nearest to us, only one store carries Poblanos and they are noted as 'hot' peppers, and you can't buy tomatillos at all.  


Edited by Darienne (log)
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I'm not familiar with breading and frying chiles before stuffing them. However, I have been making chiles rellenos for a long time and have developed a pretty good method. After reading a recipe for chiles rellenos by Rick Bayless, I switched from charring the poblanos over a gas burner or under the broiler to frying them in very hot oil to remove the skin. I find that you lose less of the flesh and you can better control how firm the chiles remain. If you fry them just until the skin starts to blister and blacken, the chiles will be firm enough to keep their shape. They're really easy to stuff like that, but they're not quite done enough for my taste; they're still a little tough even after battering and frying. I prefer to cook them longer, until the skin is all dark brown to black and the chiles are just barely starting to collapse a bit. After cooling, you can rub the skins pretty easily with a paper towel. 

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On 8/29/2017 at 3:57 PM, JAZ said:

I'm not familiar with breading and frying chiles before stuffing them. However, I have been making chiles rellenos for a long time and have developed a pretty good method. After reading a recipe for chiles rellenos by Rick Bayless, I switched from charring the poblanos over a gas burner or under the broiler to frying them in very hot oil to remove the skin. I find that you lose less of the flesh and you can better control how firm the chiles remain. If you fry them just until the skin starts to blister and blacken, the chiles will be firm enough to keep their shape. They're really easy to stuff like that, but they're not quite done enough for my taste; they're still a little tough even after battering and frying. I prefer to cook them longer, until the skin is all dark brown to black and the chiles are just barely starting to collapse a bit. After cooling, you can rub the skins pretty easily with a paper towel. 

THanks for this info.  It is looking like i will have a bumper fall crop of poblanos and love chili rellenos and will follow your directions on this.  Now as to the stuffing, does it have to be just cheese?  I am thinking something along the lines of a seafood and cheese.  

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55 minutes ago, joiei said:

THanks for this info.  It is looking like i will have a bumper fall crop of poblanos and love chili rellenos and will follow your directions on this.  Now as to the stuffing, does it have to be just cheese?  I am thinking something along the lines of a seafood and cheese.  

 

I sometimes use plain cheese, but more often mix in cooked chopped shrimp or chicken. Crabmeat would be good too. My favorite addition lately is chorizo, browned and cooled (so it doesn't melt the cheese). If you're interested, here's the complete recipe I've been using: chiles rellenos.

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This is unconventional and does not involve the egg white batter or skinning of the peppers before stuffing. They aren't even fried, but I based my favorite version on a Tex Mex place that used to be good, but has really declined over many years.

 

I'm in the camp that can chow down on raw peppers as long as they aren't too hot happily. I can't imagine a pepper being tough, especially after having been peeled with heat and then fried or baked. I know I'm bucking tradition, though, and many, many people prefer the peeled and partially precooked method.

 

I don't peel bell peppers when I stuff them or precook them in any way, but rather stuff them raw and then bake. That is what I do with Anaheims, and that's the way Los Tres Magueyes restuarant's product sold as "chili relleno" is made. There's is just the slit unpeeled pepper with seeds stuffed with precooked, seasoned ground beef and topped with white cheese and baked. I actually like these better than the traditional chili rellenos, as first I don't care for poblanos and second the traditional egg batter kind can be pretty greasy. Add that grease to the amount of solid cheese the typical poblano can hold, and it turns into a very heavy dish to me.

 

I'm going to make some Hatch stuffed with precooked ground meat and onion and topped with cheese soon. The Hatch, though, I will carefully deseed because mine are pretty durn hot. I tried making these with raw meat one time, but it was dense and not too good, like a meat loaf without a proper panade. I'll have to "bake" mine in the Dutch oven or microwave this time, but especially the Dutch oven should work fine. 

 

Yeah, seafood and cheese would make a great filling, I think! I like to lighten up my cheese and onion enchiladas with a little grated, salted and drained zucchini, and I think that would not go awry with chili rellenos either. I make Garden Stuffed Peppers from my old "Better Homes and Gardens Cook Book". This is bells stuffed with baby lima beans, onions, corn tomatoes, and I've added a little oregano and topped it with cheddar cheese over the years. I'll bet a few black beans, onions, corn and tomatoes with cooked ground meat or seafood and/or cheese would make a respectable chili relleno too. Not strictly traditional, of course, but I bet it would be delicious.

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11 hours ago, Thanks for the Crepes said:

That is what I do with Anaheims, and that's the way Los Tres Magueyes restuarant's product sold as "chili relleno" is made. There's is just the slit unpeeled pepper with seeds stuffed with precooked, seasoned ground beef and topped with white cheese and baked.

We can't get Anaheims in the far frozen north outside of Toronto (if they can get them in Toronto??? I don't know), but I could do this with Poblanos except that I would seed them first.   Every now and then, Poblanos are hotter than expected.   I can buy Poblanos in my near-by city.  In one grocery store only.  They are called "Hot Peppers' there.  I told them...but they didn't care.   They are still hot peppers.

 

Or I could stuff my own version of Picadillo into them.  (I call it Picadillo de la Cabana...can't make a tilde.  No, don't tell me how.  I live in Cavan Township, hence the name.  Silly.  I know, but I don't care.  It's a combination of  Elisabeth  Lambert Ortiz's "Picadillo" and "Picadillo de la costa".  The book, The Complete Book of Mexican Cooking, 1967, is in utter tatters)   Then top them with Mozzarella with Hot Peppers.  Can't ever find Pepperjack.  Or Monterey Jack if I can find it.   I don't live in a cosmopolitan area.  

 

I'm going to do it.  Thanks, TFTC.
 

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On 8/29/2017 at 8:34 AM, SNewman004 said:

I then cut open one side and stuff with the filling, cover with fundito and toast the top. It tastes amazing but looks terrible on the plate

@Darienne is right, therein lies your problem. As one who cooked in a Mexican restaurant, and has made and eaten way more than my share, I can tell you that the only way to make these is to stuff them first. The less you handle them after they are roasted, the better the appearance. It doesn't matter if you deep fry them or bake them in the oven.

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Some of the best chili rellenos that I ever ate were the ones we used to make in the Mexican restaurant where I worked. They had abalone in the filling. The way we made them was this. We first took a small strip of Monterey Jack cheese and wrapped the thin pieces of abalone around it. The pepper was left whole and the filling was put in through the top. We then beat one egg, poured it onto the grill and spread it out into a thin circle. Before the egg was completely set we placed the pepper in the middle and folded both sides over. We placed it onto the plate with rice and refried beans and smothered the chile relleno with fresh grated cheddar cheese. It was then placed into a 500 degree oven for 5 to 6 minutes until it the egg was puffy and the cheese was melted. I still do that to this day but I use a large non-stick egg pan to do the egg. It's rather unorthodox but that was how the owner's grandmother had taught him to do it and it's a lot less messy then dipping and frying in hot oil and it's probably a lot healthier.

I have done this with large shrimp. First I score the underside of the shrimp so that it won't curl, then I butterfly it and put the cheese inside. The heat of the 500-degree oven is enough to cook the shrimp perfectly.


Edited by Tropicalsenior Typo (log)
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I forgot to mention that it is important to season the egg with salt and pepper. It makes a world of difference in the flavor.

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1 hour ago, Tropicalsenior said:

Some of the best chili rellenos that I ever ate were the ones we used to make in the Mexican restaurant where I worked. They had abalone in the filling. The way we made them was this. We first took a small strip of Monterey Jack cheese and wrapped the thin pieces of abalone around it. The pepper was left whole and the filling was put in through the top. We then beat one egg, poured it onto the grill and spread it out into a thin circle. Before the egg was completely set we placed the pepper in the middle and folded both sides over. We placed it onto the plate with rice and refried beans and smothered the chile relleno with fresh grated cheddar cheese. It was then placed into a 500 degree oven for 5 to 6 minutes until it the egg was puffy and the cheese was melted. I still do that to this day but I use a large non-stick egg pan to do the egg. It's rather unorthodox but that was how the owner's grandmother had taught him to do it and it's a lot less messy then dipping and frying in hot oil and it's probably a lot healthier.

I have done this with large shrimp. First I score the underside of the shrimp so that it won't curl, then I butterfly it and put the cheese inside. The heat of the 500-degree oven is enough to cook the shrimp perfectly.

 

 

What kind of peppers do you use for this? You cut the stem end off and scoop out the seeds and membranes before filling? Was the abalone raw? Not that I'll be able to get abalone, but I might think of a suitable substitute that would work. You already said the shrimp was cooked from raw, so I'm assuming the abalone was too, but just in case someone who can actually get abalone reads this, it might me helpful. Also maybe to folks like me thinking of maybe sliced clam as a substitute.

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40 minutes ago, Thanks for the Crepes said:

What kind of peppers do you use for this?

We used Anaheim peppers, roasted and peeled and we had a little scoop that took out the seeds. The Abalone was raw. It's one of those things that needs very little cooking. The heat from wrapping with the egg and the time in the extremely hot oven was enough to cook it through. I'm not sure that abalone is even available now and if it was I know that I couldn't afford it even if I could get it here. I'm not sure about the flavor or the texture of the clam but possibly a thin slice of tuna or mahi mahi might work. Probably for the flavor and the texture, I would go for the mahi-mahi. Squid or octopus would also be an option.

We used the Anaheim because they were the only thing available to us at that time, but this would be delicious with Poblanos.


Edited by Tropicalsenior Addition (log)
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17 minutes ago, Tropicalsenior said:

We used Anaheim peppers

 

Love Anaheims! They are my favorite pepper to stuff, and just don't care for poblanos. I used a grapefruit spoon to get the seeds and membranes out of my Hatch last night. It was good stuffed with four ounces of ground chuck, precooked with about as much minced white onion, a mild but flavorful red chili powder, salt and black pepper and topped with Colby-Jack. I still didn't like it as much as my preferred Anaheims for this application, but it was very good. I was amazed at how much stuffing this pepper as long as my dinner plate held and had slit and deseeded another pepper, but put it back in the fridge after realizing I had enough filling to slightly overstuff one or significantly understuff two.

 

I served the stuffed Hatch with delicata squash, refried beans from the freezer with provolone cheese and a flour tortilla. This was my first experience with delicata squash, and I'm always excited about a new experience. Sadly though, I'm not enamored with delicata. It has a texture like kabocha to me. Dry and mealy, even with the butter I put on it. I'll eat the other one I bought, but if it's not a lot better, I think I'll spend my time with spaghetti or butternut squash from now on.

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Just now, Thanks for the Crepes said:

 

Love Anaheims! They are my favorite pepper to stuff, and just don't care for poblanos. I used a grapefruit spoon to get the seeds and membranes out of my Hatch last night. It was good stuffed with four ounces of ground chuck, precooked with about as much minced white onion, a mild but flavorful red chili powder, salt and black pepper and topped with Colby-Jack. I still didn't like it as much as my preferred Anaheims for this application, but it was very good.

I love any kind of mild pepper but I do think that poblano is my favorite. Once in a while we'd find them here but it's few and far between. However, my housemate is allergic to peppers and to onions and to garlic so it makes for interesting cooking.

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34 minutes ago, Tropicalsenior said:

I love any kind of mild pepper but I do think that poblano is my favorite. Once in a while we'd find them here but it's few and far between. However, my housemate is allergic to peppers and to onions and to garlic so it makes for interesting cooking.

 

Yeah, I know what you mean about "interesting" cooking. My husband could not take more than a very mild amount of pepper heat, which I enjoy. That would be really challenging not to cook with onions and garlic, though. They are a staple around here. The Indian culture, at least a segment of them, do not eat onions and garlic. Instead they use asafoetida to replace it. If you can get that in Costa Rica, it might be worth trying?

 

@Lisa Shock, in the wiki link above for asafoetida, they state that is is thought to be in the same genus as sylphium, so it might interest you?

 

I'm pretty sure I have eaten asafoetida in the sambar I like to ladle over the fluffy idly from the Southern Indian vegetarian buffet at Udipi Cafe in Cary. It declares that it's is onion and garlic free on the label above the pot. Pretty sure I could buy it at Patel Brothers, too, but I love onions and garlic, so why would I? Also, perhaps I am being language prejudiced, but what does this sound like to you? (Sounds like "smells like ass" and a fetid one, to me.) Not. Very. Appetizing. xD Unfortunate name, but if it is in this sambar I've eaten, the name has nothing to do with how it really tastes. I love the sambar with the idly.

 

 

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Thanks, TftC, I do know a bit about asafoetida. I have a friend I have known since my early 20s who practices an Indian religion where it is eaten instead of onions and garlic, etc. It is interesting that the ancients thought of it as a low-quality replacement for silphium. But, yeah, anything possibly in the same species group is very interesting. -Especially with the hybrid theory.

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Thank you everyone for your feedback! Obviously I'm not making traditional Chili Rellenos, just trying to make a decent dish with some great flavors! It tastes great, but the plating I cannot take to the next level for some reason. Any suggestions on plating? It tastes delicious covered in fundito but the presentation stinks!

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I also used a few poblano peppers from a local farmer that were amazing! Now all I'm getting are waxy, tasteless peppers from Sysco and the breading isn't staying on them either. We are probably pulling the dish until it's fixed...or until next season.


Edited by SNewman004 (log)

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I wrote a recipe for chiles rellenos for RecipeGullet many months ago, titled "My Spanish Teacher's Chiles Rellenos." Stuffed with queso fresco, battered and fried and then cooked to finish in a thin tomato  broth that then is used as a sauce with a bed of white rice. Rub the poblanos (or anaheims) lightly with oil before you toast them over the grill or gas flame--that pops the skin off much faster and you're less likely to overcook the flesh. Rub a little flour on the filled chiles before dipping them in the batter--the batter seems to adhere better that way. Separate the eggs and fold the beaten whites into the batter to lighten it.

 

Rick Bayliss has a wonderful recipe for chiles rellenos with a picadillo made with salt cod--page 360 in Mexican Kitchen. I've also eaten them stuffed with shrimp and crab (and cheese, though as a rule I don't care for fish and cheese together). And of course there's Chiles en Nogado, the famous dish celebrating Mexican independence in the fall when the new walnut crop is ready and the pomegranates are ripe. These are stuffed with picadillo, not cheese, and are served at room temperature (as is the Bayliss dish).

 

Hope this helps--Nancy in Pátzcuaro

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On 10/9/2017 at 12:55 PM, Nancy in Pátzcuaro said:

I wrote a recipe for chiles rellenos for RecipeGullet many months ago, titled "My Spanish Teacher's Chiles Rellenos." 

...

Hope this helps--Nancy in Pátzcuaro

 

Here is the recipe she posted.

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Thanks, Smithy, for rounding up that post. Reading it again made me hungry for those chiles rellenos. Got to go to the mercado for the ingredients!

 

Nancy in Pátzcuaro

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Thanks for this, my poblanos in the garden are coming along nicely.  The tips will definitely be adhered to.  The last time I had Chilis in Nogado was with  moosnsqrl in Kansas City.  

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