Stuffed Poblano Peppers

I saw this made on an episode of “Chopped” recently and told Ivor that he needed to make it for me. Aaron Sanchez, one of the judges, said it was “as good as mama makes it”. Now that is a huge compliment coming from a Mexican food authority. Anyway, I’m not sure how it happened, but I’ve become a big fan of peppers recently. Typical stuffed bell peppers though, for some reason, don’t appeal to me. But the stuffed poblano pepper I saw on “Chopped” made my mouth water and I decided I needed to have it. And so, Ivor made it.

stuffed poblano

Right??

You know you want that pepper.

In our version we used Spanish Chorizo (sausage), brown rice, bell peppers, serrano chiles, and onion for the filling. You may see melted monterey jack or cheddar cheese used on a lot of stuffed poblanos, but we decided to go with a more authentic Mexican cheese, Cotija. Cotija is crumbly like Feta and it doesn’t really melt. It just adds a really nice texture to the dish, and of course, amazing flavor.

This is right up there in my “top favorite dishes that Ivor has made”. The flavors were sooooo good. It had a nice kick to it (I used to hate spicy food, now I love it). And if you need one more reason to try this yourself:

gwen eating peppers

That’s my daughter, a 17-month old toddler, eating the filling (which had peppers in it) like it’s nothing. The girl knows good food when she sees it.

Let me know if you want the recipe. It was really simple and fairly quick to make- everyone’s favorite kind of meal, right? But also very tasty.

 

“Food is essential to life, therefore, make it good.”

– S. Truett Cathy (founder of Chic-Fil-A, RIP)

 

“The best meal isn’t about the food, it’s about the people you share it with…hospitality is the best sauce.”

-Alton Brown (the man)

 

So go make this delicious stuffed pepper and share it with someone you love 🙂

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It’s important to note that when we cook, and particularly with this meal, we do so to make leftovers.  We then use those leftovers in other ways.  It’s a way for us to be money and time efficient but not get bored with the food we eat.  With this dish, we had a lot of left over filling; and 1 full leftover stuffed poblano.  I ate the stuffed poblano, itself, for lunch the next day; Ivor ate some of the filling with tortilla chips after his gig on Saturday night, then made breakfast burritos with the rest of it on Sunday.

Ingredients:

*Preheat your oven to 400*

2-6 Poblano Peppers (it’s enough stuffing to fill 6)
1 cup Brown rice
1 pound Spanish Chorizo (or Andouille sausage)
1/2 of a yellow Onion (finely chopped)
Serrano Chiles (Jalapeno or Habanero will work too) – as many or as few as you want, depending on your preferred spice level (finely chopped)
1 red, and 1 green bell pepper (roughly chopped – dime sized pieces are ok)
1 anaheim pepper (roughly chopped, like the bell peppers)
Cotija Cheese  (or Queso Fresco)

(is your oven preheated to 400?)

1. Start making the rice if you haven’t already done so. You can make the rice ahead of time; far ahead of time if you want.  One of the things we do is that I’ll make the rice during one of Gwen’s naps.  That way it’s ready for Ivor when he gets home from work.

2. If the sausage isn’t ground, you’ll want to dice it up pretty small.  It doesn’t need to be pretty; but you don’t want big chunks.

3. Place whole poblanos on a baking sheet and put them in the oven for 10 mins. While they’re in the oven, start frying the sausage in a frying pan. Let it brown, it should take about 10 minutes.  The key here is to render out some of the fat and get the meat to start browning.  This is your only chance to add any real texture to the dish unless you’re going to use raw peppers.

4. After 10 minutes, take the poblanos out of the oven and let them cool a bit.  You’ll need to handle and cut them, but they’re going to go back in the oven later, so I’d just let them sit on the tray, out of the heat.

5. Add onions, chiles, anaheim and bell peppers to the pan (with the sausage), and cook until they are soft; then add the rice.  Stir to incorporate.  You can use as much or as little of the rice as you want.  We use most of the rice; but leave enough for a serving to eat with leftovers later.

6. Once the filling is finished, slice the tops off of the poblanos, and slice down one of the sides, to open it up.  Remove the seeds and membranes with a spoon; then stuff them with the filling.  Break off some cotija and sprinkle on top.  Put them back in the oven for another 10 minutes.

Enjoy!

If you’ve made it extra spicy, serve with a glass of milk 🙂

*Note: if you have a gas stove  you can put a nice char on the poblanos first, before stuffing, for extra flavor and texture!