Saturday, July 7, 2012

Poblanos Stuffed with Cheddar and Chicken

You say Poblano, I say Pasilla (Pah-SEE-YA).   They are one in the same, I recently discovered--at least, in California grocery stores.  (I found a blogger who clears up the confusion here.)  I love Mexican food, but I can't handle really a lot of spicy heat.  Poblano peppers are perfect, because they are rather mild once they are cooked.

My inspiration to make this recipe comes from "Fine Cooking."  The original recipe boasts that it's a quick (and great) way to use leftover chicken.  I didn't have any, and so I decided to make my own shredded chicken.  I chose chicken thighs, because they are a good price.  For flavor I added bay leaves, whole peppercorns and my homemade Mexican spice (you could use taco seasoning).  If you have a Trader Joe's near you, I like these reduced-sodium chicken flavor concentrates (no MSG).  You could use plain water, though.
I let the chicken simmer for about an hour, let it cook enough to pull apart and shred.  I saved the cooking broth. Done.

I cooked one cup of brown rice, using the chicken broth.  Mmmm, good.  (Set aside.)

Slit the chiles from stem to tip and set on the baking sheet. Broil, turning every few minutes, until blackened all over, 5 to 8 minutes. Let cool slightly, peel off the skins, and cut out the seed cores, leaving the stems on. Rather than turning the chiles inside out, a spoon cleaned out any remaining seeds.

The fresh tomato sauce was the best part of this recipe, IMO. It was so good, that I wish I had doubled it-- so, take my advice!

You need fresh cilantro.  If you hate cilantro, leave it out (or use parsley). 

I used fresh Roma  tomatoes, onion, garlic, oregano, cumin, cinnamon, and 1/2 tsp. salt ...

..and pureed it in a food processor. 

Remove the pan from the heat. Stir in the chicken and rice, and then 1 cup of the cheese, the cilantro, and the lime juice.
Season to taste with salt.  Delicious! 

Divide the filling among the peppers, wrapping the sides of the peppers up and around the filling, some of which will still be exposed.

Broil the peppers until the cheese is melting and the top is beginning to brown, about 4 minutes.
Top with the remaining 1 cup cheese and broil until the cheese is completely melted, about 2 minutes.

TASTING NOTES:  Because I made my own shredded chicken, this took about 2 hours to prepare.  Using leftover chicken and/or rice would definitely be a time saver. On the other hand, the shredded chicken was moist and flavorful.  The leftover filling for the stuffed peppers can be used to make burritos or even enchiladas.  As for the tomato sauce, I would make this part of the recipe again and again.  It was fresh tasting, and perfectly seasoned. The cinnamon was subtle, and the peppers weren't over-the-top hot. Love.  I served this recipe with black beans.  Muy Bueno.  I can see making this as a vegetarian dinner, by omitting the  chicken, and using black beans and rice as the stuffing.   I will, definitely, make this again.

 A printable recipe card is at the end of this post.


Pin It


Sam @ My Carolina Kitchen said...

I wish I could reach in the screen and grab all of that cheesy goodness. And it's breakfast time, what am I thinking!

Have a great weekend.

Joan Nova said...

Looks delicious Debby. And, I agree - poblano is the perfect middle of-the-road pepper and my choice too.

Kate said...

I have been looking at the stuffed poblano recipes that keep popping up. I must join in. (Thanks for clearing up the pasilla/poblano mystery!)

Karen said...

I love stuffed chilis and it's been way too long since I've done it. These look wonderful!

Slice of Southern said...

Oh I LOVE this recipe! I'd love for you to share this on my linky party Southern Sundays going on right now. Hope to see you there!

Introverted Art said...

Debbie, this looks so yummy. I will try this recipe for sure.

Big Dude said...

This looks incredibly delicious and my poblanos will soon be big enough to use.

Joanne said...

I had no idea poblanos and pasillas were the same things either! Crazy. This filling sounds so tasty!

TKW said...

Guess who has leftover chicken sitting around? Now I need to head out to the store for poblanos. Looks divine!

The Short (dis)Order Cook said...

It's funny. I always see the fresh peppers sold as poblanos, but the dried ones sold as pasillas.

This looks so delicious. I will definitely have to try this. The chicken filling would make a great taco too!

Cynthia L. said...

I love poblano peppers. One of my favorite foods to order in a Mexcian food retaurant is Chile Rellenos. This sounds like a relleno, only better. I will have this on my list of things to try!

bellini said...

You make these look so tempting!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!