Amy's dad said that this was the best thing he'd ever had at our house. That's high praise since he regularly refers to our kitchen as his "favorite restaurant," although we all know his favorite restaurant is Bari. But we'll take the praise where we can get it. This dish has two kinds of peppers and the option to add some hot sauce, so it was tailor-made for him.
That said, it is remarkable. The richness of the cheese is a foil for the smoky, spicy poblano, and the whipped egg whites give the whole thing an ethereal quality. Baking instead of frying this dish is a great way to make it just a touch healthier.
There are a few steps to this one, but none of them are difficult. Give this a shot. We think you'll love it!
Baked Chiles Rellenos
4 large poblano peppers
1-2 chipotle peppers (from a can)
1 14.5 ounce can diced fire-roasted tomatoes
3 eggs (separated)
1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
2 cups shredded Monterey Jack cheese
1/4 cup chopped green onion
1/2 teaspoon cumin
3 egg yolks
Sliced avocado, cilantro, and hot sauce (to garnish)
Roast the poblano peppers over the fire on your burner or under the broiler turning frequently until blackened on all sides. Set poblano peppers aside in a covered bowl until cooled. Gently rub each pepper with a paper towel until most of the char is removed. Using a paring knife, make a slit down one side of each pepper and pull the seeds out. Set aside.
In a blender, make the sauce by blending together the chipotle peppers and the can of tomatoes until smooth. Pour mixture into a medium saucepan over medium heat. Simmer until ready to serve.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. In a large bowl, whisk the egg whites and the cream of tartar until stiff peaks form. Set aside in the fridge.
In a medium bowl, combine the cheese, onion, cumin, and egg yolks. Stuff each of the poblanos with 1/4 of the mixture. Remove the egg whites from the fridge.
Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Holding each pepper by the stem, drag each pepper through the egg whites and place onto the parchment-lined baking sheet. Using a spoon, add the remaining egg whites to the top of the peppers.
Bake for 20 minutes of until golden brown. Serve topped with the chipotle and tomato sauce, avocado, cilantro, and hot sauce. This dish goes great with rice and beans.
(Makes 4 peppers. Serves 2.)