Make no mistake, this chile rellenos dish is a labor of love.
There’s a lot of heart and soul put into every bite of Mexican food, and that puts it on par with the best of the best when it comes to culinary sophistication and taste combinations.
While the traditional Chiles Rellenos are delicious, I wanted something a little different, so I went online and looked up a few different versions that weren’t just peppers stuffed with oozing cheese.
When I came across an actual recipe that had been simmered and shredded, I decided to lighten things up by substituting ground turkey and adding raisins, nuts, and spices to truly make this a hearty meal.
The result was a crispy, cheesy, meat-filled pepper served with Mexican rice, black beans, and avocado as part of a delicious family meal.
The results may not win any 15-minute recipe prizes, but they are delicious and magnificent nonetheless—perfect for future Cinco de Mayo feasts!
Let’s get started on some chile rellenos, shall we?
- 225g of ground turkey, chicken, beef, or pork
- 225g of shredded monterey jack cheese
- 3 cloves of chopped garlic
- 1 small onion, diced
- ¼ cup of chopped raisins
- ¼ cup of chopped pecans
- ½ cup of plain tomato sauce
- 2 tablespoons of oil
- ½ teaspoon of chili powder
- ½ teaspoon of smoked paprika
- ¼ teaspoon of cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon of salt
- 7 to 8 cleaned whole poblano peppers
- 1 large onion, halved
- 8 plum tomatoes
- 6 cloves of garlic
- 1-2 serrano chilis
- 1 tablespoon of oil
- 1 handful of cilantro
- Salt and pepper
- 3 separated eggs
- 1 cup of flour
- 2-3 inches of canola oil in a deep skillet or saucepan
- Grease a skillet with 2 teaspoons of oil and cook the ground beef until it is no longer pink. Saute the onion and garlic until they are soft and translucent, about 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste and combine with the tomato sauce.
- Then proceed with the other preparations. Mix in the shredded cheese when the mixture has cooled.
PEPPERS AND SALSA:
- Using a broiler set to high, cook the peppers and onion on a sheet pan until they are charred on one side. Broil until completely browned on all sides. Closely monitor them! Remove the skins by covering them with a kitchen towel and letting them sit for a while.
- The charred onion, tomatoes, serrano chiles, garlic, and cilantro should be blended. Process the salsa until it reaches the desired smoothness or chunkiness.
- Toss 1 tablespoon of oil into a skillet and bring to a medium-high heat. Add the salsa to the pan and bring it to a boil. Adding salt and pepper to taste as well as cooking the salsa until the color changes from light pink to reddish-orange is recommended.
- Remove the skins of the poblano peppers with a paper towel or clean kitchen cloth now. Slice each pepper in half lengthwise, but keep the rest intact. Using a spoon, scrape out any extra seeds and membranes from the inside.
- Using toothpicks, secure the filling inside each pepper.
- 375 degrees Fahrenheit/190 degrees Celsius is the ideal temperature for frying.
- Whip the egg whites to soft peaks using an electric mixer set at high speed. Put the egg yolks one at a time into the mixer, and continue to beat for 3 minutes on medium speed.
- Once it coats the back of a wooden spoon with no dripping, the batter is ready to be used.
- Dip the peppers in the batter after being dredged in flour. Place the peppers with care in the heated oil. A spatula can be used to turn the chili over carefully when the bottom is golden brown. Fry until golden brown, about 3-4 minutes.
- Depending on the size of your skillet, you may be able to fry 1-2 peppers at a time, but it’s important not to overcrowd the pan so that you can easily flip the peppers without ruining the batter. It was one pepper at a time that we fried up.
- Serve your chile rellenos and salsa together, and enjoy!