Chili Relleno is one of my most favorite Mexican dishes, and they are so easy to make here in Sayulita, as the poblano peppers are available at almost every tienda in town. The traditional chili relleno is a stuffed pepper that is breaded, deep fried, and smothered in a red sauce. My friend Susana was here last week, and she introduced me to her version; it is a deconstructed chili relleno with a lovely soufflé topping and a delicious homemade salsa verde. I just knew that I had to share this recipe with you today!
INGREDIENTS FOR SALSA VERDE:
1 ¼ lb. tomatillos or green tomatoes
½ of one small white onion
4 serrano chiles
4 cloves of garlic
12 sprigs of cilantro
2 tbsp. cooking oil
1 ½ tsp. of salt, to taste
INSTRUCTIONS FOR SALSA VERDE:
- Remove the papery husks from the tomatillos and rinse to remove the sticky residue.
- Quarter the onion.
- Add all of the ingredients except the cilantro and salt to a large pot, and cover with water.
- Bring the water and ingredients to a boil, and then simmer for 10 minutes.
- Blend the cooked ingredients and the cilantro with the cooking water until smooth, about 30 seconds.
- Heat 2 tablespoons of cooking oil in the pot.
- Pour the blended salsa back into the pot with the hot cooking oil.
- Reduce the heat and simmer for 20 minutes until reduced & thickened
- Add the salt, and adjust if necessary
INGREDIENTS & INSTRUCTIONS FOR THE CHILES:
- Take 4-6 large poblano chilies and slice them in half horizontally
- Remove the seeds & membrane; rub with olive oil & roast at 400 degrees until tender. (*Alternatively you can char the poblano over a gas flame.)
- Put the roasted/charred chilies into a small bowl and cover tightly. Let sit for ½ hour.
- Peel off the skins and set aside.
- Grate ½-1 lb. of cheese. (*My favorite cheese to use is Manchego de cabra, or goat Manchego. You can also use the queso de Cheddar that most tiendas in Sayulita carry.)
- Spread a thin layer of your homemade salsa verde; then spread out ½ of the skinned poblano peppers to make a layer; top it with the grated cheese, then sprinkle with a bit of the salsa.
- Continue making a second layer, then prepare the soufflé.
INGREDIENTS & INSTRUCTIONS FOR SOUFFLÉ:
- With 4 eggs, separate the yolks from the whites into separate bowls.
- Beat yolks until thick.
- Add 2 Tbl of flour and whisk until well combined.
- Add cream to thin until it becomes the consistency of a white sauce.
- Add powdered cumin & garlic to taste; approximately 1 tsp of each.
- Beat the egg whites until stiff, and then fold into the white sauce.
- Layer the soufflé over Rellenos.
- Sprinkle the top with a bit of fresh, chopped cilantro.
- Bake until the soufflé has puffed & is golden brown.
Muy Delicioso! This will certainly impress your friends at your next Sayulita dinner party. Serve this dish with a lovely green salad and a roasted vegetable. Everyone I have served this to has loved it and has asked for the recipe.
Stay tuned for my next column!
If you have any questions, comments or would like to order appetizers or a decadent dessert, please contact me on my Sayulita Life webpage.
Written by: Karina Shecter