On A Quest For The Perfect Chili Relleno

Stuffed chilies or Chili Rellenos are on every menu of every Mexican restaurant I wander into, however something usually is just not right with their authentic version. I won't complain about their stuffings of cheeses and meats but have you noticed that most places make a relleno with a rubbery like coating of fluffy egg batter topped with a runny red or green enchilada sauce...no entiendo!!!

My special version has a crispy exterior coating that explodes with a crunch in your mouth along with a savory, spicy, and thick Ranchero sauce on top! Can you spot the extra ingredient that makes my batter one of a kind? Easy and delicious...why not resort to making your own!

How to make a Perfect Chili Relleno:
Serves 4/ 10 Minute Prep Time/15 Minute Cook Time
4 Poblano peppers
4 ounces (cut into 1 oz sticks or chunks) Monterrey Jack cheese (have extra to shred for garnish)
1 cup flour
3/4 cup corn meal
1 ts baking powder
1/2 ts salt
1 cup milk
2 eggs, slightly beaten
Canola oil for frying
1 (12 oz) jar of your favorite chunky salsa
1/2 ts each of cumin, garlic powder, oregano

1. Lay peppers in a large skillet (preferably an iron skillet), turn stove top on medium high, and let peppers char on all sides until crusty, bubbly, and black. Remove from heat and cool.
2. After peppers are cool, carefully peel off charred skin. After peeling, carefully cut a 2-3 inch slit into the top of each pepper right below the stem. With your fingers, carefully remove the seeds.
3. Cut the Monterey Jack cheese into sticks or chunks and ease these pieces equally into peppers making sure you are able to close the pepper. Set aside. Prepare oil and batter.
4. Pour about 1 1/2 inches of oil into a skillet and heat to 350 degrees F.
5. Prepare the batter by combining the flour, cornmeal, baking powder, and salt into a medium bowl. In another bowl, blend the milk and eggs. Then whisk into the dry mixture.
6 Carefully lay the cheese stuffed peppers into the batter and spoon mixture on all sides.
7. Fry on both sides until golden brown. Drain on paper towel. Prepare topping.
8. In a skillet heat the salsa along with the cumin, garlic powder, and oregano until hot and bubbly. Pour over the peppers and top with some shredded Monterey Jack cheese.


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