Chiles Rellenos, one of my all time favorites. My inspiration for this dish was the delicious cheese I had received from the nice people at Cabot Cheese. Cheese stuffed rellenos are one of the most popular dishes when it comes to Mexican and Tex Mex recipes. For today’s blog post, I was anxious to try out the Smoky Bacon Cheddar Cheese in my relleno recipe. I have prepared many, many rellenos, big and small, baked and fried, you name it. But, I don’t think I have ever stuffed any with all cheddar cheese. Freezing the peppers after you stuff and bread them is one of the best tips I learned along the way. This will pretty much keep you cheese from leaking out while it bakes or fries. So, thanks to the wonderful farmers at Cabot Creamery Cooperative for this tasty twist on chiles rellenos.
Smoky Bacon Cheddar Chile Relleno
4 large roasted anaheim peppers
4 oz. smoky bacon cheddar
1/2 cup flour, salt and pepper
2 eggs, 1 tablespoon hot sauce
1 cup seasoned breadcrumbs
spray oil, or olive oil
4 large roma tomatoes, chopped
2 to 4 serranos, chopped
1/4 white onion
2 cloves garlic, sliced
salt and pepper to taste
pinch of oregano
Thinly sliced onion
To roast peppers in the oven, set the top rack 10 to 12 inches from broiler. Turn on high. Place peppers on baking sheet and cook under broiler for 6 to 8 minutes, turning as needed to blister the skins. Place in plastic bag or glass bowl and cover to steam. Let them cool.
1. Carefully peel the blistered skins off of the roasted green chiles. Cut a T shape up near the base of the pepper and remove the seeds and membranes as best you can. Careful not to tear the pepper too much when removing the membranes. If they tear, the freezing step will help keep them from opening up while cooking. Cut the cheese to fit inside the peppers, but making sure they will close.
2. Set up breading station. It’s best to use a shallow dish, such as a pie plate for breading. In one, add the flour, salt and pepper. In second dish, whisk eggs with hot sauce. In the third add the seasoned breadcrumbs. I actually used cornflake crumbs on this day.
3. Using both hands, dredge through flour, then into eggwash and finally coat with breadcrumbs. Use your hands to coat evenly. This is not my favorite job, but it’s the only way. Transfer peppers to a plate and freeze for 1 to 2 hours.
4. To cook peppers, you could shallow fry them until crisp and golden brown or you could bake them on a sprayed sheet pan in a preheated 425 degree oven for 15 to 18 minutes. If you bake them, spray the tops of peppers with oil before baking to crisp up the tops. I baked them on this day.
5. For salsa, add all ingredients, minus the oil to the blender. Add just enough water to help salsa blend easier. Blend until smooth. Pour into a skillet that has been preheated at medium with 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Cook the salsa for 6 to 8 minutes, taste for salt and pepper. Add warm salsa to serving plate and top with chile relleno. Garnish with avocado, onion and cilantro. Yields 4 servings.
Garnished with a Smoked and Grilled Pico de Gallo Salsa. Click onto picture to see full recipe.