What’s the first thing that comes to mind when you here “Chiles Rellenos” ? I experience the same vision of my Mom standing over a hot comal, the sounds of chiles poblanos crackling and popping. And the aroma…that aroma is unmistakable. Every time I roast poblanos on the stove top, it takes me right back to that moment in time. Chiles rellenos, just like jalapeño poppers have evolved since becoming so popular. They are served simply stuffed with cheese, to my most favorite, lump crab meat! The most well known relleno is the one that comes filled with cheese, coated in an egg batter and served with a simple, but fresh tomato sauce. You can find this version at most good Mexican restaurants. The relleno I grew up loving was the one my Mom prepared filled with beef picadillo con papas. It was a simple ground beef with diced potatoes that she would fry separately and then add in to the picadillo along with a freshly blended tomato sauce. It is still my favorite and one of those comfort foods I enjoy. My latest recipe for rellenos I prepared on my charcoal grill. I prepared a variation of my Mom’s recipe for albondigas (meatballs) that are mixed with rice and spices to fill the poblanos. I also knew that bacon would be involved somehow, lol!! I found some beef bacon on my last trip to the market and I just had to try it out. Bacon Wrapped Rellenos on the Grill!
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon pepper
½ teaspoon smoked paprika
½ teaspoon mexican oregano, crushed
¼ teaspoon all spice
½ cup white onion, diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 jalapeño, minced
1 cup cooked steamed rice, white or brown
1/3 cup cilantro chopped
6 medium roasted poblano peppers,peeled and seeds removed
12 ounces beef or pork bacon (I found a wide sliced beef bacon that worked well for this recipe)
Tips~Roast poblanos on the grill, direct flame, in the oven or on a stove top comal just until skins blister. Transfer to a plastic storage bag until cool. Peel off blistered skins before filling.
In a large bowl, combine the beef with the spices and set aside.
Saute the onions, garlic and jalapeño in 1 to 2 tablespoon of olive oil for 5 to 7 minutes. Let cool.
To the beef, add the onion mixture, rice, cilantro and egg. Stir well to combine.
Slice a opening near the base of the roasted peppers and remove the seeds. Fill the peppers with beef mixture, but do not over stuff. Divide the bacon and wrap all the peppers. Transfer to plate and chill for at least one hour.
After an hour, prepare your grill for indirect heat and heat to at least 350 degrees. Place the peppers in pan safe for the grill and place on the indirect heat side. Close lid and cook for 30 minutes.
After 30 minutes, you could add a couple of chunks of apple or cherry wood directly to the fire if you wanted a light smoke flavor added to the rellenos. Rotate the peppers and cook for another 30 minutes, lid closed. If using a basting sauce, open lid and brush peppers evenly. Close lid and cook for another 10 to 15 minutes. Remove from heat and let stand for 10 minutes before serving. Yields 6 servings.
More Chiles Rellenos~Here a few of my favorite relleno recipes I have prepared and developed . Buen Provecho! To see more traditional chile relleno recipes, click RELLENO
Shrimp Stuffed Chile Relleno
For Warm Salsa
- 2 beefsteak tomatoes diced
- 4 to matillos diced
- 2 shallots minced
- 2 serrano peppers minced
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- 1 teaspoon oregano
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- juice of 2 key limes
- 1 1/2 teaspoons of salt
- 1/2 teaspoon pepper
- olive oil
Marinade for Serrano Shrimp
- 2 serrano peppers
- 4 cloves garlic
- 1 tablespoon fresh oregano
- 1 tablespoon fresh lemon thyme
- Juice of 2 key limes
- Salt and pepper
- Olive oil
"For Chile Relleno"
- 4 large poblano peppers
- 2 cups shredded mozzarella
- Start by making the marinade for shrimp. Roughly chop, the serrano peppers, garlic,oregano and thyme. Transfer to the blender, add lime juice,1/4 cup olive oil, 1teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper. Blend until smooth, taste for salt. In a glass bowl, combine shrimp and marinade, stir well to combine, cover and refrigerate until ready to use.
- Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Lay the poblano peppers on baking sheet and drizzle with a little oil. When oven is up to temperature, roast the poblanos for 12 to 15 minutes per side. Remove from oven and cover with a clean kitchen towel, set aside.
- In a large sauce pan, heat 3 tablespoons of olive oil to medium heat, add the shallots and serrano peppers, cook for 3 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for 1 more minute.Add the remaining ingredients for warm salsa, stir well to combine. Taste for salt and continue cooking until the tomatoes and tomatillos break down and salsa thickens slightly. Cover and keep warm.
- Remove the shrimp from refrigerator. Preheat your broiler for 10 minutes. While you are waiting, peel the blistered skins from the poblano peppers, carefully slit open, remove seeds, then fill each one with 1/2 cup of shredded cheese. Transfer the filled peppers to a foil lined baking sheet, set aside.
- In a large saute pan, heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil to medium/high heat. At this time, you want to transfer the peppers to the broiler. Add the shrimp to the saute pan and cook for 5 to 6 minutes or until shrimp is pink. The peppers should be ready to pull out of the broiler about then too. You want to make sure your cheese is melted and lightly browned.
- To plate, add about 1/3 cup of warm salsa,lay a chile relleno onto salsa, then top with serrano shrimp. Garnish with fresh cilantro lime wedges and caramelized onions. Yields 4 servings.
Caldillo de Jitomate (Fresh Tomato Sauce)
4 roma tomatoes
1/4 sweet onion
2 cloves garlic
1 to 2 serrano peppers
2 cups of water from tomatoes
2 teaspoons Knorr tomato bouillon
Fresh cracked pepper, to taste
1/3 teaspoon crushed oregano
Salt to taste
1. Score the ends of the tomatoes with and X shape. Add tomatoes, onion, garlic and chile serrano to a pot of boiling water. Reduce heat to simmer and cook for 15 to 20 minutes or until skins from tomato loosen up and start to peel away.
2. Remove tomatoes from hot water and let cool slightly before removing the skins. Transfer to the blender, along with onions, garlic and serrano. Add 2 cups of water from cooking tomatoes. Secure the lid using a kitchen towel to hold it down. Blend until smooth, set aside.
3. Preheat 2 tablespoons of olive oil to medium heat for a few minutes.When oil is hot, pour in the caldillo (tomato mixture). You should hear a loud searing noise right away. If not, your oil was not hot enough. Reduce heat, add bouillon, pepper and oregano. Let it simmer for a few minutes before adding anymore salt.Cook for another 10 to 15 minutes at med./low heat until it thickens and becomes a little darker in color.. Ladle over chiles rellenos, huevos rancheros or taquitos . Great over grilled fish too!