Tuesday | 2 March 2021 | La Quinta, California: Though we dined on old standbys Monday, I went way way way outside my skill level and prepared Chile Rellanos for the first time tonight.
Monday night, I made Tofu & Bok Choy with Sesame-Ginger Sauce, using the massive head of bok choy from the CSA box. This dish was served with homemade chicken potstickers (from the freezer) (recipe coming soon).
To use the two large CSA poblano chiles, I was going to try something new: chile rellanos. This decision was an easy one due to another instance of odd decision-making by yet another Instacart shopper who probably is not a cook. I had ordered a block of jalapeno jack cheese. You know... the shrink-wrapped type... to cut into little cubes for our evening cocktail snacks. Apparently, in the entire grocery store there was not one package of this cheese (yeah, right), because we were delivered a half-pound of sliced jalapeno jack from the deli. I did put it on crackers one night, but it just crumbled into a mess. This is when I had the brilliant idea to stuff it inside the poblanos!
Since grilling/roasting the chiles inside the house would make quite a stink, I took the project outside and fired up the gas grill. It took quite a long while to get the skins blistered, but I had a parade of golfers to entertain me as I waited. After the peppers were competely charred, I popped them in a bowl, covered it tightly and waited about twenty minutes before carefully peeling the skin from the peppers. (Just do a search on Youtube to see this messy - and difficult - procedure.)
I made a slit on top of each chile, crammed in about three slices of crumpled cheese and pinched the seam closed. Then the stuffed peppers waited inside the fridge all afternoon.
Appetizer tonight was a little smoked tuna with onion, capers, Italian seasoning (I'm running out of ideas here, people!), held together with a blob of sour cream.
Preparing the batter for the rellanos was pretty easy (again, Youtube videos). I whipped two egg whites until stiff, then added two egg yolks, salt, and about 2 tablespoons of flour. (Because the rellanos were cold from the fridge, I think it was easier to dip the chiles into the batter and kept them from falling apart/splitting open while frying?) Fried in sunflower oil, they were not pretty, but they were pufffy, melty, and the taste was spot-on.
The rellanos were served on a bit of warm salsa, and along yellow (a pinch of turmuric) rice with peas.
It is traditional to serve the sauce over the rellano... but whatever. Wouldn't that just make it soggy?
We are coming back to America for dinner tomorrow. Until my next update, I remain your "okay, so now I've made rellanos" correspondent.