These are my healthier take on the classic chiles rellenos. They are typically stuffed with cheese and meat and various spices, and then fried. I decided to stuff the peppers with a corn, black bean, and fire roasted tomato mixture, and then bake them. I served the poblanos over this awesome cilantro rice. I wanted the rice to have some flavor and freshness to balance the spicy filling of the peppers. I ended up making a gorgeous green pesto out of cilantro, garlic, spinach, a little lime juice, and avocado oil, and then stirred it into the rice. It was awesome..I am totally gonna think up some more recipe ideas for “pesto rice”. I am really happy with how this turned out.
Adapted from this recipe
I made the above recipe of Rachael Ray’s about a year ago, and decided to change it up. I am really happy with this recipe, and it is great for entertaining. This dish looks a lot more time consuming than it actually is.
For the peppers and filling:
4 poblano peppers
1 medium yellow onion, chopped
1 jalapeño, finely chopped
1 red bell pepper, chopped
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 c. white corn
1 (15 oz.) can black beans, drained
1 (15 oz.) can fire roasted tomatoes
1 tsp. chili powder
1 tsp. cumin
1/2 tsp. oregano
1-2 cups of shredded Mexican cheese (I used a blend of Manchego, Asadero, Queso Quesadilla, Anejo Enchilado, and Queso Gallego)
For the rice:
1 1/2 cups brown jasmine rice or rice of your choice
2 cloves garlic
1 c. cilantro
1 c. spinach
juice of 1/2 a lime
1/3 c. avocado oil (you could also use olive oil)
salt and pepper
Preheat broiler to high.
Start the rice by boiling 3 c. of water. Once it boils, add rice, cover, and cook according to package directions.
Once broiler is preheated, place peppers on a baking sheet and place under broiler, until peppers are black and charred on the outside. This takes about 10 minutes or so, and I would recommend turning them at least once during this time. Once they are charred, remove from oven, let cool for a couple minutes, and then place them in a quart or gallon size storage bag and seal. Let peppers sit for 10-15 minutes, then remove from bag. This process allows you to remove the pepper skin with ease. It should peel right off. Once peppers are peeled, slice the top of each pepper open lengthwise, and scrape out the seeds. Set aside.
In a large skillet, heat 2 T. of olive oil over medium high heat. Sauté onion, garlic, and jalapeño for about 4-5 minutes. Next, add red bell pepper, and sauté for another 2-3 minutes. Next, add corn and black beans to the mixture, and reduce heat to medium. Season with chili powder, cumin, and oregano, and stir to combine. Lastly, add the can of fire roasted tomatoes, and simmer for 5-7 minutes until some of the liquid has evaporated. Season with salt and pepper and remove from heat.
Next, make the pesto. Combine cilantro, garlic, spinach, lime juice, and salt and pepper in a food processor. Pulse 20-30 times until the mixture is finely ground. While processor is running, slowly stream in the avocado oil until the pesto comes together and is smooth. Stir into the cooked rice. Set aside.
Now, you can start filling the peppers. Fill each pepper with about 1/4 c. of filling, depending how big your peppers are. You will have a lot of extra filling. It is great to eat over rice or by itself for leftovers. Once all the peppers are filled, close them up as best as you can, and place back on baking sheet. Top with desired amount of cheese, and place under broiler for 2-3 minutes until cheese is bubble and golden. Serve peppers over a bed of the rice, and garnish with additional chopped cilantro. Enjoy!
This pesto would be great on fish tacos or grilled chicken too.
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