Chiles RellenosPosted: October 3, 2014
I tend to equate Guatemalan foods with home and comfort, which I always crave even more so as the weather starts to cool, and I’m feeling nostalgic for childhood Autumn. We try to visit Rhode Island at least a few times a year, and I get my fix for my mom’s comfort food. When I’m here in Los Angeles, however, I prefer to cook those comfort foods at home rather than buy them, so that I can get closer to my mother’s flavors. One of the common ones I crave, is chiles rellenos, which translates quite simply to stuffed peppers. I altered my mom’s recipe just a tad to make these healthier by incorporating more vegetables in the stuffing, and using whole wheat flour in the egg mixture instead of white flour.
1 lb ground beef
3 large bell peppers (I like using orange or red)
1 cup finely chopped carrots
1/2 finely chopped yellow onion
2 cloves finely chopped garlic
1/2 cup peas
2 cups chopped spinach
3/4 cup olive oil
2 tablespoons whole wheat flour
1 1/2 tablespoons salt
2 teaspoons black pepper
2 teaspoons dried thyme
2 teaspoons paprika
Steamed rice (optional)
In a medium sized pan heat about 1/2 tablespoon olive oil. Finely chop onion and garlic and add to hot oil, saute until translucent. Add ground beef to pan and break apart using a wooden spatula. Once the meat has begun to turn brown, add carrots, peas, spinach, thyme, paprika, salt and pepper. Continue to saute ingredients until meat is thoroughly cooked and vegetables are soft. Set aside to cool.
Cut up bell peppers into large pieces, about four pieces from each pepper. Grill peppers on a griddle until peppers have begun to soften and bottoms are roasted. You can roast in oven for about 15 minutes if you do not have a griddle.
In a large bowl, add just the whites of both eggs. Beat eggs until white and soft peaks begin to form, then add egg yolks and whole wheat flour. Continue to beat until fully incorporated. Separately, place remaining oil into a pan and heat on stove-top.
Stuff the pepper pieces with meat mixture, being careful not to have them overflow. Dip each piece into the egg mixture, use a spoon to fully cover the pepper with egg. Place each piece into pan with hot oil, and lightly fry on each side until the egg mixture is firm and turns brown.
Remove and place on paper towel. Serve with rice if desired.