Traditional Chiles en Nogada: A Feast for the Eyes and Appetite
Recipe Courtesy of Pilar Martz
A dish that truly honors the traditions of Mexico is traditional Chiles en Nogada. The colors in the Mexican Flag are proudly represented. Green from the roasted and peeled poblano chile. White from the light cream sauce. Red from the garnish of pomegranate seeds. But the ultimate surprise of this dish is the decadent filling of seasoned meat, fruit and nuts. Once you’ve tried it, you will never forget the transcendent sweet and savory explosion. It’s a thoroughly addictive combination.
Traditional Chiles en Nogada may seem complicated, but it is so worth the time. Your friends and family will never forget the flavor and gorgeous presentation.
Mexicans traditionally make Chiles en Nogada for Dia de la Independencia, in September, but it’s dish that is great for any special occasion
Traditional Chiles en Nogada
1 Kg of ground meat, 50% beef, 50% pork.
2 Finely chopped garlic cloves
10 Poblano peppers (large)
2 Apples cut in small pieces
1 Pear cut in small pieces
4 Small peaches cut into chunks
1 Large chopped onion
2 Plantains chopped in medium size pieces
4 Tomatoes chopped in tiny pieces
⅔ Cup raisins
1 Cup almonds (peeled and chopped)
6 Cloves (powdered)
1 Pinch thyme
1 Pinch cumin
2 Pinches cinnamon
Salt and pepper to taste
3 Cups cream
1 Cup milk
1 Cup peeled almonds
1.5 Cups pecans and/or almonds (best made with walnuts, soaked in milk and peeled)
2 Pinches salt
1 Pinch sugar
Meringue Egg Batter:
8-10 Eggs (you will need one egg per chile pepper)
½ Cup flour
The Poblano peppers need to be roasted over a stovetop flame until all the skin is burnt. Put roasted peppers in a plastic bag to let them sweat and then peel. Create a slit along the length of the pepper and remove the seeds. The peppers will be stuffed with the filling.
Here are some tips from Teresa Anda, on roasting poblanos (video in Spanish, great for a quick language lesson:
Saute the onions and garlic until transparent to the onions add the ground meat. When cooked add the tomatoes, and spices, and let it incorporate (15-30 minutes over low flame).
Fry the plantains until they are browned remove them from the heat. Add to the meat, apples, peaches and pears and let them incorporate in the pan. Then add the raisins and chopped almonds and plantains. Salt and pepper to taste.
Meringue Egg Batter
Separate the egg whites from the yolks and beat egg whites to form peaks (like a meringue). Slowly add the yolks and fold them into the batter. Stuff the peppers with meat mixture and flour. Dip stuffed peppers in the meringue egg batter.
Place oil in pan and preheat. Fry the stuffed chiles until all sides are golden.
In a blender, mix the cream, nuts and salt and blend until smooth.
Place a poblano stuffed pepper to the plate, cover it with the sauce and garnish with the pomegranate and chopped parsley.