Chiles Rellenos

October 1, 2006

Chiles Rellenos

(from Amy’s grandmother and great-grandmother)

12 long green chiles, roasted and peeled (leave stems attached)
4 eggs, separated
1/2 lb ground beef, cooked and seasoned with garlic, onion, and salt (for veggie version try substituting seasoned or cheesy mashed potatoes)
3 tablespoons flour, plus 1/4 cup for dredging
dash of salt
cooking oil (eg canola)

Make one slit down each chile and remove as many of the seeds as you easily can. It’s better not to rinse them out. Leave the stem attached for a handle. Lightly coat the outsides of the chiles with flour and stuff with meat. With an electric mixer, beat egg whites until you get soft peaks. Fold in beaten egg yolks into egg whites.
Add 3 tablespoons flour and salt, mixing thoroughly but gently. Heat about 2 inches of oil in a small heavy pan. Dip stuffed chiles in egg batter and transfer to hot oil with a generous amount of batter. Spoon extra batter on uncovered portions of chile. If there are parts of chile without batter, it will splatter more when it is flipped.
Cook on both sides until golden brown and batter is cooked. Drain on paper towels and eat immediately. Serve with plenty of cool/room temperature salsa (recipe below), especially if the chiles are really spicy. Eat with rice and beans or lentils.

15 oz canned or fresh tomato, chopped
2 generous pinches crushed dried oregano, Mexican or Greek
1 or 2 small cloves garlic, crushed
salt and pepper to taste
2 to 3 tablespoons oil

Mix all ingredients. Pass the salsa with the chiles, spooning over them only just before eating.

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