Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Relleno casserole

Last night we had a pseudo-Mexican meal. Who didn't, right? Anyways I make a damn tasty enchilada casserole from time to time and in the spirit of keeping our meals low starch the next few weeks, I modified it. I thought I'd share the results.

Relleno casserole
4 large servings

4 large poblano/pasilla peppers (these are very mild with the seeds and membrane removed, similar to a bell pepper but much better flavor)
1 pound lean ground turkey
1 small onion chopped
1 cup shredded cheese (your choice, I used sharp cheddar and about 1/4 cup of a mex blend)
1 small can enchilada sauce (green or red, I used red)
2 tsp chili powder
1 tsp garlic powder

Salt and pepper to taste

Roast the chiles over high flame on the grill about 3 1/2–4 minutes per side. When they are charred, remove to a heavy duty slide-lock plastic bag and seal shut. Meanwhile, brown turkey in a
non-stick pan over medium heat. Add onions when you can't see any more pink on the outside of the meat. Season mixture with chili powder, garlic powder, salt and pepper. Cook over medium heat for another 4 minutes or until onions are soft and translucent.

Preheat oven to 400°F. In a cool water bath, gently remove the charred skins from the chiles. Remove seed membrane, seeds and stem. Don't worry if the chile tears (because it probably will) because the next step is to cut each one lengthwise into 4 strips.

In a 8x8 or 9x9 baking dish, spread about 1/4 cup of the enchilada sauce. Next lay down 4 chile slices and top with 1/4 of the meat, a light sprinkling of cheese and a splash of enchilada sauce. Repeat layers and finish with a layer of sauce and cheese on the top.

Bake in preheated oven about 15 minutes. Broil (at a distance if it's a glass dish) for another 3 minutes or until the cheese is as bubbly as you like!

It really looks cheesier then it was. The sauce helps meld all the ingredients together. I let this cool for about 4 minutes while I nuked some frozen corn and plated the sides. It made it easier to serve. I recommend cutting into quarters and scooping with a spatula. It's messy, but very tasty and pretty damn healthy too!

You'll notice I actually threw in 2 corn tortillas into the middle of mine because I was a little concerned about having enough layers, but this ended up being completely unnecessary.

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