Preparing stuffed poblano peppers can be a rather involved process. First I roast the peppers using a small torch. This can also be accomplished by broiling in the oven, roasting over the flame of a gas stove or by charring over coals on the outdoor grill. After a pepper is properly charred I plop it into a paper sack so the enclosed atmosphere will allow the pepper to sweat thereby loosening the charred skin. When the pepper has cooled the skin easily rinses off under running water.
When first envisioning this dish I intended to use red poha (flattened red rice), which would have considerably shortened preparation time, but without thinking I put some brown rice in a bowl of water to soak, so that is what I went with.
To cook the rice I heated a pot with a little oil and briefly sautéed cumin seeds. Then I added the soaked and drained brown rice and salt and let that roast for a couple minutes while stirring. I then added water and let it simmer until the rice was cooked and there was no more liquid.
Meanwhile I sautéed a few cumin seeds and chopped onion in olive oil, followed by the addition of carrots chopped small, finely chopped garlic and frozen chopped spinach. I then added the cooked brown rice and placed a lid on the skillet until the carrots and spinach were cooked.
At the risk of over seasoning, because poblano peppers can have some heat of their own, I added my Tex Mex Chipotle Seasoning.
For more vegetable content I added some cooked peas. Yes, these were canned peas, but they sure came in handy as an afterthought.
I tasted and determined that more salt was called for. Chicken Style Seasoning is quite salty so I threw in some of that.
The poblano peppers were stuffed with the brown rice and vegetables preparation and arranged in a lidded casserole dish in a puddle of plain tomato sauce. This was baked at 375º until done.
At this point I wished I had included roasted walnuts in the rice preparation. As an afterthought I went ahead and roasted broken walnut pieces and scattered them on top of the peppers. Adding the toasted walnuts at the end may not have been such a bad idea after all because they had just the right amount of crunch to vary the texture of the dish. This was intended to be a vegan dish but temptation got the best of me and I slipped in slices of Asiago cheese before sliding the casserole dish back in the oven (sorry, vegans).
The peppers fell apart when I attempted to plate them, so there are no pretty pictures to show. The important thing was there were no leftovers. That’s got to mean something.