Puerto Vallarta, Mexico - A relatively simple dish to make, Chile en Nogada has become one of Mexico's most patriotic dishes. Made from red, white and green ingredients to symbolize the colors of the Mexican flag, it is a roasted chile poblano stuffed with a sweet-savory meat and fruit picadillo filling and served with a walnut cream sauce topped with pomegranate seeds parsley.
Augustinian nuns invented Chile en Nogada in 1821 to serve to Agustin de Iturbide when he returned to Puebla after signing Mexico's Declaration of Independence from Spain, which explains why this traditional cuisine is often referred to as the country's 'national dish.'
From the historic beginnings to the colors of the flag, Chile en Nogada has all of the ingredients needed to celebrate Mexico's Independence Day on September 16th.
CHILE EN NOGADA RECIPE
6 poblano peppers
250 g ground beef
250 g of ground pork
100 g of peeled walnuts
50 g of goat cheese
1 cup of pomegranate seeds
½ onion, chopped
½ cup of tomato puree
3 tablespoons of chopped almonds
3 tablespoons raisins
3 tablespoons pine nuts
1 peach, peeled and diced
1 pear, peeled and diced
1 large banana, diced
4 tablespoons oil
1 cup of flour
4 eggs (separate the whites from the yolks)
500 ml of milk
¼ cup of port
½ cup parsley
Oil for frying
1. In a frying pan, heat the oil and fry the onion until it turns transparent. Add the banana and brown it a little. Continue with the pear and peach. Remove from the pan and reserve.
2. In another pan, fry the meat. When it is cooked and begins to brown, add the tomato puree, raisins, almonds and pine nuts. Cook over low heat for 15 minutes, then add to the preparation in step 1.
3. Meanwhile, beat the egg whites until stiff and add the yolks and heat the oil in a pan.
4. Cut the chiles lengthwise, remove the seeds, and stuff with the hot meat mixture. (The original Puebla recipe calls for the chiles to first be roasted, this version does not include that step.)
5. Dip the chiles in egg and cover them with flour.
6. Fry them in the hot oil by turning them so they brown on all sides.
7. Drain on paper napkins to remove excess oil. Keep warm and reserve.
8. Grind walnuts in the blender and add goat cheese and port to make the nogada sauce.
9. Place the battered chiles on a plate. Serve the nogada sauce over the chile and garnish with parsley and pomegranate.