Chiles en Nogada (Puebla)
Chile Rellenos in Walnut Sauce with Pork-Picadillo Filling
2 pounds ground pork salt and pepper
1 teaspoon ground canela
1 teaspoon ground allspice
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
2 cups water
1 onion, cut in quarters
3 bay leaves
2 cloves garlic, smashed
1/2 onion, chopped
2 tablespoons butter
8 roasted plum tomatoes, puréed and strained
1 apple, peeled and finely chopped
2 firm bananas, chopped or 1 ripe plantain, chopped
1/4 cup candied cactus fruit, finely chopped or 1/4 cup raisins, finely chopped
1 tablespoon sugar
1/2 cup pine nuts, lightly toasted or 1/2 cup slivered almonds, lightly toasted
2 cups shelled walnuts, lightly toasted
1/2 cup cream cheese or 1/2 cup unsweetened mascarpone
1 slice bread, soaked in 1/4 cup milk
1/8 cup semi-dry sherry or 1/8 cup apple juice*
1 tablespoon sugar salt
16 small chiles poblanos, roasted, peeled and carefully seeded or 8 large chiles poblanos, roasted, peeled and carefully seeded
For the filling, season the meat with salt, pepper, canela, allspice, and clove; add water, quarted onion, bay leaves, and garlic; simmer until tender; then strain. Remove the onion, bay leaves, and garlic.
Seat (don't brown) the chopped onion in butter in a separate pan until transparent; add the tomato and heat through; then add the fruit and sugar. Season with salt and pepper.
Simmer for another 2 minutes, incorporate the meat and pine nuts or almonds into the mixture, and simmer for another few minutes to allow the flavors to blend.
For the sauce, blend the walnuts in a food processor with the cream cheese, bread, sherry, sugar, and salt. Gently warm (do not boil). If the walnut sauce is too thick, add a little cream.
Stuff the chiles with the filling and heat through in a 350 degree oven for about 10 minutes. Place the chiles in a serving dish and cover them with the walnut sauce. Decorate with pomegranate seeds and parsley or cilantro.
If using apple juice then omit sugar from the recipe.
As prepared, each serving contains 750 calories, 52g total fat, 100mg cholesterol, 350mg sodium, 45g total carbohydrate and 31g protein.