chili-rellenos_ready-to-eat

I love Chile Rellenos, but I have never made real ones at home, mostly because I try to avoid frying things at home. But I really do love the flavors in this fantastic and flavorful dish, and so I created this quick and easy version to satisfy that taste. This is not authentic Chile Rellenos, this is not even authentic Mexican food. If you want that you can visit my friend Ben’s blog, What’s Cooking? This is just my way of getting the flavor combination that I love so much by using up pantry goods and leftovers. I have never posted this recipe, and I haven’t made this dish in a while, but I used to make it quite frequently, back in the day. It is good for families, or to bring as a potluck dish. I think it is going to come back as a regular feature to our menus, because it really is yummy. I mean who doesn’t LOVE the combination of cheese and beans, and a little bit of heat? Major comfort food.

haupia_coconut-cake-on-pan

To cool down the palettes, after the spicy main, I made Haupia for dessert. I saw this recipe on my buddy Adam’s blog, Baking with Dynamite and it looked so awesome I bookmarked it for later use! Almost a year later, I decided to make it. I have really started to love using coconut milk as a base for desserts, and am going to be using it a lot more often. Haupia is a coconut milk based dessert that is from Hawaii and is reminiscent of a pudding. My family loved this, and it is certainly something I will be making again. It is great for the summer when you want something for dessert that is not too heavy. The toasted coconut on top really makes this rich and creamy dessert all the better!

Southwest Style Stuffed Peppers AKA Fake Chile Rellenos

chili-rellenos_baked

INGREDIENTS:

2 cans of re-fried beans – or you can make your own, which makes this dish even better!
2 large fresh tomatoes, diced
½ large onion, diced
2 cloves of garlic, minced
a few dashes of hot sauce
1 cup shredded cheese – I used pre-shredded Mexican cheese because it was on sale
juice from ½ lime
coconut lime smoked salt
Mexican mole seasoning
chili powder
1 cup of cheese for top of casserole
1 16 oz. Jar of salsa verde
4 Cubanelle peppers – I normally use Anaheim for this dish, but I wasn’t sure if the people I were feeding were into spice

METHOD:

chili-rellenos_chilis-going-in-the-oven

Preheat oven to 350F. Slice the tops of the peppers. Place then in a glass baking dish, filled with ¼ inch of water and cook for about 20 minutes to soften the peppers.

In the meantime, in a large bowl, mix the beans, tomatoes, onion, garlic, hot sauce, 1 cup of cheese, lime juice, and seasonings.

chili-rellenos_stuffing-chili

When the peppers come out of the oven and are cool enough to touch, fill them with the bean mixture. Place stuffed peppers in a baking dish. If you have leftover filling, spread it on top of the peppers. Pour the jar of salsa on top of the peppers and bean mixture and then sprinkle with the other cup of cheese.

Bake at 350F for 45 minutes, or until cheese is bubbly. Serve with rice, corn, tortillas or whatever else you have on hand. Serves 6-8

Haupia

INGREDIENTS:

-2 cans lite coconut milk
-3/4 cup sugar
-1/2 cup cornstarch
-2 tsp vanilla
-1 1/2 cups water
-toasted coconut, to garnish

METHOD: – (This is Adam’s description)

This recipe is super easy. First grease a 8×8 pan with cooking spray and set aside ( I, Jenn, omitted this step, as cooking spray is not a part of my diet).

In a large sauce pan, bring both cans of coconut milk to a gentle simmer. In a small bowl, add sugar, cornstarch, vanilla, and water, and whisk until smooth and there are no lumps. Add the water mixture into the coconut milk and stir with a wooden spoon until smooth.

Let the combined milk mixture boil on medium heat until it thickens up, about 20 minutes. Make sure you stir frequently, so the bottom does not burn as the milk boils. You’ll know it’s thick enough when it starts to look more gel-like and comes away from the side of the pan when you stir. If you’ve ever made lemon pie from a mix like My T Fine… you know what I mean.

Pour the hot mix into the prepared 8×8 pan, and let cool for 15 mins on the counter. Then store covered with plastic wrap in the fridge for 2-3 hours before serving. Top with toasted coconut, maybe some slivered almonds, and you’re all set. Cut into squares and serve. Makes 9-12.