poblano pepper stuffed with cheese and baked in salsa
The chile relleno, literally “stuffed chile”, is a dish of Mexican cuisine that originated in the city of Puebla. It consists of a roasted fresh poblano pepper (a mild chili pepper named after the city of Puebla), sometimes substituted with non-traditional Hatch chile, Anaheim, pasilla or even jalapeño chili pepper. In its earliest incarnations, it was described as a “green chile pepper stuffed with minced meat and coated with eggs”. In current cuisine, it is typically stuffed with melted cheese, such as queso Chihuahua or queso Oaxaca or picadillo meat made of diced pork, raisins and nuts, seasoned with canella; covered in an egg batter or simply corn masa flour and fried. Although it is often served in a tomato sauce, the sauces can vary. There are versions in Mexico using rehydrated dry chiles such as anchos or pasillas.
The poblano is a mild chili pepper originating in the State of Puebla, Mexico. Dried, it is called a chile ancho (“wide chile”). The ripened red poblano is significantly hotter and more flavorful than the less ripe, green poblano. While poblanos tend to have a mild flavor, occasionally and unpredictably, they can have significant heat. Different peppers from the same plant have been reported to vary substantially in heat intensity. A closely related variety is the mulato, which is darker in color, sweeter in flavor and softer in texture.