I recently shared how I have teamed with a fellow blogger Neyssa, who runs the site Latina Misfit on a Mission to run a series of Hispanic-inspired Thanksgiving and holiday recipes here at The Coupon Project! Make sure to check out the Chorizo Rice and Turkey & Cheese Empanadas recipes in case you missed them.
Today, Neyssa’s back at it! She writes, “poblano macaroni and cheese is the twisted version of macaroni and cheese. There should be an “approach with caution” sign. Definitely for those that love spice. My neighbor raved about it, and to him it was not spicy at all. But to me, wow, yeah, I’d use half a poblano next time. So this is totally a spicy lovers’ dish!”
Here’s what you’ll need:
- 1-2 poblano peppers*
- 12 oz elbow pasta, cooked & drained
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1/4 cup finely diced onions
- 2 tablespoons flour
- 1 1/2 cup whole milk
- 1/2 teaspoon of cumin
- 1/4 teaspoon of chili powder
- 1 teaspoon of garlic powder
- pinch of saffron (optional)
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- 3 cups of white cheddar cheese, grated
- 1 cup of Monterey Jack cheese, grated
- 1/2 cup bread crumbs
- Cilantro to garnish (optional)
* Poblano peppers carry a kick. Make sure seeds are removed. (Seeds add extra heat.) Do not use water to remove the skin from the peppers, it will take away the smoked flavor.
Preheat the oven to 350°.
Grill poblano peppers over direct fire. Remove peppers from heat. Allow to cool completely. Gently peel charred skin from peppers. Cut peppers in half, remove stem and seeds. Chop finely.
In a large pan, over medium high heat, melt butter. Sauté onions in butter until softened. Add in flour, whisk for one minute.
Add in milk, lower heat to medium, whisk occasionally. Cook for one minute, then add in cheeses.
Continue stirring occasionally, until cheese has melted together, into a sauce. Lower heat to low. Add in seasonings, stir. Allow flavors to blend together for a minute. Taste and adjust salt to liking.
Fold in cooked pasta and chopped poblano peppers. Turn off heat.
Add macaroni and cheese to a greased casserole pan. Sprinkle bread crumbs over pasta. Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until golden.
Garnish with cilantro, if desired, and serve!