Seafood Stuffed Poblano Peppers

It’s stuffed pepper day at casa de One Woman’s Kitchen.  Sounds weird, I know.  Whenever I’ve thought of stuffed peppers in the past (and that’s not very often) I think of big green bell peppers stuffed with meatloaf.  Perfectly good for a rainy day meal, but not something I crave.  Then I discovered red bell peppers stuffed with lamb, orzo and feta.  Major improvement on the traditional stuffed pepper.  Now I’m learning that stuffed peppers can be very versatile!  There are lots of varieties of peppers out there and endless combinations of stuffings you can put in them. 

Today for lunch I had Sausage Stuffed Sweet Banana Peppers.  Yummy.  And just the right size to have one or two for lunch.  Tonight for dinner I’ve changed up the peppers and the stuffing.  At the farmers’ market last Saturday one of the farmers had beautiful  tubs of poblano peppers.  I couldn’t resist.  And I’ve been trying to get to them all week.  What a treat for the end of the week!  Over the last few years so good food has come out of this kitchen.  Tonight’s dinner is some of the best.  Seriously.  This is worth making often.  And it’s not as much trouble as I thought it might be. 

I did actually search for recipes and came upon two that sounded pretty good.  Someday I’ll likely make Guy Fieri’s Poblano Stuffed with Chorizo, Shrimp and Rice.  The other one seemed overly complex, but served as good inspiration too.  It’s called Killer Baja Chile Rellenos Mariscos.  In the end, knowing that I would have to peel and devein shrimp – one of my least favorite kitchen tasks – I wanted to limit other chopping and measuring.  Fortunately I had an open jar of my homemade salsa verde to use instead of chopped vegetables, herbs and measured spices.  Throw it in some rice and it’s a darn good side dish.  Add some shrimp, scallops and a little monterrey jack and it’s the world’s yummiest pepper stuffing.

It actually all came together pretty nicely.  While the whole peppers roasted in the oven I cooked the rice and peeled and deveined the shrimp.  Since the peppers had to cool a little while I had time to do a quick saute on the seafood and mix the stuffing together in a bowl.  You do have to get the seeds out of the roasted peppers.  I tried two ways.  First, I cut the side off of a couple of the peppers and then removed the veins and seeds.  I ended up needing to remove the stems to get the seeds out.  It’s the stem that holds that end together so those peppers were sort of a base for the stuffing rather than a bowl.  On the up-side there was lots of surface for putting the cheese on top.  For the other two peppers I decided to cut the tops off and fish out the seeds and veins from the top.  I rinsed them out with water to be sure I got all the seeds.  Stuffing those was really easy because I had a cone to work with. But not so easy to get the cheese to stay on for melting.  I think probably either way is fine.

I chose shrimp and scallops for the seafood because they looked good at the market today.  You could also use a mild white fish as long as it’s firm enough to hold it’s shape.  Some calamari might be nice too.  I’d just stay away from anything overly fishy.  If you like some extra heat add some chopped jalapenos.  If you’d like a tiny bit of a crunchy texture add some corn shaved off of the cob.  To make life easy you might even get a microwave bag of rice with corn and peas and carrots already in it.  Whatever works for you.  Have fun with it!

Good? So very, very good.
Easy? I’m going to call this intermediate because there are several things going on at once.
Good for company? Absolutely.
Special shopping? Nope.

Seafood Stuffed Poblano Peppers

Ingredients

6-8 poblano peppers
1/2 C rice
1/2 lb shrimp (36/40 count)
1/2 lb scallops
1 1/4 C salsa verde
1 C monterey jack cheese, shredded
limes for garnish

Directions

Line a baking sheet with foil and lay whole peppers on the foil. Roast at 350 for 15-20 minutes, until the tops are wrinkly. Remove from the oven and set aside to cool.
While the peppers roast cook 1/2 C rice in 1 C water.
Peel and devein the shrimp. Cut each shrimp into 3 pieces.
Cut scallops so that the pieces are the same size as the shrimp pieces.
Put the rice into a large mixing bowl with 1 C of the salsa verde.
Heat the remaining 1/4 C salsa in a small skillet and add seafood. Cook seafood about 2 minutes. It will be cooked almost all the way, but not completely through.
Add the seafood and 1/2 C cheese to the rice mixture.
Remove the seeds from the peppers either by removing one side section or by removing the top.
Stuff each pepper full of seafood and rice stuffing. Top each pepper with some of the remaining cheese.
Bake at 350 for an additional 15 minutes. Cheese should be melted and bubbly.

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