POBLANO MACARONI AND CHEESE

 

  • Cooking Time:
  • Servings: 8
  • Preparation Time:

Ingredients

  • 2 poblano (aka pasilla) chiles
  • 8 oz elbow pasta (2 cups)
  • 2 TB unsalted butter
  • 4 cloves minced garlic
  • 2 TB flour
  • 1 1/2 cups whole milk
  • 1 tsp mustard powder
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne
  • 1/2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon lime zest
  • 1/2 cup chopped cilantro
  • Salt and Pepper to taste
  • 4 cups grated while cheddar cheese (12 oz) (feel free to substitute orange cheddar)
  • 1/2 cup Cotija cheese

Directions

  • Under the broiler, roast your poblanos until blackened. This will take about 5 minutes per side. And we're not talking about 2 sides. It could be 3 or 4 sides....depending on the shape of your chili. Don't rush the process....but keep an eye on things.
  • Once they're roasted, stick em in a plastic bag and let 'em steam for a while....say...20 minutes. Remove from the bag and peel off the skin, remove the stem and seeds
  • Then cut that roasted baby into 1" long pieces. Set aside
  • While all this is going on....cook your pasta according to package instructions. But don't over cook them....maybe a little less than al dente. You don't want pasta paste once everything's said and done
  • About now would be a good time to preheat your oven to 375' and grease a casserole dish. If your pasta is done....pour it into the prepared dish and let it sit there while you make cheese the sauce
  • Next, you're going to start on your roux. Over low heat, melt the butter, then add the garlic and cook for about a minute tops...I recommend stirring the whole time so your garlic doesn't burn. Burned garlic is rather yucky. Whisk in the flour and cook, while whisking, until it becomes a light toasty brown color. This part is important. The browning of the flour reduces the floury taste
  • Whisk in the milk and stir until it thickens....yet is still "fluid". Remove from heat and stir in the mustard powder, cayenne, cumin, lime zest, cilantro and poblano chiles
  • Next, you're going to take half of the shredded cheese
  • Slowly add the cheese to the sauce and stir until it melts and is well combined. At this point, if your sauce is too thick, add a little milk....about a teaspoon at a time. Which I did have to do. If the cheese won't melt because your sauce has cooled down too much....put the pan back on the stove over a low heat
  • Pour the sauce over the pasta then top with the remaining cheddar cheese
  • Bake uncovered for about 20 minutes or until its bubbly and brown. Sprinkle with Cotija cheese and serve

Notes

I absolutely love the poblano flavor is this dish! Some variations you might want to do: substitute some of the cheddar with pepper Jack cheese and maybe add some bacon!! And maybe top it with some crushed tortilla chips for a nice crunchy topping. YUM!

Categories: Dinner  Pasta  Side Dish  Tex-Mex 

Author Credit: Lisa Fain

Website Credit: http://peacefulcooking.blogspot.com/2011/09/poblano-macaroni-and-cheese.html

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