Nov 6, 2013

Poblano Mac and Cheese

Some people wonder about the name of this blog: Urban Indian. I feel like an urban Indian because of my heritage of Native American and Hisipanic (and possibly French and English), and my life in modern urban times. And trying to integrate the two.

Thus I am drawn to recipes that call for preserving foods for the winter, foods that are nutritious, and foods that use ingredients from the Southwest. Thus I was drawn to a Macaroni and Cheese recipe that included Poblano peppers, and I wondered if my family would like it.I once made regular Macaroni and cheese from scratch, making a white sauce and adding cheese and noodles, My kids were not impressed, stating they preferred the kind from the box. Probably because that's what they were used to.

So you understand my concern. I used the recipe below as a guideline. I made a white sauce and cooked a whole package of penne, using probably 80% of it. The rest we had for another meal.

I didn't have milk so I used cream, and I added more queso fresco, just because I had it and wanted to use it up. For sour cream I used a latin Crema - The Centro Americana kind. I am currently obsessed with these and have been trying different kinds to try to taste the difference. So my version was definitely more fattening.

I used 3 poblano peppers because we like a little heat. I added penne to my cheese mixture until the consistency was such that all the noodles had a good creamy coverage with sauce. I ended up putting the mixture into two shallow pans and only had enough energy to prepare one topping, so we saved one pan for another meal. The next day my family demanded it for lunch, they wanted more so badly!

Also, I baked at a high heat (400) until browned.

I hope you enjoy as much as we did!

Poblano Mac and Cheese


8 oz. uncooked penne pasta
2 poblano chiles
1/2 cup fresh breadcrumbs (I used Panko)
2 tsp olive oil
1 tsp.grated lime rind
1/8 tsp ground red pepper (cayenne)
1 cup 1% low-fat milk, divided
1 cup vegetable stock
3 tbsp all-purpose flour
1 Tbs minced garlic
5 oz. queso-quesadilla cheese, shredded
1/4 cup fat-free sour cream
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
1 Tbsp fresh lime juice
1/8 tsp kosher salt
cooking spray


1. Preheat broiler to high.

2. Cook pasta according to package directions, omitting salt and fat; drain.

3. While pasta cooks, cut chiles in half lengthwise and discard  seeds and membranes.Place chile halves, skin sides up, on a foil-lined baking sheet; flatten with hand. Broil 6 minutes or until blackend. Place in a paper bag; fold to close tightly.. Let stand 5 minutes. Peel and cut into bite-sized pieces. Peel and cut into bite-sized pieces.

4. Combine breadcrumbs, oil, rind, and red pepper in a bowl. Place1/4 cup milk, stock, flour, and garlic inasaucepan, stirring with a whisk. Bring to a boil; cook 3 minutes or until thick, stirring frequently. Remove from heat. Stir in chiles, 1/4 cup milk,cheese,and next 4 ingredients until smooth. Stir in pasta. Spoon mixture into an 8-inch square broiler-safe glass or ceramic baking dish coated with cooking spray. Top with breadcrumb mixture. Broil 1 minute or until browned.

from Cooking Light Magazine, April 2013 pg. 122

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