Stuffed Peppers With Goat Cheese Walnut Sauce

Also referred to as chiles en nogada, this Mexican-inspired Christmas dish has been a part of Central-American cuisine for hundreds of years. A little bit sweet and a little bit savory, this dish uses a mix of fruit, vegetables, spices and meat to create the perfect balance of flavors. The topping on the cake (or should we say, pepper) would have to be the homemade walnut and goat cheese sauce you pair it with. Unlike most classic Mexican dishes, this one uses ingredients not typically found. However, don’t let that stop you from trying something new. This dish is a delicious mix of cuisines that will certainly be the most unique dish at the Christmas table. Learn how to make it with our online culinary school chef in this tutorial video.

Stuffed Peppers With Goat Cheese Walnut Sauce

Ingredients
10 poblano peppers (fire roasted, seeded and pealed)

Stuffing Ingredients
1 tbsp vegetable oil
1 medium onion (diced)
2 garlic cloves (chopped fine)
1 lb ground beef
2 tomatoes (peeled, chopped)
1 plantain (peeled, chopped)
1 medium apple (peeled, chopped)
1 medium peach (chopped)
1 pear (peeled and chopped)
¼ cup acitrón
7 green olives (chopped)
¼ cup almond slivers
¼ cup raisins
¼ cup chicken stock
¼ tsp ground clove
½ tbsp capers
1 tbsp sugar (optional)
¼ tbsp salt
½ tbsp black pepper
¼ tsp ground cinnamon
¼ cup dry sherry

Stuffing Preparation
1. In a large skillet over medium heat, add the oil and sweat the garlic and onions without any color. Add the ground beef. Cook to golden brown, stirring the pan often; drain the excess fat.
2. Add the rest of the ingredients except the sherry. Lower the heat and keep a simmer, stirring frequently, until most of the liquid evaporates-about 15 minutes. Add the sherry and cook for another five minutes. Remove from heat and set aside, cool before stuffing the peppers.The green of the peppers and red of the pomegranate signify the colors of Christmas and the Mexican flag.

Walnut Sauce Ingredients
2 cups of walnuts (peeled)
Boiling water
1 (12 oz can) evaporated milk
1 (7.6 oz) half cream
5 oz goat cheese or mascarpone cheese
¼ tsp ground cinnamon
2 tbsp dry sherry
1 tbsp granulated sugar
Pomegranate seeds
Fresh parsley

Walnut Sauce Directions
1. Place walnuts in a medium bowl and cover with boiling water. Let them sit for about 5 minutes. Drain when cool enough to handle and peel the skin off. If need be, you can cover the walnuts again with hot water for a second time to finish the peeling.
2. Place the peeled walnuts in a blender with the evaporated milk, half cream, goat cheese, cinnamon, sherry and sugar. Puree until you get a smooth consistency. Strain to remove any large pieces.

Stuffed Peppers Assembly
1. Add about ½ cup of stuffing to each pepper; place the peppers in a serving dish. Top with walnut sauce. Garnish with pomegranate seeds and a sprig of parsley.

Note: Acitrón is the crystalized leaf of the biznaga Mexican cactus.

You can sub cream cheese or marscarpone for the goat cheese.

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