Poblano Sopes with Avocado Salad

This chile pepper is often mislabeled ‘Pasilla’, which is a different pepper entirely.It is one of the most popular chiles in Mexico and has won the appreciation of many a chef worldwide because of the superior flavor it has over regular bell peppers.

They have a tough outer skin that usually requires roasting and peeling before use. These very large chile peppers are most popular in chiles rellenos recipes, but cooking with these as a substitute for bell peppers in any recipe will enhance the flavor.

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1 poblano chile
1/4 cup quinoa
5 oz masa harina
1 cup warm water
1/2 tsp salt, divided
1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper, divided
2 tbsp + 1 1/2 tsp olive oil, divided
1 1/2 tsp lime juice
1/4 tsp sugar
5 oz arugula
1 pint halved cherry tomatoes
2 tbsp cilantro
4 oz queso fresco, crumbled
1 avocado, peeled and coarsely chopped
1 (15 oz) can black beans, rinsed and dried


Yield: 4 servings

Poblano-infused corn cakes are topped with a fresh-flavored arugula, black bean, avocado and queso salad.

Preheat broiler.
Cut the poblano in half lengthwise and discard the seeds and membranes. Place the chile halves, skin sides up, on a foil-lined baking sheet. Broil until blackened, about 6 minutes. Place in a container and cover. Let stand five minutes. Peel and chop the chile. Combine the chile, quinoa, masa harina, 1 cup water, 1/4 tsp salt, and 1/4 tsp pepper in a medium bowl. Stir until a soft dough forms.

Heat 1 tbsp olive oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Using a 1 1/2 tbsp cookie scoop, add dough to the pan and cook for 3-4 minutes on each side, or until browned. Repeat with remaining dough.

Combine the remaining 1/4 tsp salt, remaining 1/4 tsp pepper, 1 1/2 tsp olive oil, lime juice and sugar in a medium bowl, stirring with a whisk. Toss together the arugula, tomatoes, cilantro, queso fresco, avocado, and black beans. Toss with the dressing and serve over sopes.

From joanne-eatswellwithothers.com