Chiles rellenos con calabacitas – chiles stuffed w/zucchini


2 1/2 tbsp peanut or safflower oil
1 1/2 lbs zucchini, trimmed and diced
1/2 medium white onion, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 tsp salt, or to taste
1/4 tsp oregano
2 tbsp wine vinegar

A good squeeze of lime or lemon juice
2 tbsp fruity olive oil
6 oz queso fresco or farmer cheese, crumbled
6 med chiles poblanos, peeled & cleaned
2 tbsp sweet butter
romaine lettuce leaves

6 radish flowers

How to prepare

Put 1 1/2 tbsp of the peanut oil, zucchini, all but 2 tbsp of the onion, half the garlic, and the salt into a heavy pan, then cover and cook over a medium flame for about 8 minutes, turning them from time to time so they do not stick. (the squash should steam in its own juices, but if it seems very dry, add a little water. Remember too that squash vary in moisture content, so if there appears to be too much water exuding from them, remove the lid, turn up the flame and reduce the liquid.) While the mixture is still warm, add the remaining 2 tbsp chopped onion, the remaining garlic, the oregano, vinegar, lime juice, olive oil, and cheese. Adjust the seasoning. Stuff the chiles until they are full but will still meet at the opening. (there should be about 1/2 to 1/2 cup of the stuffing left over, depending, of course, on the size of the chiles.) Fasten each opening with a toothpick. Melt the butter and remaining 1 tbsp peanut oil together. Add the stuffed chiles and fry them over a medium flame, turning them over gently so the stuffing does not fall out, until lightly browned. Arrange the chiles on a serving dish and garnish with lettuce leaves and the radish flowers. Sprinkle with the remaining stuffing. They can be served either hot or cold as a first course. 6 servings

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