I recently started a new series on this blog known as Ingredient Focus. It has received much interest on my Facebook Fan Page and many have given me inputs on what they would like me to focus on in the weeks ahead. Two seasonal ingredients requested were chili peppers and pomegranate. Since these two ingredients are currently available at the grocery stores, I quickly went out and bought some so that I could work on them. To kill two birds with one stone, I made these delicious and festive Beefy Pomegranate Quinoa Stuffed Poblanos. They turned out really well and are great as an appetizer or light lunch.
Poblanos are large mild peppers. Occasionally, you may find a spicy pepper but not overly so. These huge cavernous peppers are great for stuffing and are delicious roasted. Roasting helps to soften and mellow them out. It also gives them a sweet and smoky flavor.
If you have never tried quinoa, this dish is a great place to start. Quinoa is pretty light and works well as a filling. I added lean ground beef for a slightly meaty bite and a handful of pomegranate arils for a crunchy texture and a festive touch. The pomegranate also provide a slight acidity and fruitiness to the dish. The stuffing is so tasty I could eat it on its own.
- 4 poblano peppers
- ½ cup (100g) quinoa
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 onion, chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 8 oz (225g) lean ground beef
- 1 tsp chili seasoning mix
- ½ cup (70g) pomegranate arils
- ½ tsp salt
- ¾ cup (85g) shredded cheese
Roast poblano peppers on the grill until peppers soften and skins blister. This should take about 15 minutes. Remove and set aside. When cool enough to handle, peel off charred skins. Carefully cut a slit in the pepper and gently scoop out seeds.
Rinse quinoa until water runs clear. Drain and place in a medium sized pan. Add 1 cup (240ml) water.
Place on the stove and bring water to a boil. Add a ¼ teaspoon salt, reduce heat, place the lid on and let quinoa simmer until all water is absorbed, about 15 minutes. Turn off heat. Fluff quinoa with a fork.
Heat olive oil in a large sized pan. Saute onion and garlic for 2 minutes. Add ground beef and allow it to brown for 4 to 5 minutes.
Stir in chili mix. Then add cooked quinoa and pomegranate arils. Add salt. Turn off heat.
Stuff roasted poblano peppers with beef and quinoa mixture. Top with shredded cheese.
Broiled peppers until cheese is melted and the top is beginning to brown, about 3 to 4 minutes.
Remove and serve immediately.
Do give these Beefy Pomegranate Quinoa Stuffed Poblanos a try. They are fun and tasty and I know you will enjoy them.
I will be working on the two Ingredient Focus posts for pomegranate and chili peppers. Be sure to check back soon…
Enjoy…..and have a wonderful day!