Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Poblano Rice

First there were the green mashed potatoes, otherwise known as Ina's Basil Potato Puree.  Now there's this glorious green rice, otherwise known as Poblano Rice.  I guess I'm really going green these days.

I got this terrific recipe from one of my favorite cooking shows, Marcela Valladolid's Mexican Made Easy. I don't get to watch the show often, but when I do I usually end up wanting to make every single thing she makes.  Marcela's recipes tend to be simple, straightforward, and relatively healthy at the same time.  A winning combination if you ask me.  I've tried many of her recipes over the past year and they've all been repeats.

In this recipe Marcela has you saute a combination of onion, poblano peppers, and garlic.  Once sauteed they are boiled briefly to soften and then blended with chicken broth to create a very flavorful green cooking liquid for the rice. There are two secrets to making this rice. The first is to toast the rice before adding the liquid. The second is to NOT STIR the rice as it is cooking! If you are worried about the rice sticking, go ahead and use a nonstick pan (just be careful not to scar your pan when you fluff the rice).

This rice is absolutely fantastic!  It's perfectly light and fluffy, has a hint of heat from the poblanos, and of course it's got the fun green color.  We made this early in the week and served it with some chicken enchiladas.  We loved it so much that we craved it again and decided to go ahead and have tacos just as an excuse to have the rice yet again.  If you really want to spice things up, use jalapenos instead of poblanos.  Either way, you really can't go wrong.  This really is a fantastic recipe that makes for a great side dish to all your Mexican-inspired dishes.

 Poblano Rice
Adapted from Marcela Valladolid @ Food Network
Serves 4-6

3 tablespoons vegetable/canola oil, divided
1/2 medium white onion, chopped
2 poblano chiles, stemmed, seeded and chopped
1or 2 cloves garlic, peeled and roughly chopped
3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 cup chicken broth, plus more if needed
1 cup long grain rice

Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a medium, heavy nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add the onions and saute until translucent, about 3 minutes. Add the poblano chiles and saute, about 8 minutes. Mix in the garlic and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute. Season with the salt and pepper. Add 1 cup broth and bring to a boil. Turn off the heat and let cool. 

Transfer the mixture to a blender and process until smooth, about 1 minute. Measure the liquid yield from the blender, adding more chicken broth if necessary to yield 2 total cups of poblano liquid. Adjust seasoning to taste.

Meanwhile, clean the skillet, place over medium heat and add the remaining 1 tablespoon oil. Fry the rice until slightly golden. Pour the poblano puree into the skillet and bring to a simmer. Turn down the heat to medium-low and cover tightly. Cook for 30 minutes, turn off the heat and let rest for 10 minutes. Fluff with a fork before serving.

Here are some links to more recipes we enjoy from Marcela Valladolid:

Jalapeno Roasted Chicken - This is probably one of our favorite chicken dishes.  We love it so much that we had this for Thanksgiving last year.
Chile and Cheese Rice -  Would be perfect for all the fresh corn in season right now.  Perfect side dish to the Jalapeno Roasted Chicken.
Vanilla-Pineapple Water - A creamy, fruity, refreshing drink perfect for this time of year.
Easiest Ever Chicken Mole Enchiladas - A quick and tasty version of mole.
Creamy Poblano Pepper Strips (Rajas) - A creamy and cheese corn and poblano dish perfect for serving in a taco or with a taco.
Sauteed Potatoes and Chorizo -  Again, perfect for stuffing in a taco, serving on the side, or for breakfast.


  1. Lovely color and it sounds fantastic!! Great choice!

  2. first of all, what a great way to get some veggies in you without even realizing it! Second of all...I love the flavor of poblanos and how it gets infused into every bite!

  3. oh this looks great love the color and flavors

  4. I love any rice that has flavor built into it and the color on this one is so pretty. ;-)

  5. Mexican risotto! Poblanos are one of my favorite peppers - some bite but not too much - ideal for cooking. And the rice is infused with them with every bite!

  6. Mmm - my roommate's favorite food is Mexican, so I think I will surprise her and make this for us one of these nights! Thanks for the recipe, the poblanos and garlic are making my mouth water already. :)


  7. I've been looking forward to reading about this ever since I saw it listed in your "Coming Up" section. Even though I use bell peppers all the time, my heart belongs to the poblano.

    I'm guessing the kids aren't against green food! ;)

  8. I love watching Marcela on TV on Saturday mornings. I think I saw her make this rice once before and thought it looked so delicious. Yours here looks just as good.

  9. You and the color green this week...ya got somehing going with old Kermit?! hahah Kidding (of course).....my man is a fan of the rice dishes. Southern upbringing I guess caue I would choose potatoes. This one is a winner Kim!

  10. Good lord I love this! I was just about to make dinner and now you have me rethinking my whole plan. Maybe I should go mexican with my grilled chicken.

  11. we eat a lot of rice in this house, so i HAVE to try this. the flavor sounds incredible and i love the color. i love it when a recipe is so good that as a family you can't wait to have it again!

  12. Interesting approach to cooking rice.
    Chile-infused rice sounds good to me.


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