Exotic, hearty, sweet & spicy – that´s how I would describe the Mexican dish we made last week. My Mexican cooking teacher Rosita told me about it as very traditional dish but not vegan at all. When I saw the pictures of it I decided to try a vegan version which was a very wise decision! 😉 Let´s have a quick look on Wikipedia to see what Chiles en nogada is:
The name comes from the Spanish word for the walnut tree, nogal. It consists of poblano chiles filled with picadillo (a mixture usually containing shredded meat, aromatics, fruits and spices) topped with a walnut-based cream sauce, called nogada, and pomegranate seeds, giving it the three colors of the Mexican flag: green for the chili, white for the nut sauce and red for the pomegranate. (Wikipedia)
For the vegan version we used vegan minced meat instead of regular one and vegan yogurt + vegan cream. The other ingredients are vegan on its own. All together is just mouth-watering!! I felt a little bit like eating a very exotic vegan chistmas dinner!
Chiles en nogada
- 400 g vegan minced meat
- about 10 poblano chiles, or any other (bell) pepper you like and get
- 1 onion, chopped
- 1 apple, chopped
- 1 peach, chopped
- 2 big tomatoes, chopped (and peeled – I didn´t peel them because I don´t think it´s that necessary)
- 1/4 cup lemon juice
- 2 teaspoons sugar
- 40 g raisins
- olive oil
- 1 clove of garlic, chopped
- salt & pepper to taste
- 200 g vegan yogurt
- 200 g vegan cream
- 300 g chopped walnuts
- 1/2 teaspoon sugar
- 1 pinch cinnamon
- seeds of 1 pomegranate
- optional: parsley or cilantro
Put the poblano chiles or bell peppers straight into a fairly high flame, or under a broiler and let the skin blister and burn. Turn the chiles from time to time so they do not get overcooked or burn right through. You also can cut them in half, seed them and put them into the oven instead at 200 degrees. Be careful to leave the top of the chili intact.
Afterwards cover the chili with a damp cloth and leave them for about 20 minutes. Peel and seed them (if not done already).
Heat oil in a frying pan. Add onions and garlic. Cook for 2 minutes. Add vegan minced meat. After another 2 minutes add apple, peach and tomatoes. Cook for some minutes more. When ready add raisins, sugar and lemon juice. Season with salt & pepper. Set aside.
Combine yogurt, cream, walnuts, cinnamon and sugar.
Stuff the chilies with filling until they are well filled out. Pour sauce over warm chile peppers and garnish with pomegranate seeds and fresh parsley or cilantro.