Salsa de Mole Poblano (Classic Mole Poblano Sauce)

Dave DeWitt Recipes Leave a Comment

This subtle blend of chocolate and chile is from Puebla, where it is 
known as the “National Dish of Mexico” when it is served over turkey.
This sauce adds life to any kind of poultry, from roasted game hens to a
simple grilled chicken breast. It is also excellent as a sauce over
chicken enchiladas.


4 dried pasilla chiles, seeds and stems removed
4 dried red guajillo or New Mexican chiles, seeds and stems removed
1 medium onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, chopped
2 medium tomatoes, peeled and seeds removed, chopped
2 tablespoons sesame seeds
1/2 cup almonds
1/2 corn tortilla, torn into pieces
1/4 cup raisins
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground coriander
3 tablespoons shortening or vegetable oil
1 cup chicken broth
1 ounce bitter chocolate (or more to taste)


Combine the chiles, onion, garlic, tomatoes, 1 tablespoon of the sesame 
seeds, almonds, tortilla, raisins, cloves, cinnamon, and coriander.
Puree small amounts of this mixture in a blender until smooth.
Melt the shortening in a skillet and saute the puree for 10 minutes,
stirring frequently. Add the chicken broth and chocolate and cook over a
very low heat for 45 minutes. The sauce should be very thick. The
remaining sesame seeds are used as a garnish, sprinkled over the
finished dish.

Chipotle-Corn Salsa with Poblanos and Morels

Dave DeWitt Recipes Leave a Comment

This recipe is part of a five-part series devoted to chipotles–those many varieties of smoked chiles. You can go here to start reading–and cooking with–chipotles of all kinds.


5 ears of corn in husks
5 tablespoons diced morels (or other wild mushrooms, rehydrated if dried)
1/4 cup olive oil
2 poblano chiles, roasted, peeled, stems and seeds removed, diced
1/4 cup sundried tomatoes, minced
1 small onion, chopped and sauteed
2 tablespoons minced cilantro
1 tablespoon minced chipotles in adobo
2 teaspoons fresh marjoram, minced
1 teaspoon freshly squuezed lime juice
Salt to taste



Place the corn on a baking sheet and bake at 400 degrees for 30 minutes, turning often, until the corn is blackened on all sides. Allow to cool.

Cook the morels in 2 teaspoons of the olive oil until well browned, about 10 minutes.

Shuck the corn and brush with 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Grill or broil the corn until the kernels brown, about 10 minutes. Cut the kernels from the cob and reserve.

Combine the corn and the morels with the remaining ingredients (and the remaining olive oil) and mix well. Serve warm on a bed of greens.

Ophelia’s Chiles Poblanos Rellenos

Dave DeWitt Recipes Leave a Comment

Ophelia’s chiles rellenos are the best on the island. They are almost always gone by mid-lunch, so don’t wait! The tomato sauce can be prepared one day in advance.


For the Tomato sauce:

  • 4 roma tomatoes, chopped

  • 2 small onions, chopped

  • 1 clove garlic, chopped

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil

  • ½ cup water

  • Salt to taste

For the Chiles:

  • 1 1/3 cup prepared tomato sauce

  • 4 poblano chiles, roasted and peeled

  • 12 ounces Mexican white melting cheese (i.e. Supremo’s Oxaca), cubed

  • 16 toothpicks

  • Canola oil for deep-frying

  • 2 cups flour

  • 2 teaspoons salt

  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

  • 2 eggs, separated

  • 2 tablespoons heavy cream, at room temperature

  • 4 tablespoons feta cheese

  • 2 tablespoons chopped cilantro


For the Tomato Sauce:

In a pan, sauté the tomatoes, half the onion, and the garlic in 1 tablespoon of the oil for 10 minutes. When cool enough, purée the mixture in a blender with the water until smooth. Meanwhile, sauté the rest of the onion in the rest of the oil over medium heat until browned and soft. Add the purée and cook, covered, over low heat for 10 minutes to blend the flavors.

For the Chiles:

Slice off and reserve the caps of the poblano chiles. Carefully seed and rinse the chiles, keeping them whole. Stuff each chile with the cheese and secure the caps with at least 4 toothpicks each. In a deep pan or wok, heat oil (enough to cover chiles halfway) to 350 degrees F.

While the oil heats, mix the flour, salt and pepper into a shallow bowl. In a separate small bowl whisk the egg whites until frothy. Add the yolks to the whites and whisk until blended.

Just before frying, dip each pepper into the egg and then the flour, covering completely. Lightly shake the pod to remove the excess flour, and carefully return to the egg mixture. Use a spoon to cover the pepper with egg once again, and then return to the flour mixture for a second coating. Shake gently to remove any excess. (This “double dipping” will ensure that the flour sticks and provides an extra crispy coating.)

Using tongs, gently place the pepper in the hot oil. Take care, as it will splatter. Cook for 3 to 5 minutes or until browned. Turn the pepper once and cook 3-5 minutes more, until browned. Take care not to overcook or the cheese will escape. Drain the cooked peppers on a rack over paper towels for a minute.

To serve, ladle 1/3 cup prepared tomato sauce on a plate and place a chile on top. Garnish with ½ tablespoon heavy cream, 1 tablespoon feta and ½ tablespoon chopped cilantro. Serve with plenty of Ophelia’s Habanero Salsa.


Poblano Pepper Rings

Dave DeWitt Recipes Leave a Comment

Since poblanos make some of the tastiest chiles rellenos, it makes sense that they fry up deliciously. Why not dip these rings in guacamole?


  • 1 cup flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • ½ teaspoon cayenne powder
  • 3 cups vegetable oil
  • 3 poblano chiles, roasted, peeled, seeds and stems removed, cut into 1/4-inch rings
  • 1 cup buttermilk


Combine the flour, salt, pepper and cayenne and mix well. Transfer the mixture to a plate. Heat the oil in a large pan until it just begins to smoke, then lower the heat slightly. Take the poblano rings 4 at a time, dip them in the flour, shake off any excess, then dip them in the buttermilk and back into the flour. Drop them into the hot oil and fry until lightly browned. Repeat with the rest of the rings and then drain on paper towels. Serve them warm.

Yield: 4 to 6 servings

Heat Scale: Mild


Poblano Shrimp Quesdillas

Dave DeWitt Recipes Leave a Comment

This is Mexico’s answer to the grilled cheese sandwich! They are most delicious made with the rich, stringy cheese from Chihuahua made by the Mennonites, but lacking that, any good melting cheese such as mozzarella, string or even Monterey Jack are good substitutes. Quesadillas can be made with either corn or flour tortillas and the tortillas can be folded in half over the filling, or stacked with the filling in between. Cheese isn’t the only food you can use, I use what is on hand in my refrigerator. Just remember you are only toasting the quesadilla until the cheese melts so any filling needs to be cooked before using.


  • 2 teaspoons vegetable oil

  • ½ small onion, sliced

  • 1 poblano chile, roasted, peeled, stem and seeds removed, and cut in strips

  • 2 teaspoons dried epazote, or substitute dried oregano, Mexican preferred

  • 8 corn tortillas

  • ½ pound cooked small shrimp

  • 1 to 1 ½-cups grated mozzarella cheese


Heat the oil in a heavy skillet until hot. Add the onions and saute until they are softened. Sprinkle the epazote or oregano over the top. Transfer the onions to a bowl and toss with the chile strips. Using a paper towel, wipe any excess oil out of the skillet.

Return the skillet to the heat, and warm the tortillas, 1 or 2 at a time, on one side over medium heat. Turn the tortillas and place some of chile mixture on one half of the tortilla. Sprinkle a little epazote over the mixture. Top with the shrimp and sprinkle some of the cheese over the top.

Continue to heat the tortillas until cheese begins to melt. Fold them over and continue on one side and then the other until the cheese has melted and the tortilla starts to crisp. They should be slightly crisp but still chewy.