Los Angeles

SFLA – Weekly Snail Mail

 To keep my chile pepper adventure going I made potato tacos w/ chile the other night (papas con rajas). I learned a few things… I learned that Pasilla Peppers and Poblano Peppers are erroneously mistaken for each other all the time. In reality, a pasilla is a dried chilaca chile (often called chile negro). A poblano pepper is the sleek & shiny, dark green chile which comes fresh and is found battered, fried and stuffed all over town. Another thing I learned is that when dealing with fresh chile it's to be roasted over fire, peeled then seeded. Plain and simple. I made the mistake of sautéing my sliced chiles, skin on, like an amateur. I then spent a decent chunk of time fishing out chile-skin-ribbons from my papas. Roasting peppers over fire or in a broiler chars the skin while gently cooking the pepper unit it's playable. It's food alchemy. I usually do this by hastily cooking peppers one by one on a stove top burner, cursing as the stems catch fire, and throwing them in a pot with a lid to steam until I'm through. Then you get to rubbing. Rub until all the skin and seeds are removed. It's embarrassing for me to share that what I really learned is that you don't slice and sauté poblano chiles. You char and rub them. It's messy and primal. The smell of roasted chiles is as intoxicating as anything can be. The extra process is worth it and I won't skip roasting the peppers ever again, promise. 

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