This is my take on a traditional Chili Rellenos using homegrown peppers 🙂
First, I make the refried beans. Take 2 cups of pinto beans (we buy organic in 25 lb. bags for $1.50/lb.) and soak in a warm place for 12 hours, drain and rinse and let sprout for 12-24 hours. Sprouting neutralizes enzyme inhibitors and other “anti-nutrients” that are inherent to ALL seeds and act as a protective mechanism for the seed, once sprouted it is no longer a bean but now a plant. This is what pinto beans look like after sprouting:
Then cook the beans just like any other bean, boil in water till soft then drain really well and set aside or store in fridge until ready to make the refried beans. To make the refried beans, chop 1 medium-large onion very finely and mince a couple of cloves of garlic. Fry them in butter, bacon grease, or coconut oil or some combination thereof, over low heat until very soft and carmelized. Turn up the heat to medium-high, add more fat and then add your cooked sprouted pinto beans, mashing with a potato masher and frying until all the fat is absorbed, keep adding the fat as you fry until it is nice and creamy…if it seems dry you haven’t added enough fat!! Season liberally with salt and pepper… Here is the finished product:
Next, you cook your rice. We like organic brown basmati rice that we buy in 25 pound bags just like the pinto beans. Soak the rice for about 12 hours, rice doesn’t sprout very well in my experience but as long as you put it in a warm place and plenty of scummy bubbles form (a sign that germination has occurred) it should be fine for eatin’. I most often cook my rice in homemade homegrown chicken broth. About 3 cups soaked rice to 6 cups chicken broth cooked very very very slowly over very very very low heat for about 45 minutes to an hour. Turn off heat, let sit covered for about 10 minutes then fluff with a fork and add butter and salt and pepper. This is a basic brown rice that I make at least once a week and keep on hand in the fridge for quick meals.
Now that the refried beans and rice are ready, brown some ground beef, in this case I used grassfed ground beef 🙂
Then cut some cold cream cheese into “sticks”. I have also made this dish in the past using goat cheese made from our goat’s milk, but since my goats aren’t in milk right the cream cheese will have to do 🙂
Then stuff your cream cheese and then the ground beef into your peppers. In this case I used mildly spicy dark green “Biggie” chili and light green “Hungarian Budapest” peppers from the garden…you can use ANY type of pepper!
Cover your pan full of stuffed peppers with aluminum foil and bake in a 325 degree oven for about 30 minutes or until peppers are soft, you’ll know when the peppers are close to done as their enticing aroma fills the whole house with deliciousness! Then take pan out of oven, lift up foil and top the peppers with cooked brown rice and shredded cheese, cover with foil and put back in oven for a few more minutes until rice is heated through and cheese is melted.
Serve up the finished product with the refried beans on the side and top with sour cream and salsa and/or hot sauce or do like me and replace the rice with a couple of nitrate/nitrite free all beef hot dogs! Either way, it’s DAMN GOOD 😀