PURPLE PERUVIAN POTATOES SLEEPING IN WARM POBLANO PEPPERS

I was invited by the Smithsonian's National Museum of the American Indian (Washington, DC), to prepare a dish using potatoes (potatoes are indigenous to South America) for the Living Earth Festival and Native Foods Symposium.  What resulted was a simple to prepare, yet complex in flavor, savory dish of creamy potatoes, nestled in roasted Poblano chile peppers.  You will find no cheese or deep frying in this recipe, making it more healthful, and keeping in theme to my ancestors not having dairy or lard as available ingredients before contact with Columbus.  Your whole house will smell indigenously delicious! 

Serves 4

Cooking Time: 1 ½ hour

 

INGREDIENTS

2 lbs. Peruvian purple potatoes, peeled, small dice

4 medium crimini mushrooms, small dice

2 Serrano chiles

4 Poblano peppers

4 plum tomatoes

1 white onion, skin left on, halved

3 cloves garlic, unpeeled

2 tsp. maple syrup

2 T. tomato paste

¼ C. vegetable broth

1 tsp. ground cumin

2 T. olive oil

sea salt

 

Preheat oven to 425 degrees. 

MISE EN PLACE

On a large baking sheet, lined with foil, place Serrano chiles, Poblano peppers, garlic cloves, tomatoes, and onion halves in a single layer.  Drizzle with 1 T. olive oil.  Roast in the oven for 30 – 40 minutes, or until the skins are charred, turning occasionally to promote even roasting (Poblano peppers and onions will take the longest).  Transfer tomatoes, onions, Serrano chiles, and garlic to a plate, and place Poblano peppers in a medium size bowl, and cover tightly with plastic wrap.  Keep covered until peppers are cool enough to handle, about 30 minutes.  While the vegetables are cooling, start the potato filling.

Using a medium sauté pan, warm remaining 1 T. olive oil, add Peruvian potatoes and cook, stirring often until cooked through yet firm.  Add mushrooms, tomato paste, cumin, and vegetable broth.  Cook 5 minutes more.  Salt to taste.  Take off heat and keep warm. Use this mixture to stuff the peppers.

Peel the roasted tomatoes, onions, and garlic cloves.  De-stem and de-seed the Serrano chiles.  Using a blender or food processor, add the tomatoes, onions, garlic cloves, and Serrano chiles and pulse until desired consistency (I like mine a little chunky). Place the salsa puree in a medium saucepan, add maple syrup, bring to a simmer and cook 10 – 15 minutes.  Prep the peppers. 

Remove the skin from each pepper.  Make a slit down one side, and carefully remove the seeds.  Stuff the peppers with the potato mixture, and serve with the tomato salsa. 

Felicia Cocotzin Ruiz, LLC ©