Sometimes, you can pinpoint the exact moment when a dish goes wrong. Other times, you get to the end, give the food a taste, and think, “What the hell happened?!” And then, there are the times when things are bad, bad, bad, from start to finish. And even though you see it coming, you are powerless to stop it. Yep, that was me in my attempt at a chile rellenos of sorts.
It began with a trip to LA Mart in Silver Spring, my favorite spot for out-of-season produce from exotic locales. I usually stop in sometime during the dead of winter when I just can’t eat one more carrot. This time, I picked up some pointy, green, poblanno-esque peppers, figuring I could stuff them, cover them in cheese and call it a dinner.
I got home and the trouble began. I roasted the peppers on the stove, where they got all blistery and black looking. Not sure if that was good or not, but I soldiered on. The recipe I used directed me to scrape off the black bits and core the peppers, leaving a nice, smoky shell. What I ended up with were several limp, slimy green sheets. But I continued. The filling would redeem them, I figured. Plus, they would be covered in cheese.
The filling was about what you’d expect—black beans, tomatoes, spices—with one addition: grapefruit. A bit odd, I thought, but I was willing to give it a try. It could be one of those surprisingly delicious combinations, like pickles and cream cheese wrapped in corned beef.
Nope. It was just bad. It was hard to nail down what exactly was bad about it, which means it was also impossible to correct. But I now had about four cups of the stuff, so I stumbled blindly on. I “stuffed” the slimy pepper sheets with the grapefruit-black bean blend.Read More›