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Supper Club: Rajas con Crema (Poblano Strips with Onions and Cream)

For our Supper Club, Dino made an awesome side dish. Here’s his summary:

After reading the instructions for the Horchata, I felt that it was too easy for my only dish. Not wanting to feel like a slacker, I searched for popular Mexican side dishes and this dish was a popular result. I followed the advice of a reviewer and sought out Mexican crema, a more traditional ingredient, in favor of the suggested crème fraîche or heavy cream. The Mexican grocery store across the street carried a product from Nestlé called Media Crema Table Cream. As the reviewer stated, the stuff didn’t look so appetizing but it certainly added depth to this simple side dish.

I also thought it would be perfect to use a well-seasoned cast iron skillet which always seems to work wonders when onions and peppers are involved. Oh, and lots of salt. It’s not mentioned in the recipe, but I used quite a bit to season this up a bit before serving.

Rajas con crema on a plate.

Recipe from Gourmet – July 1997

Yield: Makes 32 Tacos

2 pounds fresh poblano chilies (about 8)
1 medium white onion (about 8 ounces)
3 tablespoons vegetable oil
1/3 cup crème fraîche or heavy cream

Roast and peel chilies. Wearing rubber gloves, cut chilies into 1/3-inch-thick strips. Halve onion lengthwise and cut each half lengthwise into 1/4-inch-thick slices.

In a heavy skillet cook onion in oil over moderately low heat, stirring frequently, until softened, about 5 minutes. Add chilies and salt to taste and cook, stirring, 5 minutes. Add créme fraîche or cream and cook, stirring, 2 minutes. Rajas may be made 1 day ahead and chilled, covered. Reheat rajas before serving.

MacGourmet Rating: 5 Stars

Ashley Covelli is a food photographer, recipe developer, and culinary instructor based in Ossining, New York. She loves helping people become enthusiastic and adventurous in the kitchen so that they can build skills and confidence to cook for themselves and their loved ones. She can almost always be found with at least 3 different beverages within arm's reach.

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