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Chiles En Nogada

12 Poblano chiles, roasted and peeled
1 c Ground veal
1 c Ground pork (with 30 percent fat content)
1 ts Sea salt, or to taste
1/2 ts Freshly ground black pepper, or to taste
1/4 c Vegetable oil
1/2 md Onion, finely chopped
1/2 c Almonds, chopped and toasted
1/2 c Pine nuts, toasted
2 c Chopped cactus
1/2 c Raisins
1 bn Epazote, chopped
1 1/2 c Fresh walnuts, skinned
1 c Milk
1 c Cream
Seeds from two ripe pomegranates
2 tb Fresh parsley, finely chopped


Make a vertical slit down the side of each chile and carefully remove the seeds, leaving the stem intact. Mix the veal and pork in a bowl. Add the salt and pepper. In a large heavy skillet, over a medium heat, cook the oil with the onion until translucent. Add the ground meat and cook, breaking up any clumps, about 5 to 7 minutes. Add the almonds, pine nuts, cactus, raisins, and epazote. Cook and stir constantly, until the meat is done. Remove the meat mixture from the heat and let cool. Stuff the chiles with the meat mixture and put them on an ovenproof platter, covered with loosely tented foil. Place the platter in a warm oven while finishing the sauce. Place the walnuts in a blender. With the motor running, add the milk slowly, until smooth and thick. Add the cream and blend well. Cover the chiles with the walnut sauce and garnish with the pomegranate seeds and parsley.


Yield: 6 entrée or 12 starter servings


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