Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Poblano's Revenge, In Perspective

Remember those handsome poblanos I bought over the weekend? You'll see them, roasted and stuffed, on the left in the photo above. Everything else I made for dinner was great, but they almost ruined my night.

First the kitchen filled with smoke as I charred them under the broiler. Our fire alarm, which has actually gone off while I've been making toast, had a field day. Several times. Because I couldn't stand the beeping and couldn't tend the flames and fan the smoke at the same time, I cut the roasting time a little short. Of course the peels then stuck like squirrel fur to squirrel meat.

I had to scrape them off piecemeal with a knife, but since these were local, organic, heirloom poblanos, of course they were runty. The combo of the sticking skin, scraping, and their small size meant that I tore them to shreds in the process. Still, I managed to cram a bread and parmesan stuffing into their small, tattered cavities, and when they came out of the oven they had hung together, the cheese had browned, and they actually looked decent.

I thought I could finally enjoy my hard work until I took a bite. There was no flavor, only bitter, vengeful heat. I've always known poblanos to be delightfully mild with only a hint of capsicum, and I have a decent heat tolerance if I do say so, but these sent me open mouthed to the milk jug. Even in today's Bitten they're referred to as having "gentle warmth," but I guess there's just something special in the feisty soil of New England.

Still, what China's dealing with really puts things in perspective. Suddenly deciding between organic or local seems much less important than spending a month's salary just to find out if your child will live.

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1 comment:

Jay said...

You're not supposed to fan the fire alarm. Just unplug it.