Several weeks ago, someone in one of my cooking groups posted a recipe for a Chili Releno Casserole. There was no link, just a recipe. so my concoction is loosely based on her recipe, with several changes made by me (as usual, I can’t make a recipe without some alterations!) Having plans for a hamburger based meal later in the week, I decided this casserole was a good for for two lone sausage in my freezer along with a boneless chicken breast. Black beans were added for texture and more flavor. Are you getting the idea that this is an extremely flexible recipe? It can be done vegetarian using two cans of beans. Skip the sausage, and use two chicken breasts. Be conventional and use hamburger. Double the ingredients and make a 13×9 pan to take to a Cinco De Mayo Party! Very flavorful, not too spicy and could be enjoyed by any crowd.
1 large boneless chicken breast, cut in 1″ cubes
2 sausage links, any kind, cut in 1″ cubes
1 can black beans, drained
3 Poblano peppers, cut in 1″ pieces
1 onion, small dice (not pictured- I didn’t have one)
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/8 C. flour
3/4 C. milk
1 T. chili powder
1 T. oregano
2 t. cumin
2 t. black pepper
2 C. and mixed Cheddar, Monterey Jack or shredded “Mexican” cheese
Sour cream for garnish
Sprinkle of red pepper flakes (optional)
In a large frying pan, sauté poblanos (reserve 1/4 C. for top, and dice them smaller) and onion with sausage. Cook for 5 minutes and then add the garlic and chicken. To the pan, add 1 teaspoon of each of the seasonings (chili powder, oregano, cumin and black pepper). Toss well to distribute seasonings. I think it is important to season the ingredients while sautéing, adding the rest when baking. It enhances the flavors and brings out their oils. Cook for just another 3-4 minutes.
Combine eggs and flour and remainder of seasonings. Whisk until no visible lumps of flour are gone. Add milk next. I find the flour combines more smoothly when done in this order.
Spread your meat and peppers in the bottom of an 8×8 or 9×9 pan. Top with the drained and rinsed black beans.
Top with cheese and the reserved 1/4 C. of poblanos.
Pour egg, flour and milk mixture over all. Bake in a 350 degree oven for 45 minutes.
Serve with a dollop of sour cream and a dash or red pepper flakes.