An exploration of self: Rajas con Crema

My father was born into a poor family in a small village outside of Puebla, Mexico.  My mother was born to two immigrants who hailed from Mexico (my grandmother) and Ecuador (my grandfather).  Therefore, based on the evidence, I am Latina.

You would probably never think it by looking at me.  I just look like a regular ol’ American girl.  But I want to be so much more than that.  I want to grasp at the culture that my family left behind when they came to the states to start over.   Sure, I could paint my house brilliant shades of color, and put a Virgen de la Guadalupe statue in a small grotto in my backyard, but I think the most productive way of going about this would be to cook.  Cooking immerses you in the smells and tastes of a culture.  Spicy, bold, colorful, heated–these words can describe Mexican cooking.

I’ll start with a few recipes that I learned from my father.  When I was in college, there was nothing I looked forward to more than coming home for a break and being able to eat to my father’s famous chile verde, using the thick polenta slices to mop up the sauce so I could get every last bite.

Rajas con Crema–this dish literally means Peppers with Cream, which doesn’t sound too tasty to start.  But don’t let the name fool you.  These peppers refer specifically to poblano peppers–big, dark green peppers that you traditionally use to make chile rellenos.  The cream simply must be crema mexicana-a sort of thin cream.

The recipe I found on The Other Side of the Tortilla does a good job of keeping it simple and straightforward.  Check out my Instagram for a pic of the final product!