Poblano chiles, Capsicum annum, when dried are called Ancho Chiles (pronounced “AHN CHō”). Poblano is a mild chile native to the Mexican State of Puebla. The dried poblano is called chile ancho which translates to “wide chile”. Ancho Chiles are the most commonly used dried chile in Mexico. In this country, Poblano Chiles are best known for their starring role in chile rellenos.
History of Poblano Chiles
“Chile poblano” translates to “chile from Puebla” in Spanish. Puebla City is the capital of the state of Puebla and is Mexico’s fourth largest city. Historically considered one of the five most important Spanish colonial cities in Mexico it has also played a key role in shaping Mexican cuisine. The patriotic dish Chiles en nogada was created to honor the Mexican General Agustin de Iturbide (also known as Augustine of Mexico). During the Mexican War of Independence, he commanded the army that seized control of Mexico City in early 1821, gaining freedom for Mexico. He is also credited as the original designer of the first Mexican flag.
On August 24, 1821, General Agustin de Iturbide signed the Treaty of Cordoba in Veracruz securing Mexico’s independence from Spanish rule. After executing the treaty he stopped in Puebla on his way back to Mexico City. Legend has it that local nuns from the Santa Monica convent created the first Chiles en nogada dish as a tribute to him with the green, white and red colors of the Mexican flag serving as inspiration. The green was represented by the color of the Poblano chile, the white from the sauce topping the chile and the red from the garnish of the red pomegranate seeds. This dish is traditionally served at room temperature.
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