Poblano peppers were randomly 99 cents a pound at the grocery store today so I picked up 8. If you haven’t tried them, they’re a mild but flavourful pepper. This casserole turned out beautifully.

8 poblano peppers

1 3/4 lbs ground beef

1 Tbsp. bacon fat

2 small onions, diced

3 cloves garlic, minced

6 slices carrot from a jar of pickled jalapenos, chopped

1 pickled jalapeno, chopped

1 cup canned tomatoes and their juice

taco seasoning (to taste, I used several tablespoons)

hot sauce, salt, and pepper

4 oz grated cheddar

Move the oven rack to the second highest position and preheat the broiler. Arrange the poblanos on a baking sheet. Broil each side until the skin is blistered – I broiled for 3 minutes, rotated the pan, broiled for 3 more minutes, flipped, broiled for 3 minutes, rotated, and then broiled for 3 minutes.

Transfer the peppers to a bowl. Cover the bowl and let the peppers rest for the skins to loosen.

Meanwhile, fry the onions and garlic in the bacon fat. Add the ground beef, the pickled peppers, the carrots, and a couple of tablespoons of taco seasoning and cook until the ground beef is no longer pink. Taste the mixture and add more taco seasoning, hot sauce, salt or pepper until the mixture is fairly highly seasoned. Add the tomato sauce, bring to a simmer, and then set aside.

When you can handle the poblanos (I wore disposable gloves so I could handle them a bit sooner), peel off as much of the skin as comes off easily. (It’s not critical that you get it all.) Remove the stems and most of the seeds.

Preheat the oven to 350.

Spoon about 1/4 of the meat mixture into a 9×13 pan. Arrange 1/3 of the poblanos in a single layer on the meat sauce. Repeat the meat sauce and poblano layers twice. Finish with the remaining meat sauce. Sprinkle the cheese on top.

Bake for 20 minutes or until the cheese is melted and the casserole is bubbly. Serve with sour cream.