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Stuffed Ancho Chilies in Escabeche

Stuffed ancho chilies in escabeche

This is one of our favorite ways to enjoy leftovers from a big Mexican meal, particularly if you still have a few ancho chilies left in the bag after you cook. Rehydrated ancho chilies can be stuffed with anything really, but a smooth, crumbly cheese like ricotta, goat cheese or feta makes a more satisfying texture than a melty cheese like cheddar. 

This is also a great way to use up leftover Spanish Rice, although it can be made with freshly cooked rice as well.


  • ½ cup olive oil
  • 1 large onion, sliced
  • 2 tablespoons dark brown sugar
  • Salt to taste
  • 1 cup red wine vinegar
  • ½ cup red wine or water
  • 1 tsp. dried tarragon (opt.)
  • 6 red or black ancho chiles
  • 4 garlic cloves, unpeeled
  • 400 g (1 container) ricotta
  • 1 cup cooked rice
  • Fresh ground pepper


  1. 1

    To make the escabeche, heat olive oil in a pan on medium. Add sliced onion and sauté, gently, until softened, about 5 minutes. Add sugar, salt, wine vinegar, wine or water, and tarragon. Simmer gently for 15-20 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside.

  2. 2

    Meanwhile, toast the ancho chilies on a hot pan until supple, about 10-15 seconds on each side. Using a small, pointy knife, carefully cut a slit into the side of each chile and remove as many seeds and as much placenta as possible. Try to keep the stems in tact, but remove if necessary.

  3. 3

    Place seeded anchos in a large bowl, then cover with the onion escabeche. You may need to weigh the chilies down with a plate to ensure they are submerged. Soak until fully rehydrated, about 30 minutes.

  4. 4

    Meanwhile, toast the unpeeled garlic cloves on a hot pan until soft, about 10 minutes. Remove from heat and peel.

  5. 5

    Place garlic cloves in a bowl and smash with a fork. Add ricotta, rice and pepper, then mix until thoroughly blended.

  6. 6

    When rehydrated, remove anchos from the escabeche. Try to drain them as well as possible. Stuff each chile with the filling.