This was my first time working with tofu, and it was an experiment that turned out okay. Typically tofu is marinated before cooking, but I didn't read up on that fact when I made these. From what I can tell, tofu is found exactly nowhere in Mexican cuisine, so i guess you can consider this dish a mashup.
1/2 large onion, diced (about 1 cup)
4 oz. oyster mushrooms, chopped
1 cup frozen corn kernels
10 oz. firm tofu
¾ teaspoon smoked paprika
½ teaspoon coriander
1 teaspoon cumin
3 cloves garlic, minced
Salt and pepper
1 tbsp lime juice
Over medium heat, add olive oil to a large skillet, then cook the onion and mushrooms for about 2 minutes. Add the tofu, corn, paprika, coriander and cumin, and cook until the mushrooms and onion are softened, about 7 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for about 1 minute more. Season with salt and pepper. Remove from heat to a bowl, and add in lime juice.
Chipotle Tomato Sauce
1 28 oz. can whole tomatoes (I used San Marzanos)
2 chipotle chilis in adobo
½ large white onion, kept whole (skin removed)
1 bay leaf
1 tbsp sugar
1 teaspoon oregano
1 teaspoon cumin
¼ teaspoon cayenne
½ teaspoon ancho chili powder
Puree the tomatoes and chipotle chilis. Add to a medium sauce pan along with the onion and bay leaf. Heat to a simmer. Add in the seasonings, tasting to adjust. The flavors will concentrate as the sauce cooks down, so go easy on the spices at the beginning. Simmer for 45 minutes, uncovered. Adjust the seasonings, and remove the onion and bay leaf.
Assembly and baking:
4 to 6 poblano chilis (depending on size)
Wash off the poblano chilis and place under a low broiler for a few minutes per side, until the skin starts to blacken and blister. Once the skin is blistered on both sides, remove from the oven and let cool for a few minutes. Remove the skin under running water – it should peel right off. You don’t have to remove every last bit. Cut a slit down the center of the chili, being careful not to bisect the chili in half. Remove the seeds and stem – wash them in the sink again to remove remnants of seeds.
Preheat your oven to 400°F. Fill each chili and reassemble the best you can, placing them in a 13x9 baking dish. Top each chili with cotija cheese. Bake for 15 minutes, with the rack in the middle of the oven until the cheese melts. Turn the broiler on high for about 1 minute if you want to get some color on the tops.