Poblano Cream Cheese Spaghetti Holiday Meal Side

Are you ready for holiday cooking? Have you started to plan menus? Do you know what side you’ll be bringing with you? I don’t know about you but one of my favorite things about the holidays is the food. Of course the time spent with family celebrating is THE best thing for us but a close second, and total part of those interactions, is the food we share. One special items that makes it appearance at our holiday tables is what we’ve all come to call “Green Spaghetti”. It goes great with turkey or ham or just about anything else you can think of eating during our fun holiday seasons. So without further ado here is a quick peak into our Poblano Cream Cheese Spaghetti Side. It’s super easy to make and will be a hit at any party or with any meal.

One quick disclaimer: This recipe was invented by my mother. Great cook who creates by sight and taste (not measurements). I am attempting to interpret amounts to the best of my ability but in the words of Martha Stewart… I’m a nobody blogger who has no test kitchen to perfect a recipe for sharing. Hope it turns out well or that it inspires you to experiment and create your own version.
Holiday Side dish - poblano cream cheese spaghetti
Holiday Side dish – poblano cream cheese spaghetti

What you need:

  • 1 8-ounce bar of cream cheese- softened
    (reduced fact, name brand, store brand… to your
  • 1 package of spaghetti (or any pasta
    of your choice)
  • 2 -4 Medium sized Poblano
    Peppers (use more or less to control heat)
  • Butter or non-stick spray to coat baking dish
  • 1/4 cup to 1/2 cup milk (pick your favorite: non-fat,
    2 percent, whole)
  • 1 cup of shredded cheese (preferably Kraft Mexican Blend)
  • Course Salt for seasoning or Consomé (chicken bullion) I use Knorr
  • Baking dish (Glass, foil, whatever… like what you’d use to make a lasagna)
  • Blender
  • Oven

Poblano Cream Cheese Spaghetti Directions:

  • roasted poblanosRoast the poblanos.  Do this  directly over an open flame or 4 inches below a broiler, turning regularly until blistered and blackened all over. This will take about 5 minutes
    over an open flame or about 10 minutes under the broiler. Then place the peppers into a plastic bag and close it (Ziploc, fruit/veggie,
    bag from grocery store… whatever you have on hand) and let them cool down until manageable. The bag will look steamy and you will be able to see condensation. Once they’ve cooled (I would wear plastic/cooking gloves) take the peppers out and peel with your hand, or rub off, the blackened skin. Pull out the stem and seed pod. Briefly rinse to get rid of any stray seeds or bits of skin. If you are concerned with how spicy (hot) the pepper might be I’d open it up and try removing the veins as well, if not just slice it up to place in the blender. Do this for all of them.
  • Cook the pasta. Cook the spaghetti or other pasta according to package directions.
  • Make the sauce. While the pasta is cooking put the softened cream cheese, the chopped up poblano peppers, a about one tablespoon of consomé (chicken bullion) or a really good sprinkle of course salt and about 1/4 cup of milk into the blender. Pulse or puree until the mixture forms a uniform light green sauce about the consistency of you. Add more milk to thin consistency as needed. If it gets too thin you can add a bit more cream cheese and salt but the peppers should be a primary flavor so don’t get it too creamy. Taste and season as needed. My mom will often throw in a little bullion or other seasonings depending on what she has on hand. It doesn’t need much but you can certainly add what you like.
  • Get the pasta and poblano sauce together. Pre-heat the oven to 350 F degrees. Take your baking dish and either coat it with a light layer of butter or coat it with the non-stick spray. Place your cooked pasta in the pan spreading it out to form one even layer. Add the sauce from your blender (if it’s been a while give it a whirl to mix it evenly before pouring). Use your gloved hand or utensils as needed to toss the pasta so it’s evenly coated by the green sauce. At this point you can stop and refrigerate over night if making this in advance. If not, move on to the last step.
  • Finishing touches for the Poblano Cream Cheese Spaghetti Side Dish. Into your preheated oven… place the dish in the oven for about 10-15 minutes or until it’s thoroughly warmed through. Pull it out of the oven and spread one cup (or a little more) of shredded cheese evenly over the top.  Turn on the broiler and place the dish about 4 or 5 inches below to melt and brown the shredded cheese. Approximately 5 minutes or less. Once the cheese is melted pull out the baking dish and let it rest a minute or two before you cut up squares to serve as a side along with your holiday meal.

This will have a slight hint of spiciness or be VERY spicy depending on how many poblanos you use and how much of the seeds and vines you remove. If you think the peppers will be too hot you can roast them and get them ready and chopped as indicated above and soak them in milk over night. You should dump out the milk and place the peppers in the blender to proceed as indicated above. That will help cut down on the heat and make for a delicious side.

If you try the green spaghetti let me know. Would love to hear how it turns out for others. Enjoy!

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