tamale pie with romaine hearts

This dish is your favorite childhood chili reimagined with an ultra-creamy cornmeal topping. We sprinkled sharp cheddar on top and popped it all in the oven for...
By: Anna Becker / 09/07/2016 /

To balance the soft poblano heat, we added a refreshing side of romaine hearts, seasoned with salt and pepper and our go-to red wine vinaigrette. Cook, relax, and enjoy!

What you'll need: 1 cup cornmeal 1 medium yellow onion 2 large cloves garlic 1 poblano pepper 2 oz sharp orange cheddar cheese 12 oz ground beef 2 tsp cumin 1 can whole peeled tomatoes 2 Tbsp red wine vinegar 2 romaine hearts coarse salt olive oil freshly ground black pepper

Equipment: medium saucepan large skillet

Recipe steps:

  1. Cook cornmeal Preheat oven to 425°F. Bring 3 cups of water to a boil in a small saucepan. Slowly whisk in cornmeal and 1 teaspoon salt. Simmer, whisking often, until thickened, about 5 minutes. Cover and remove from heat.

  2. Prep vegetables Meanwhile, halve, peel, and finely chop onion. Peel and finely chop garlic. Cut poblano pepper in half, discard stem and seeds, and chop. Grate cheddar.

  3. Cook aromatics Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a medium ovenproof skillet over medium-high. Add onion, garlic, and poblano and cook, stirring, until softened and starting to brown, about 3 minutes.

  4. Brown meat Add ground beef, cumin, and 1 teaspoon salt to skillet. Cook, stirring, until browned, about 5 minutes.

  5. Add tomatoes Stir in tomatoes and 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar. Cook, breaking up the tomatoes with a spoon or kitchen shears until most of the liquid has evaporated, about 3 minutes. Season to taste with salt.

  6. Bake and serve Whisk cornmeal until smooth then spread on top of beef mixture and sprinkle with cheese. Bake until cheese is melted and browned, about 10 minutes. Meanwhile, halve romaine hearts. Mix remaining vinegar with 2 tablespoons oil; season with salt and pepper. Drizzle over lettuce. Enjoy!