1Anaheim or poblano chile,roasted, peeled, seeded and chopped
1poundskinless, boneless fish, roughly chopped
1egg, lightly beaten
2tablespoonsminced cilantro or mint
Flour or masa harina for dusting
1white onion, peeled and quartered
4plum tomatoes, halved
3 to 4Anaheim or poblano chiles
2teaspoonsMexican oregano(regular oregano is fine)
3tablespoonsolive oil or lard
1quartfish stock, shrimp stock or chicken stock
Get a comal, griddle, cast iron pan or other heavy pan hot. Set the quartered onion, halved tomatoes and chiles on it. Char the cut sides of the tomatoes black, and all sides of the onion and chiles. Set the chiles in a plastic bag after the skins are burnt. This will help you steam the skins off. Wait 15 to 30 minutes and then peel, deseed and remove the stems of the chiles.
Put everything in a blender and puree.
Heat the lard or oil in a saucepot, then pour in the contents of the blender. It will sputter and spit, so you might want to cover the pot. Stir constantly until the fat or oil has incorporated into the sauce, then slowly pour in the stock,. stirring constantly. Add salt to taste, cover the pot and turn it to low.
Get a large pot of water to the simmering point, then add enough salt so it tastes salty.
Meanwhile, heat the lard or olive oil in a small pan and sauté the onion, chile and garlic until soft but not browned, about 5 minutes. Turn off the heat and let cool.
When the vegetables have cooled, put them into a food processor along with the remaining fish ball ingredients except the flour. Pulse to combine, or run the processor until you get a paste. Your choice. I like them finely chopped so I run the processor for a minute or so.
Form balls from the mixture about the size of a walnut or smaller. Roll in flour or masa harina and gently drop them into the simmering water. Simmer until they float, then for about 1 to 2 minutes more. When they are done, move the fish balls to the broth.
Serve the fish balls with the broth and some chopped cilantro.
Most kinds of freshwater or saltwater fish will work with this recipe.
Keys to Success
Slightly wetting your hands with water makes it easier to form perfect fish balls.
The flour or masa coating on the balls will set in the hot water, making prettier balls. Same deal if you fry them.
Any green herb can be used in place of the cilantro or mint in the balls. Pipicha, parsley, savory, pitiona, epazote, etc.
Yes, gluten free breadcrumbs will work here.
You can make the broth richer and darker by using dried ancho or guajillo chiles instead of green Anaheims. Just rehydrate them with hot water and remove the stems and seeds.