Thursday, July 25, 2013

Big Fishies: Chile Relleno

The Actress called me last month to express her condolences about TFIL's passing.  At that time we talked about getting together.  The Actress is 7 months pregnant, and I haven't seen her during her entire pregnancy!   She offered to make the trip down to us, but I know that at 7 months pregnant, a long time in the car wouldn't be all the comfortable for her.  We've wanted to visit the Aquarium of the Pacific for a long time, so I suggested that as a nice half-way meeting point.

Plus it was a great experience for The Actress and Armani to get a glimpse at what their future holds in store for them by spending a whole day with a toddler.

Thatbaby was ever so excited to see the fishies.  As soon as we got in, he ran and pressed his face up against the nearest tank to watch.  The Aquarium is a fantastic experience for children of all ages because it is "hand friendly."  Thatbaby got a kick out of being able to touch the exhibits - and so did The Actress and I!

It was especially exciting to be able to touch jellyfish!

And there was a plethora of giant crabs throughout the Aquarium.

When we found the seal tank, he didn't want to leave.  He asked for a snack and sat and just watched them play.  He similarly enjoyed the sea otters.  Guess he's a fan of sea mammals.

In addition to the water animals, the Aquarium has a lorikeet exhibit and Thatbaby was very impressed with the colorful birds who came close, flying right over our heads and landing on people beside us.

Thatbaby wasn't terribly fascinated with the other birds - the penguins.

Although he developed a mild obsession with their statute counterparts.  He gave the big one a hug.  (Did you know that Emperor Penguins can grow to 4 feet tall?  That's bigger than my little boy!)

The medium sized penguin got a head pet.

And the smallest penguin was his new best friend forever.  We couldn't get him to leave.  The little guy got pets, kisses, Thatbaby sat with him -

And then Thatbaby sat ON him.  (Y'all remember how much he loves to sit on animal figures, right?)

We headed over to the shark exhibit to give some sharks and rays a pet. 

Then we went to the BIG tanks to check out the non-pettable sharks and sea turtles.

By the end of the day, Thatbaby had really warmed up to Armani.  They became best buds at lunch, holding hands walking back to the Aquarium. And Thatbaby cuddled up close to him to watch the scuba diver.

The Actress was certainly worn out from the day - which makes sense because she was doing everything we were doing, WHILE growing a human being.  But she smiled through it all and didn't complain about chasing Thatbaby around.  I am so excited for her and Armani.  They are going to be amazing parents.

Thatbaby slept the whole way home.  Poor little guy was completely tuckered out by his fishy adventures.  He woke up hungry and cranky.  I had the perfect solution for that.  Thatbaby called this "cheese for dinner" but Thatboy and I called it Chile Relleno.  

Chile Relleno
4 poblano chiles
4 roma tomatoes
olive oil
salt and pepper

1 lb monterey jack
3 eggs
2 Tbsp flour, divided
1 cup canola oil
1/4 cup butter
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 Tbsp chk broth

  1. Preheat the oven to 425.  Heat a grill pan over medium heat.  Char chiles and then place in a plastic bag for 10 minutes.  Cut them down the middle and remove the seeds.
  2. While the peppers are cooling, cook the tomatoes.  Cut an x on the top of each tomato and place in a baking dish.  Drizzle with olive oil, salt and pepper and cook for 15 minutes.
  3. Stuff the peppers with the cheese (using toothpicks to hold them together)
  4. Separate the eggs.  Beat the egg whites with an electric mixture until soft peaks form.  Beat in 1 Tbsp flour and egg yolks.
  5. Heat the canola oil in a saute pan over medium heat.  Dip the peppers in the egg batter and fry until golden on both sides.
  6. In a separate pan, melt the butter.  Stir in the remaining flour and cook until bubbly and paste-like.
  7. Stir in the tomatoes, garlic, and chicken broth. Smash the tomatoes to create a sauce. Simmer for 5 minutes and then pour over the chile rellenos.


  1. We are sort of close to the Monterey Bay Aquarium...we need to take Ellie!

  2. The thing that always fascinates me about the aquarium is the number of just downright ugly sea creatures there are! Those bottom dwellers and eels? Icky. We can't wait to take N though!

  3. Your little guy is too cute. What an awesome day out. I really want to go to the aquarium now, I havent been since I was about his age!

  4. What a fun way to spend a day with Thatbaby and friends. As for the Chiles Rellenos Thatbaby has an adventurous palate.

  5. ThatBaby's curiosity is so adorable!