Sunday, September 14, 2014

Roasted New Mexico Hatch Chilies

I'm a fiend for roasted chilies!  A few years ago, while Vince and I were on a roadtrip to Northern Arizona, we came across a supermarket in Flagstaff roasting chilies in the parking lot.  I bought what was probably a five pound bag of them and ate them on everything! (I should note that the nice young checker who sold them to me assured me that I was purchasing mild chilies. He was so wrong! They were flaming hot but I still couldn't stop eating them.)  

The variety I ate in Northern Arizona was a Hatch or New Mexico chile. 
These long green chiles are grown in the small town of Hatch, New Mexico and are considered premium green chiles. Every year there is a Hatch Chile Festival on Labor Day where up to 30,000 people come to the little town to buy and eat these delicious chiles. Hatch chiles are sometime confused with Anaheim or California chiles which were brought from New Mexico in the early 1900's and were bred to be more mild to suit the taste of Californians at the time. They were originally brought to Anaheim, hence the association/name. Hatch and New Mexico chiles can be used for the same dishes as California and Anaheim chiles but they are significantly hotter.

I scrambled them with eggs, made enchiladas, put them on burgers and grilled chicken. You get the idea. Five pounds of chilies go a long way. 

Freshly roasted Hatch or Anaheim chilies are so much better than the bland canned variety and they are quite easy to make. The video below will give you an overview.

Once you've roasted your chiles, you might want to try this recipe I found in the Seattle Times for Green Chili Breakfast Quesadillas or maybe as the weather cools, you'd like to try some Chile Verde instead! Either way, you won't be disappointed, I promise.

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