What do Green Apples, Sage & Hatch Green Chiles have in common? Why...my Hatch Green Chile Stew of course!
When cooking up some Spicy foods & using Hatch Green Chiles I've been testing the limits of dishes which I can mix in these fleeting seasonal favorites. Gloria Chadwick of Foods & Flavors of San Antonio has even created a new blog to pay tribute to this quintessential pepper!
Excitement was in the air the last 2 weeks at our local Grocery stores & markets as the famed Hatch Green Chile Peppers arrived in Texas. So much was the excitement when Hornsfan called me, that I rushed to our grocery store to see if the Hatch Peppers had arrived & had started roasting yet. I'm certain the produce people at our grocery store were thrilled to be rid of the crazy woman who seemed to be stalking them for hot peppers! The New Mexico Hatch Chile folks were even giving away CDs of cooking demos & helpful chile pepper advice. After living South of the Border our Pepper consumption has jumped a heat level or two! When the peppers hit the markets here they are hard to miss as most of the grocers set up a large gas or wood roasting pit. As the Chile Peppers roast they are turned to ensure even roasting & are manned by someone standing nearby with water to keep the flames from getting out of hand. Roasted, blackened & cleaned the Chiles are the perfect addition to so many dishes. How did I know the delectable peppers added enough heat enough at our house? My husband was eating his second bowl of my Green Stew when he had to keep wiping his forehead...one of those hurts so good meals!
The history of the Hatch is a bit murky since the origin somewhere close to 1896 when New Mexico rancher Emilio Ortega carried pepper seeds back to California which became the Anaheim Pepper....those seeds may have indeed been from what was later known as the Hatch Chile. Hybridized, refined & widely touted, the Hatch Chile Pepper is only from Hatch, New Mexico & can have quite a kick when compared to the somewhat milder Anaheim cousin. It is worth noting that these Peppers are in season once each year so if you are lucky enough to find them buy enough to roast an extra pound or two & freeze them. We have eaten them mixed into countless bowls of guacamole as this is probably one our favorite Hatch appetizer to eat this time of year. For a little more information about Hatch Chile Peppers check out this New Mexico site! I'm thinking we might have to try whipping up a batch of "Hatch-a-ritas" before the season is over.
Hatch Green Chile Stew
2 1/2 lbs Pork Loin, trimmed & cut into 1-inch cubes
2 Tbsp Olive Oil
1 Med Onion, diced
2 Cups Water
8 Hatch Green Chile Peppers, roasted, seeded & chopped
4 Cloves Garlic, minced
1 Red Bell Pepper
3 Green Granny Smith Apples, cored, seeded & chopped
5 Fresh Sage leaves, cut into slices or thin strips
1 Tsp. Salt
1/2 Tsp. Celery Salt
Queso Cojita, semi soft Mexican white cheese, grated
Heat oil in large wrought iron dutch oven or large heavy skillet. Brown pork, add the onion, pepper & garlic. Add 2 cups of water, green apples, Hatch Green Chile Peppers, sage & salts. Simmer stew covered for 30 min. Remove lid & simmer for 30 min more till pork is tender. Add water as needed no more than 1 cup at a time. The stew should be thick not thin & soup-like. Serve garnished with Mexican Cojita cheese either crumbled or grated.
Yields 4 servings
This recipe is based on a recipe which was wildly popularized in San Antonio Texas back in the mid 1960's. My mother has a worn Sunday school church cookbook from that time period which this is recipe is based on. This corn bread really can be a meal alone. Enjoy!
Hatch Green Chile Corn Bread
1 Cup Stone Ground Cornmeal
1 tsp Salt
1/2 tsp Baking Soda
1 Cup Buttermilk
1/2 Cup Melted Shortening or Bacon Renderings
1 Cup Cream Style Corn
1/2 lb. Grated Cheddar Cheese
2 Cloves Garlic, minced
1 Small Onion, diced
2 Roasted, Seeded Green Chile Peppers diced**
In a bowl stir together cornmeal, soda, salt. Beat eggs slightly & add to buttermilk; stir this into the dry ingredients. Add melted shortening or bacon fat. Stir in cream style corn. Mix, add grated cheese, onion, garlic & chile peppers to the cornmeal mixture. Pour into a greased baking pan (9 X 13 inches) Bake @ 375* for 35 min. or till cornbread tests done & is golden brown.
**2 diced pickled jalapenos may be substituted.
Green Chile Dressing
1/3 c. lightly packed cilantro with stems
2 roasted, seeded Green Chilies, chopped
3Tbsp white wine vinegar
3 cloves garlic
1 tsp oregano
1/2 tsp salt,
1/2 tsp sugar
2 Tbsp mayonnaise
Mix in blender till smooth...makes 1 1/4 cup
I served this dressing over a simple Spinach Salad with sliced onion, sauteed shrimp & garnished with sliced almonds.