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Slow-Cooked Red Beans

Slow cooked pot of spicy red beans. mjskitchen.com

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When it comes to red beans, it seems that the larger kidney bean gets most of the attention.  Of course this could possibly be due to the classic red beans and rice, “an emblematic dish of Louisiana Creole cuisine“.  To be honest, red beans and rice is normally our go to dish for red beans.  However, sometimes I like to cook up the small red bean.  It’s more tender than the kidney bean and has a sweeter, more delicate flavor, in my opinion.

This red bean recipe yields a flavorful bowl of tender beans that’s savory, spicy and quite versatile. As with most beans, we love to eat these as just a bowl of beans with some cornbread or tortillas and maybe a topping or two. But you could also add them to salads or soups, serve them on top of a bowl of rice, or wrap them in a tortilla and smother with red chile.  Lots of possibilities…

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Hatch Chile Fiesta Bread

Hatch Chile Fiesta Bread is a yeast bread made with whole wheat and AP flours, and Hatch red and green chile. | mjskitchen.com

 

This Hatch Chile Fiesta Bread was inspired by the fiesta rolls I used to get at The Flying Star in Albuquerque whenever I ordered the breakfast egg sandwich.  The rolls were yeast rolls with green chile and cheese, which, as you can imagine, made for a very tasty bite of sandwich. Since Bobby and I love a good bread, I tackled making a loaf of yeast bread with chile and cheese.  It took a couple of loaves to get the texture right and solve the moisture problem created by the chile, but once that problem was solved, I knew I would be making many more loaves of this fiesta bread.

Because of the chile, this Hatch chile fiesta bread is more moist than most yeast breads and less dense; however, the flavor is awesome and it is the best bread ever for a grilled cheese turkey sandwich.  It also makes a tasty egg in a basket breakfast as well as a breakfast egg sandwich.  If you include hot chile in the mix, you get a nice spicy kick with every bite.  To provide this spicy kick I used some of the hot Sandia chile I got from The Hatch Chile Store. as well as some of their medium Big Jim chile.

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The Hatch Chile Store – From Farm to Table

The Hatch Chile Store Logo | mjskitchen.comRecently, my friend Su Anne and I had the privilege of traveling to Hatch chile country to explore the vast agriculture of the area, visit the The Hatch Chile Store and meet its owners – Preston and Elaine.  Preston and Elaine are young entrepreneurs who started The Hatch Chile Store because of their mutual love of green chile and the Hatch Valley in southern New Mexico.  Their family history in the Hatch Valley dates back over 5 generations which essentially means that Hatch chile is in their blood.  In just a few years time, they have put together a successful company that shares their love of chile with the rest of the world through an online shop. To learn more about Preston and Elaine and their business, check out these links:  Our Story and Our Team.

A field of chile in Hatch, New Mexico | mjskitchen.com

As part of our visit, Su Anne and I traveled through the Hatch Valley, a beautiful valley that runs along the Rio Grande from north of Hatch, New Mexico (NM), to Las Cruces, NM. We saw fields and fields of chile along with cotton, alfalfa, and hundreds of pecan groves.  The pictures below attempt to share our experience by taking you from the Hatch chile fields through the process of roasting and packaging chile at The Hatch Chile Store.  By placing an order online, you could have Hatch chile on your table in just a few days.

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Smoky Apricot Barbecue Sauce

A spicy and smoky apricot barbecue sauce. Great with smoked ham, pork and chicken. #apricot #sauce #BBQ @mjskitchen

Does barbecue sauce really need ketchup or tomatoes to be called a barbecue sauce?  If so, then I’m breaking the rules with this Smoky Apricot Barbecue Sauce.  This sauce has most everything that one would find in a BBQ sauce, except for a tomato or tomato based product.  The tomato is replaced with apricot, but other common BBQ ingredients – vinegar, mustard and a bunch of chile powders – remain, turning sweet apricots into a smoky and spicy sauce for topping BBQ sandwiches and basting for a variety of meats and possibly vegetables.

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Red Chile Chilaquiles and SE Arizona-Part II

Red chile chilaquiles made with New Mexico red chile, queso fresco and egg. mjskitchen.com

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Chilaquiles (chē-lä-ˈkē-lās) is a traditional Mexican dish made with fried corn tortilla chips, a red or green chile sauce or salsa, cheese, fried eggs and complementary toppings.  I was introduced to a Sonoran version of red chile chilaquiles during a recent visit to Tucson. The Sonoran chilaquiles were as simple as they could get – corn tortillas with a tomato-based chile sauce, queso fresco and fried eggs, served with a side of black beans. Simple and hearty, though not spicy, and a very tasty way to start the day.

Following the simplicity of the Sonoran chilaquiles, I’ve been making red chile chilaquiles at home using New Mexico red chile sauce, a Mexican style cheese, some simple toppings, and fried egg. Because there are so many toppings that  complement this dish, you can change the flavors of this dish each time you make it.  It’s a meal you can make over and over again and never get tired of.

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Ideas for Your Cinco de Mayo Party

Spicy Cinco de Mayo recipes for your Cinco de Mayo Party #cincodemayo #chile #mexican @mjskitchen

 

Still working on your menu for Cinco de Mayo?  Hopefully, this list of Cinco de Mayo recipes will tempt you to add a couple more dishes.  The spiciness and the flavors in these recipes will have your guests dancing in the kitchen.

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Egg Quesadilla with Red Chile and Cheese

An egg quesadilla with red chile and cheese. An easy, high protein breakfast. #egg #quesadilla mjskitchen.com

 

Whenever I can’t think of something for breakfast or lunch and I don’t want to spend a lot of time cooking, this egg quesadilla is my old standby.  It has only four ingredients – eggs, corn tortillas, cheese and a red chile paste – all of which can be found in my refrigerator at most any time. This egg quesadilla takes about 15 minutes making it a quick & easy breakfast or lunch.  In addition to being quick & easy, it’s a very tasty meal and provides an ample amount of protein.

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Chile de Arbol Hot Sauce

Spicy Chile de Arbol Hot Sauce - Use a dash or two for any dish that needs a bit of spice | mjskitchen.com

 

Chile de Arbol Hot Sauce is a great little sauce for when you just need a dash or two to spice up eggs, soup, or a bowl of beans.  Normally, you might grab a bottle of Tabasco or Sriracha. However, with a few ounces of HOT dried chile pods like de arbol chiles, you can make your own hot sauce.  This Chile de Arbol Hot Sauce yields the heat and a unique flavor one wants in a hot sauce, but doesn’t require days or weeks of fermentation. With a little bit of effort and a small amount of time over a three day period, you can create a very spicy hot sauce with the natural smokiness of the de arbol chile.

Excerpt of comment from reader:

“Magnificent recipe and magnificent result. . . The taste was extraordinary, and better than any sauce I have previously made and better than any store bought sauce I purchased in the past…”  (You can read the full comment below.)

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Black Beans, Shiitake, and Fried Polenta with Red Chile

A hearty vegetarian meal with black beans, shiitake, fried polenta and feta topped with New Mexico red chile @redchile #shiitake #blackbean #vegetarian @mjskitchen

Black beans, shiitake mushrooms, and red chile is a delightful combination of flavors that we discovered many years ago.  Through the years I’ve made black bean and shiitake enchiladas and burritos, both smothered in red chile.  Now we have a new dish, which is lighter, but hearty enough and certainly tasty enough to please your favorite carnivores and vegetarians.  This black bean, shiitake and red chile dish is served on top of fried polenta which provides a crunchy texture and an additional layer of flavor to its many layers.  Top with a little feta cheese and cilantro for even more goodness.

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