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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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Blooming Onion with Hatch Chile and Cheese

A healthier version of the blooming onion - Baked blooming onion with New Mexico chile and cheese | mjskitchen.com

 

Blooming onions are normally all about the fried crispy batter and the dipping sauces. This baked blooming onion is all about the onion and the chile. The following recipe turns a normal sweet onion into a sweet and spicy blooming onion.  Just top an onion “bloom” with a generous amount of Hatch chile, bake, top with some cheese and bake again.  The result – a tender sweet onion infused with the flavor and spiciness of roasted chile and finished off with gooey cheese.

Serve as a side dish or over rice for a vegetarian meal.

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One Pot Meal – Navy Beans, Green Chile, and Corn

A hearty one pot meal with navy beans, green chile, corn, tomatoes and a host of other goodness. mjskitchen.com

 

It’s green chile time here in New Mexico!!!!  They have started picking chile in Hatch and other parts of southern New Mexico, and soon to be picking further north.  So to celebrate the season, I’m partnering with The Hatch Chile Store to bring you a new recipe that uses a generous amount of roasted Hatch chile.  The recipe below yields a hearty, one pot meal with navy beans, green chile, and corn, tomatoes, and a few other savory ingredients. It’s spicy comfort food.  If you already have the navy beans cooked and the green chile roasted and peeled, then it takes less than 30 minutes to bring this dish together from start to finish.

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How To Make Honey Butter

How To Make Honey Butter #honey #butter @mjskitchen

Honey… who doesn’t love honey? I’ve always been fascinated by the production of honey and how hard all those little honey bees work. Did you know that the average worker honey bee only produces 1/12th of a teaspoon of honey in a lifetime, and that it takes two million flowers for honey bees to make one pound of honey?!   I guess I should feel guilty about eating so much honey, but since it’s the by-product of an activity of nature that has been occurring for 10 – 20 million years, somebody has to keep all that honey from going to waste.

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Olive Brine Hot Pepper Sauce

Pepper sauce made with Pimenta Reaper Peppers and olive brine #hot #Sauce @mjskitchen

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Last fall my friends from Fords Fiery Foods and Plants sent me some antep aci dolma peppers and Pimenta Reaper Peppers.  If you remember, I made red chile cheese tamales with the antep aci dolmas, but kept you hanging on the reapers. The reapers were smokin’ HOT making them ideal for either a hot sauce or a pepper sauce.  I tried both.  With half of them, I attempted to make a fermented hot sauce like Tabasco.  Unfortunately, it didn’t work.  However, with the other half of the peppers, I made an olive brine hot pepper sauce which, was not only remarkably easy to make, but uniquely delicious! This hot pepper sauce has the heat and the flavor from the pimenta reapers complemented by the salty flavor of green olive brine.  However, as with most hot pepper sauces, any smokin’ hot chile pepper that you like would work.

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Roasted Fennel Salad with Cranberry Balsamic

A delightful fennel salad of roasted fennel,feta, pomegranate seeds, sprouts, and a drizzle of cranberry balsamic #fennel #salad @mjskitchen mjskitchen.com

Inspiration for a new recipe can come in different forms and from different sources, which is the case with this fennel salad.  Back in August I saw Soni’s Food Indian Spice Roasted Fennel and pinned it as a reminder to make it one day.  Then a few weeks ago when I dropped into the Santa Fe Olive Oil & Balsamic Company for a purchase and a tasting, I was asked if I would create a recipe and write a post on one of its products – specifically its Cranberry Balsamic vinegar.  After tasting this awesome balsamic and going through several different ideas for a recipe, I lit upon the marriage of Soni’s roasted fennel with the cranberry balsamic and thus this Roasted Fennel Salad with Cranberry Balsamic was born.

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Red Chile Cheese Tamales

Red Chile Cheese Tamales #tamales mjskitchen.com

 

A mix of spicy red chiles, onion, garlic, and cheese give these vegetarian Red Chile Cheese Tamales a savory, chile sweet and spicy flavor that make truly killer tamales.  The flavor and texture of these tamales are so good that no sauce, salsa, or toppings are needed.

When I first started making these red chile cheese tamales, I used roasted fresh New Mexico red chile and Parrano cheese.  Recently I used Turkish antep aci dolma peppers (peppers in bowl) that I received from my friends at Fords Fiery Foods and Plants. These peppers paired with cheddar cheddar yield a more exotic tamale’, richer and a little sweeter than the New Mexico reds which have a fruity and more earthy flavor.

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The Loop to Pie Town, New Mexico

Pie Town, New Mexico | mjskitchen.com

 

Have you ever driven 2.5 hours for a piece of pie?  People do it quite often here in New Mexico and some people drive even longer.  Last week Bobby and I took the day off and drove to Pie Town, New Mexico, for lunch.  Pie Town is on Hwy 60, west of Socorro, NM and north of the Gila National Forest. It’s one of those towns that if you end up there, then that’s because you were headed there.  Why else would you be out in the middle of nowhere?

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Coconut Crusted Tofu and Pineapple Bites

Coconut crusted tofu with pineapple and sweet chili sauce makes a great appetizer | mjskitchen.com

These Coconut Crusted Tofu and Pineapple Bites were inspired by two completely different sources – Soni’s Food’s Coconut Crusted Tofu with Spicy Mango and Cucumber Topping and this very cool Hot and Cold Soapstone Serving Platter from uncommongoods.  Wanting to incorporate more tofu into our diet, I got really excited when I saw Soni’s recipe and just had to give it a try. Unfortunately, the mango I had was not very good, so instead, I zoned in on the fresh pineapple sitting on the counter and started thinking about how I could use it instead.  Literally, a few minutes later this complimentary serving platter was delivered to my door and everything just fell into place.

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