Hatch Chile 101
Chiles grown in Hatch, New Mexico are the most celebrated of the green chiles due to their short season & excellent flavour. Roasting them first brings out a deep smoky flavour which makes them a perfect addition to chili, salsas, soups, stews, cornbread or as a topping for Green Chile Cheese Burgers.
How to Roast
- Roast the chiles within a few days of purchasing them.
- Position a rack 4 to 6 inches below the heating element of your broiler. Preheat the broiler to high or 400° to 450°F.
- Rinse the chiles and dry them with a towel. Arrange the chiles in a single layer on an aluminum foil-lined baking sheet(s).
- Place the chiles under the broiler and roast until the skin is charred and blistered, about 3 to 5 minutes. Avoid completely blackening the chiles; you’re looking for them to be about 60% to 70% charred. Using tongs, flip the chiles over and broil on the other side until the skin is charred and blistered, about 3 to 5 minutes.
- Remove the chiles from the broiler and place them in a paper bag, food-safe plastic bag, or heat-safe bowl. Close the bag or cover the bowl, and let stand for 10 to 15 minutes. The steam will help loosen the peel from the chiles.
How to Peel & Prepare
- The chiles may be peeled and seeded prior to freezing or later, as needed.
- Wear gloves to protect your hands and avoid touching your eyes.
- To peel, pull the skin off the chile; it should come off fairly easily.
- Seeds and membranes are most easily scraped out with a spoon. I
- If you want, you can also chop the chiles into smaller pieces.
How to Store
- Chiles should be completely cool before freezing them.
- For food safety, whole chiles can be cooled at room temperature for up to 2 hours after roasting them, or refrigerated for up to 3 days.
- Seeded or chopped chiles are generally cool enough by the time you finish processing them.
- Use plastic freezer bags or shallow containers, which help prevent freezer burn.
- Arrange whole chiles in a single, flat layer to ensure even freezing and to prevent them from sticking together.
- If using bags, press as much air out as possible.
- Alternatively, you can freeze the chiles in a single layer on a tray, then transfer them to a container once frozen solid.
- Chopped chiles may be frozen in ice cube trays and then transferred to a container. Store the chiles in the freezer for up to a year and thaw in the refrigerator before using.
See below for two tasty recipes that you can make with hatch chiles!