Green Chiles In The House

On Friday as I was leaving my haircut, I had to run next door to Wegmans to get a few things (milk for the kiddo, half and half for the elixir of life, that sort of thing). As I crossed the parking lot, I smelled an aroma that sent me straight to heaven: roasting Hatch chilies.

Growing up, these were a staple in our house and they found their way into just about everything the way most people use onions. Or they found their way onto a slice of bread (with an ever so thin layer of mayo) for the world's most perfect open face sandwich.

When we moved east, we were pleased to see that many grocery stores carried them in cans...right up to the point when we realized how expensive they were out here. And rather abruptly they became a treat instead of a staple. Periodically, mom ordered a large quantity of cans and it was like Christmas came early as the rationing got less strict.

Now, if you know Tim (and I've probably mentioned it here, as well) you know that he's a spice wuss. (That's an official title, by the way.) Tim gets his "spicy" from too much pepper. So chilies are a much more rare occurrence here than they are at mom's. Even the green ones which really aren't hot, they're just yummy, unless you're Tim.

Anyway, smelling those chilies roasting, I grabbed my phone and called my sister and she called my mom and before long, my sister had procured 2 cases of fresh chilies. (See, they weren't done roasting when I was there, and I had a park date with the boys, so she went back later in the day. Thus she procured them.)

Saturday afternoon, I went to her house during naptime and mom and dad came down and we slipped the chilies from their blistered skin, pulled out the seeds, and packaged them up for the freezer.

Afterward, we figured that all things being equal, we didn't save any money over buying them canned. And if you figure the work involved in peeling them, well, maybe it cost more. But still...they're fresh, not canned. And they're awfully delicious. Which is really all that matters.


Eric Siegmund said...

Hatch chile must be in season, because they've got the propane burners fired up at our local grocery and they're roasting them by the bushel. I'm going to get a batch (well, two, actually...one hot and one mild; last year, the hot ones could peel a layer off a Pyrex pan!). There's just about nothing (other than desserts, and only some of them) that's not improved by a layer of roasted hatch chile!

(But I'm still sorta surprised they're available fresh in your neck of the woods. How fortuitous!)

beth said...

The local New Mexico alumni folks have a big roast every year, but we've never gone. I'm always tempted though. :) I was kind of surprised to see them fresh outside of that myself though.