Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Hatch Chile Time

 Everyone knows the national seasons, even if the spring-summer-fall-winter quartet vary in local length or intensity (I'm thinking about Maine's eight-month winter and Phoenix's summer days of 117F.)

But Hill Country residents are gifted with more.

Among my favorites is Hatch Chile Season, a time with a smoky tang to the air and a tingle to the tongue, two weeks in August at HEB, the national grocery store of Texas. 

Hatch, New Mexico chiles (long green pod-type chiles, relative of Anaheim peppers but more transcendent), fresh from Hatch valley farms, roasted in front of HEBs and upscale cousin Central Markets all around Texas.  

My long-time friends might remember my virgin Hatch experience.  Since then I've learned a few things.  Among them that akin to eating chocolate, Hatch chile-ation is better the more we do it.

Which is a good thing, since there are pounds of roasted Hatch chiles in my freezer...

Copyright 2009-2011 Kathleen Scott, for Hill Country Mysteries. Unauthorized reproduction is prohibited.


  1. Right now, leaving every grocery store here (even driving down some roads), the scent of roasting chile can be intoxicating! A favorite thing here is when you get home with your roasted gunny sack, you put some on a warmed, fresh tortilla, and devour.

    That's cool you can now get roasted chiles there!

  2. I looked up your virgin Hatch chili experience and it seems you freeze them one to a bag. They must be Hot!

    We have a chili roaster at our farmer's market, but since I live here in the land of all things gourmet, that translates to expensive. I make the budget variety by charring my chili's on my wood-fire BBQ.

    I am in awe of your 7lbs in the freezer! x0 N2

  3. Hi Kathleen,
    And what about the four seasons of Texas, which are, as far as I know:
    winter, summer, summer and summer!
    Best regards,

  4. Hmmmmm...not too sure about this. I would have to have a chilli guide for my first experience.


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