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Green Chile Stew

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I recently ordered a bunch of chiles from New Mexico, and I have copious amounts of Hatch green chile right now. I've already made some excellent carne adovada with some of the red chile; now it's time to play with the green.

First thing I think I'm going to make with it is some green chile stew. I've made it before with good results, although I can't recall the particular recipe I looked at. Can't even remember what meat I used, if any... I should write these things down. Kind of leaning towards beef, but I could make my own broth if I used a whole chicken.

The thing I like about this forum is that quite a few folks seem to know what they're talking about when it comes to food. I'd just like to bring up this topic here to see if anyone has any tips or anything otherwise insightful as it applies to green chile stew.

Anyways... just trying to bounce some ideas off other folks. I'm going to start browsing my own recipes tomorrow, so maybe we can have a discussion about this very important issue facing our nation today - green chile stew.

Oh, and for accompaniments... anyone got any better suggestions than cornbread or tortillas?

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  1. Okay, to start, it's pork. ;D

    But first things first. You have to roast your green chiles, assuming that haven't been already, but you want to make the skins blistering hot and black, and then toss them in a paperbag to sweat for about 15 minutes. You can do this with your broiler, your grill, or the flame on your gas stove, you choose.

    What you want is for the skins to separate from the pepper like (or kinda like) a slipper. When the chile roasting guys are out, they have tumbling drums over fire that both scorchs the skins and peels them at the same time. (Might I just add- this isn't really chile season... They are usually at their peak a bit later in the summer).

    Anyway, once your peppers are peeled and seeded (I usually don't seed, I like the heat), dice them coarsely.

    Now, here's where we can resort to fisticuffs, but I hope it won't come to that. My Chile Verde is pretty simple. I get a nice pork butt (shoulder), and cube it. You want a cut that has some fat on it. I toss the pork with flour, salt and pepper, and brown in batches. Vegetable oil is fine. I use duck fat, because I can.

    During the last batch, I toss in lots of slivered garlic (why mince? too much work!), and shallot or onion. when the meat seems to be browning, but not burning, I add about 1/2 cup tequila to deglaze.

    Then add the rest of the pork back, stir it up, and chicken broth to just barely cover. Let this simmer slowly for at least 3 hours.

    I like a thin broth, meaty chile verde. Others may chime in differently, but that's the beauty of opinions.

    4 Replies
    1. re: cheesemonger

      When do you put the chiles in?

      1. re: crawfish

        oops- the chiles go in with the chicken broth, etc. Mostly it's about browning the pork in batches, then combining the whole thing together in the pot and letting simmer.

        Sorry about that.

        1. re: cheesemonger

          dear cheesemonger, your a great chef.

      2. re: cheesemonger

        I like your approach, and I'd definitely be using duck fat if I had any laying around. I asked for a tub of duck fat for Christmas, and my mom thought I was joking so she didn't get me any. All this mail order food gets expensive...

        I probably should have been more specific about my chiles. They're already roasted, peeled and diced. Bought them frozen, and I only thaw them when I'm ready to use them. I really need a deep freeze - there's little room for much else other than chile and ice cubes in my freezer right now. The anaheim chiles they sell in the grocery stores around here don't pack any heat, and I figured the only way to get good chile is to order it directly from the source.

        I may not get to go through with the whole roasting ritual, and I wouldn't be surprised if I paid a premium to have them prepared for me, but I think it balances out with the shipping costs (figure it would cost more to ship whole chiles than frozen bags). Plus, it is pretty quick and easy to thaw some out and throw it directly into whatever I'm cooking.

      3. You may have copious amounts of Hatch, but not from this season. They are babies on the vine until September. Teaming them with split-hoofed animals, pork is king. Tell us more.

        7 Replies
        1. re: Veggo

          Of course not. I buy them frozen. Still works pretty well.

          1. re: AbdulSheikhMohammed

            ASM, Is there a brand or source of frozen Hatches that can be purchased year round? My annual stash of locally (La Veta, CO) roasted and frozen has never lasted this long into the year.

            1. re: Veggo

              I ordered mine from http://www.dagiftbasket.com/store/cat... .

              They aren't the same ones you get in the freezer section in NM grocery stores. That's what I was expecting.

              Their dried pods are excellent too... not too dry, like the ones I sometimes find at my grocery.

              Reasonably priced too... The shipping is the only thing that really makes it a bit expensive.

              1. re: AbdulSheikhMohammed

                Great resource. It will no doubt be an expensive bowl of pre-season "green". And they do can the Hatches, too! I need some of those for hurricane preparations in Florida this summer. After last summer with no hurricanes, I ate my emergency canned hams, for two months.

                1. re: Veggo

                  It's pretty much mail order or the 4-oz. cans of Ortega green chiles for me. The anaheims they sell in the produce section are ridiculously weak... decent on flavor, but absolutely no heat...

              2. re: Veggo

                V- there's a brand of chiles out there that I use when it's not season, and they are Bueno Hatch Green chiles. They aren't sold everywhere, but I can get them in the freezer section of most boulder/Denver groceries that I've looked at. They come in a little tub, and they are quite good- roasted, peeled, seeded and chopped, and they come in different heats. The website is www.buenofoods.com, and you can write them about availability in your area.

                1. re: cheesemonger

                  They sold those in the grocery stores in Albuquerque. Pretty decent stuff. Wish they sold them east of the Mississippi River...

          2. I keep mine simple and do it in the crockpot.

            Pork butt cut in 1 1/2" pieces
            quartered russett potatoes
            chopped hatch chilies
            chopped white onion
            tomatillos (ran through the food processor to salsa consistency)
            garlic
            salt
            pepper

            1. You are sooo fortunate to have those Hatch chiles - I always opt for powder due to cost but long for the real deal.

              I'm in agreement with cheesemonger and Veggo - pork is the way to go. (I've also had good results from chicken thighs). I like white beans (sorry, chile purists), lots of cumin & fresh cilantro & a garnish of fried corn tortilla strips. This is my White Chile - for my Red, it's always beef.

              1 Reply
              1. re: spycegurl

                Yeah, pork seems like it would be more authentic. I was thinking beef because that's what I use in my regular stews, and I was considering chicken because I don't often get to make my own broth. Plus, I've been eating pork butt all week (carne adovada).

                But I like your idea of using beef in a red chile stew. Guess I'd just start from my standby red chile sauce recipe, brown some meat, add some veggies and broth, and go from there, eh?

              2. Ahhh ,something near,and dear to my heart!,I am from Roswell,N.M. in the Pecos valley,1 of the 2 major Green chile producers here in the U.S.(the other being the the area where Hatch is located) .For a basic Green Chile(not a stew,but far brighter,ans tastier,with more uses IMHO) start with a little oil( i prefer bacon grease,may not be your thing)add fresh onion, cook over medium heat until it starts to become clear,then add fresh Garlic to taste, immediately add tomatoes, i use whole peeled,lower the heat to a slow simmer,allow the mix to cook about 3-5 min add your thawed chile, then let simmer 5-10 more min, add salt to taste,also if you want it hotter than your chile is red pepper flakes to taste before the simmer, will do the trick with out "coloring" the flavor.Ok now that that is done here is what my Grandmother,and now i do with this wonderful stuff, if you want meat: serve it with Fried Chicken, or Pork chops, or the thing i usually do is add browned ground beef to the pot before simmering. You ask'd about what to serve it with, well normally we would have fried potatoes, beans(pinto,slow cooked with some form of pork fat,onion ,and garlic) and some sort of cheese usually extra sharp cheddar, or VELVEETA, yep velveeta, it is absolutely killer with chile, as for Tortillas, most you buy in the store are horrible, my Grandmother always made hers from scratch, as far as i am concerned there is only one acceptable substitute,and that is the Tortillas from Albuquerque Tortilla factory, for me these are a must as i was taught to ear the Tortilla in pieces about 1/2 the size of your hand, put one in each hand,making a scoop, and use these to eat the meal . One more thing, i always make enough to have leftovers, with the aforementioned things in any combo mixed with scrambled eggs you have the makings of a killer b'frast burrito, oh yeah when scrambling your eggs ,and Chile add a torn up corn tortilla to the mix...the flavor is awesome!, well i hope this helps, and i wasn't too long winded, but i truly love Green Chile!.

                1. An update...

                  I ended up using a few of the recommendations I got here. To start, I chopped up some pork butt into small cubes and dredged them in flour and some toasted, ground cumin and coriander. For fat, this gave me a good excuse to fry up a package of bacon. This got me through about 2 of the 3 batches of pork I browned... ended up having to use some butter towards the middle. Meanwhile, at least I had some bacon to munch on. Mmmmm.... bacon. The little fried pork bits were pretty damned good on their own.

                  Towards the end of my last batch of pig bits, I threw in 3 chopped onions and about 1.5 heads of garlic, mashed. Sauteed them a bit, and added the rest of my pig bits back in. Turned up the heat and cooked the hell out of this for a bit, then I deglazed with a good couple of glugs of tequila.

                  At this point, I decided to add in a drained 28-oz. can of whole tomatoes, since that is what I had on hand. That, and some oregano and bay leaves. Then I added about 1.5 lbs. green chile (to about 2 pounds of meat... I'm still not convinced this is the best ratio, but it still turned out pretty well). Then I added some chicken broth and simmered it a couple hours.

                  I ended up deep frying some small potato cubes and dusting them with salt and cayenne. I stirred a few of these in to my finished bowl of chile stew along with some Velveeta cubes (excellent recommendation, btw).

                  Also, I found some pretty decent raw flour tortillas at Wal Mart (yes, I know... but there are a few things that I can only get there, and my boss had told me about these tortillas. I make quite an effort to keep my Wal Mart dealings to a minimum. Only buy from there what others don't carry, etc.). They're completely uncooked, and you basically just nuke them in a hot cast iron skillet for a couple of minutes. They're pretty damn good for store-bought.

                  Overall, it was pretty damn good. Since I cooked it so long, the chile dissolved into the stew for the most part. Next time, I'd probably save about 1/3 of the chile and add it in right towards the end for the sake of texture. That, or I suppose I could have just added more chile at the end anyways. I definitely noticed a reduction in heat on the leftovers... Maybe a little raw chile right at the end is a step in the right direction...

                  Anyways... thanks for the tips here.

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: AbdulSheikhMohammed

                    a promethian effort. cut back on the tomatoes next time. buen provecho

                    1. re: AbdulSheikhMohammed

                      Excellent! Thanks for the update! Sounds like a tasty batch of hatch.