Ruth’s Squash and New Mexican Chile Casserole

This is a super easy casserole dish that my late mother-in-law Ruth Schneider used to make. It combines a common summer veggie with the zing of New Mexican chili. You may even have the veggie in your home garden. The list of ingredients is short:

2 good sized zucchini squash
1 cup or 2 4 oz cans of chopped hatch chile, green
1 cup of Colby or Cheddar cheese shredded
1 cup of seasoned bread crumbs

Pre-heat your oven to 350 degrees F. Peel, slice and boil until tender the zucchini.  Drain well.  Spray a 2-quart casserole dish with non-stick cooking spray.  Olive oil would be good.  Layer the squash, cheese and New Mexican chile, green. Add the seasoned bread crumbs to the top of the final layer.  Bake for 30 minutes or until cheese is melted and the top is a golden brown.

New Mexican Chile Meets Southern New Year Tradition

My wife is among those who out of tradition want to have some black-eyed peas on New Year’s day. She likes them and wants to eat them for “good luck.” I’m less enthusiastic about the peas and believe that it is bad luck to be superstitious.

After seeing a recipe that suggested adding black-eyed peas to home made salsa to keep the New Year tradition alive I decided to try the same with Pico de Gallo and of course include New Mexican chili.

In a medium bowl, combine the following ingredients. The amount of each item to use is only a rough guide. Feel free to adjust the amounts to suite your own taste. For example, if you aren’t real familiar with cilantro, use it sparingly at first. It can be an acquired taste. It is best to mix it all up then cover and refrigerate overnight to let the flavors marinate. Chop everything fine.

5 Roma tomatoes or about 2 cups of your favorite tomato
2 fresh jalapeno peppers. De-seed and de-vein one of them to control heat. Or don’t, your call.
4 oz can or 1/2 cup chopped Hatch chile, green.
1/4 cup each white, red, and green onion. Include tops of green onion
1/4 cup packed fresh cilantro leaves
Juice of one lime
2 tbs apple cider vinegar
2 tbs olive oil
1 tsp kosher salt plus a few grinds of fresh black pepper
1/2 cup of canned black-eyed peas rinsed

Mix well with a spoon to combine. Serve with tortilla chips. It can also be used to top hamburgers or sandwiches. Throw some on your eggs in the morning and give your day a zesty start.

Beef and New Mexican Chile Quesadillas

Quesadillas are a great way to enjoy the flavor of green New Mexican chili. Most people probably cook quesadillas in a large skillet but this recipe uses a hot oven to crisp up the otherwise floppy flour tortillas. It also uses ground beef as part of the filling but chicken, turkey, pork, veggies, or just cheese works well too. Just don’t forget the Hatch chile! Here’s what you’ll need…

1 lb of lean ground beef
1 medium onion, chopped
3/4 cup of your favorite salsa
1 (4 oz) can of chopped green Hatch chile, drained or use New Mexican chile you’ve prepared
2 cups shredded cheese such as Cheddar, Colby or Colby Jack
salt and pepper to taste
10-12 medium flour tortillas.
Preheat the oven to 450 F. In a large skillet brown the ground beef and onion over medium heat until beef is no longer pink. Pour off drippings and season with salt and pepper. Add salsa and the chopped New Mexican chile, then stir in cheese.

Spoon about a 1/4 cup of beef mixture onto half of each tortilla. Fold over. Place quesadillas on baking sheets and lightly spray tops of the tortillas with cooking spray.

Bake 8 to 10 minutes or until tortillas are slightly brown. Serve them with rice and beans or a salad and guacamole.

New Mexican Chile Stew

I’m really looking forward to the end of the summer heat and some cool evenings now that the calendar says it is fall. Not that you would know it around these parts, but I digress.

Cooler weather calls for stews and the following recipe is a pretty classic one for New Mexican  chili stew. So pull out the Dutch oven or a big ol’ stew pot…

Here is what you’ll need:

3 tablespoons olive oil
1 1/2 pounds beef or pork stew meat
1 medium onion diced
1 tablespoon minced garlic
6 cups vegetable or beef broth
3-4 medium potatoes, cut in 1/2 inch cubes
2 teaspoons Kosher salt, to taste
3 cups roasted, peeled, chopped green New Mexican  chile or to taste. If you want to supercharge the heat factor, add a Bhut Jolokia or two, but proceed with caution.

Heat the oil in a Dutch oven or large pot over medium-high heat and brown the meat in
batches. Set aside. Saute the onions until golden.
Add the garlic and cook 1 minute. Return the meat to the pan. Add the broth, potatoes,
salt and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for one hour, until the potatoes are tender. Add the green chile and cook 15 to 20 minutes more.

Garnish with fresh chopped cilantro if desired. Serve with warm tortillas.

Chicken Chile Recipe

I’m thinking this recipe using green New Mexican chile has some Cajun influence somewhere in its history because it starts with a roux. Or maybe I’ve been watching too much Emeril Live.

Grab a big pot and a half cup of New Mexico green chili.  Hatch chile would be excellent.

In a large pot, melt 1/2 cup butter. Add 3/4 cup all-purpose flour; stir the resulting paste over medium heat. Do this long enough to cook the flour a bit.Add 2 cups milk and 3 cups water, and stir to blend. If there are any lumps, use a whisk to stir them out. Bring to a boil; reduce to a simmer. Add 2 cups cooked, boneless and skinless chicken cut into bite-size pieces.Add 1/2 cup chopped green Hatch chile,  salt and pepper to taste and a pinch of garlic powder. Stir well and cover. Simmer 30 minutes and serve. Makes 4 servings.

Source: DMN,