I grew up in New Mexico, so green and red chiles are a passion and a staple in my cooking. There are many different types of chiles available, but I will say that you can’t get any better than those grown by the local farms in New Mexico. Chiles are the state vegetable of New Mexico and the state question is “Red or Green?”. There are more chiles grown in New Mexico than the other 49 states combined, so they know what they’re doing and they do it oh, so well.
In case you are wondering about the spelling of “chile” vs. “chili”, maybe this will help. Chile with an “e” refers to the vegetable itself. So if you are referring to the actual pepper, use the “e”. Chili with an “i” refers to the actual stew which can be Texas-style with just meat (no beans!) or Southern-style with stewed tomatoes, beans and veggies. If you are referring the dish you eat, use the “i”.
Here is a short list of some of the most commonly used green chiles. Below, I have included some links to websites where you can find them if you cannot locate any at your local markets.
- Big Jims
- NM 6/4
Chile and Chile Product Websites
Chile Monster (you order through their facebook page – they do not have a separate website)
Roasting Fresh Green Chiles
In The Oven:
Place the chiles on a foil- or parchment paper-lined baking sheet in a 400 degree oven for 20 – 30 minutes, turning half-way through, until the skin is blistered and black all over. Place peppers in a glass bowl and cover tightly with plastic wrap to allow to steam. Once cooled, remove the skin, stems and seeds using your hands (do not rinse with water – this removes heat and flavor). Chop up the roasted peppers and they’re ready to use.
On The Grill:
Place the chiles directly on the grates of your grill over a medium-high flame and allow the chiles to turn black and blister, turning periodically to roast evenly on all sides. Once the chiles are blistered and black all over, remove from grill. Place peppers in a glass bowl and cover tightly with plastic wrap to allow to steam. Once cooled, remove the skin, stems and seeds using your hands (do not rinse with water – this removes heat and flavor). Chop up the roasted peppers and they’re ready to use.