Posted by: Barbara Evanhoe | August 23, 2014

Taste of New Mexico by Fresh Market

A few weeks ago I was flipping through the pages of the local Williamsburg, Virginia, paper when a certain ad caught my eye.

The bold print words “Hatch Chile Fest” jumped from the page, and, upon further reading, I learned that the Fresh Market would be hosting a chile festival on August 16th, featuring the famous Hatch green chiles that we so enjoyed while living just 20 miles north the town of Hatch, New Mexico, where the chiles are grown.

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I immediately made a note on my old school planner, and promised myself that I would attend.

Keith was on board at the campground that day, so I drove up to the market around 3 p.m. ~ windows wide open to catch the unmistakable aroma of fresh, roasting, Hatch chiles.

I scanned the entrance for chile roasting activity, parked, and headed toward a banner promoting the event.

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And there, under the banner, was a smiling store employee manning the chile roaster.

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I watched, mesmerized (yes, I am easily entertained), as the chiles rolled around in the roaster bin, their skins turning dark and blistering from the scorching heat.

It’s the simplest and best way to prepare the chiles. The roasting intensifies and sweetens the flavor, and the skins, once scorched, can be easily peeled from the soft and delectable meat of the chile.

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Once I’d had my fill of watching the show, I wandered through the store in search of the roasted chiles for sale, and also the red and green chile wines that were advertised in the paper.

Chef Dave stood behind a sampling table, serving a wonderful green chile and chicken salad and the chile wines.

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I chatted with Dave and then loaded my cart with two bottles of wine and enough chiles to last for many months.

A quick stop at the check-out and I was happily heading home so Keith and I could peel and freeze my precious cargo.

Thank you, Fresh Market, for bringing Hatch Chiles to “Me and My Baby”, and other New Mexico transplants here in Virginia!

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