Mama Squirrel here! Yeah, that’d be me, Mary, feeling good and stocked up after toting over 130 home-canned jars of garden produce down to the basement for winter. I started out with it all in two really large kitchen cupboards but hubby’s comments about “all that weight and crashing cabinets full of all your hard work”–well, needless to say, horrors, perish the thought! They are now happily residing on shelves next to all the potatoes and onions we harvested earlier this summer.
This was a great year for pepper plants, and piles of large green chili peppers and the red “Big Jim’s” that Farmer John’s crew saved from first frosts last night have been made available 10 lbs for $10. I’m in! You might want to check your local farmer’s markets or CSA farms and get in on the end-of-season bounty as well!
Roasting Chili Peppers
Been doing some research on how to roast these beauties, because apparently, roasted chili peppers taste de-lish in about everything from sandwiches, pizzas, omelets, and pasta dishes to serving them chopped up in mayonnaise and hummus! After roasting, you can either store them in the fridge submerged in olive oil or freeze them. Today’s recipes call for roasted, peeled chili peppers, so be sure to make note of that.
This site has a wonderful tutorial explaining how to roast chili peppers in the oven or outdoors on the grill! You can even roast them directly on your gas burner flame…if you are so brave!
I debated about grilling ours outdoors, but it’s 35 degrees out there currently–and I’m not wanting to brave the wind! Here’s how I’m going to roast my peppers for freezing.
- Turn your broiler on and put the chilies in a single layer on a foil lined cookie sheet.
- Let the chilies blister, turn them and blister all sides equally and remove from the broiler.
- Cover the tray and chilies with a damp dish towel for 15 minutes. The moisture and coolness will cause the skin to separate further making it easy to peel.
- Put several at a time in labeled freezer bags and add 1 TB water. Freeze! May also dice and freeze to save time later in recipes like the Green Chili Stew below…
Green Chili Chicken Enchiladas
- 2 cups chopped (about 10) long green chilies or Big Jim’s, roasted and skinned, with stems and seeds removed
- 1/4 cup sweet onion, chopped
- 3 cups chopped, grilled chicken breasts (canned chicken is fine to use also)
- 2-3 cups shredded cheddar and Monterey Jack cheese
- 26 oz can (family size) cream of chicken soup mixed with can of milk
- 15 white corn tortillas, cut or torn in fourths
- 1/4 tsp garlic powder
- salt and pepper to taste
Pour cream of chicken soup mixture into a large stockpot and add green chilies, chicken, and spices. Mix and stir over medium-high heat, bringing to a boil just so it all mixes well together.
In the bottom of a 9×13″ pan, spread enough of sauce to keep enchiladas from sticking, not much. Tear the tortillas into fourths and layer 1/3 of them in bottom of baking dish. Layer a bit more sauce on tortillas, then 1 cup or more of shredded cheese, evenly distributing. Next layer up is a little scant saving the majority to dump on top in the last layer. So this scant layer is more tortillas, more sauce, onions (note that this is the only layer to get onions, feel free to add more onions if you *really* like onions!), cheese and then one more layer of tortillas, sauce and cheese.
Bake covered at 350F for 20 minutes, then uncover and let bake another 20-25 minutes till the edges are lightly browned and beginning to peel away from edge.
This recipe is said to be even better the next day as leftovers, after all the spices meld together–Mmm!
Green Chilies Rellenos
- 6 long green chili peppers, or Big Jim’s–roasted, thawed, peeled but intact with stems and seeds
- 6 rectangular strips of cheese the length of the pepper–white, cheddar or Monterrey Jack
- 4 eggs, separated
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 TB flour
- Take your chili peppers and make a small slit about a half inch below the stem through which to slide your strip of cheese. Some people slit their peppers all the way down from the top to within a 1/2 inch of the tip, and remove all the seeds carefully by scraping them out with their finger or a small spoon. (Wear plastic gloves or coat your hands in vegetable oil because you won’t realize you’ve been burning your skin on the seeds until some time has passed). It’s not necessary to remove the seeds, however, if you do decide to slit the entire side of the chili, then secure it with toothpicks as necessary to hold it together, and don’t forget to tell your guests to be watchful while eating!
- Make your batter. Beat the 4 separated egg whites till stiff. In a separate bowl stir up your egg yolks, and add 1/2 tsp salt to the yolks and mix it in. THEN pour the yolk mixture into the egg white mixture but BEFORE folding them together, sprinkle the 1 TB flour across the top and THEN fold together. Got it? ;O)
- You are ready to begin frying, so have about 1/2 inch of hot oil ready to go in a nice sized skillet. Dip your chilies in plain flour first, this will help the batter stick to the pepper. After covering the pepper in flour, dip it into the bowl of batter, carefully covering entire pepper. Fry them in the hot oil for 2 minutes on each side, or till golden brown.
An alternate way to fix Chilies Rellenos is to remove stems and seeds, insert cheese, layer in a 9×13″ pan, cover with this batter recipe and bake in a 350F oven till golden brown. Beautiful served alongside rice and beans, with a garnish of lettuce and tomatoes!
Green Chili Stew
- 1 1/2 lbs stew meat
- 1/2 medium diced onion
- 2 medium diced potatoes
- 8-10 green chilies or Big Jim’s (roasted and peeled with seeds/stems removed)
- 2 minced garlic cloves
- 1/4 tsp cumin, if desired
- 1 tsp salt
- Brown stew meat in 2 TB hot oil, add onions during last 2-3 minutes to saute, lastly add minced garlic
- Add enough water to cover and simmer covered for 30 minutes
- Add potatoes, diced green chilies, and spices
- Add more water to desired “soupiness”
- Let cook for another 20-30 minutes
Can use this dish as a stew, or as a side dish w/beans and rice and a tortilla, or it can be cooked down till it’s saucy enough to use as a burrito filling. This recipe can also be put together in the morning and left in the crockpot on low all day…
These 3 recipes were on a fabulous DVD Farmer John loaned me yesterday called “Get Your Fix” New Mexico Chile Cooking Demos…halfway through watching it, I called the farm and asked them to set aside 10 lbs for me! What an easy sell…ha!
What are you doing to keep warm today?