New Mexico Green Chile Stew

27 Aug

Another great recipe from The Pink Adobe, slightly modified.

My husband was in Santa Fe last week, and had a meal (or two) at our favorite restaurant, The Pink Adobe. He raved about their New Mexico Green Chile Stew (and took a photo of it, and sent it to me, and rubbed in the fact that he was dining deliciously while I was making do with plate full of sauteed snap peas and green beans – I eat weirdly when he’s out of town). So last weekend we procured the ingredients and set out to recreate the dish.

A few things to note: First, I HIGHLY recommend roasting your own (Hatch) green chiles. Don’t be intimidated if you’ve never done it – it’s incredibly easy and you will NEVER EVER buy canned or frozen green chiles again. The second thing to note – you could use canned peeled whole tomatoes, but it’s SUPER easy to peel your own fresh tomatoes, and I think it improves the flavor. And third, this stew is incredibly versatile – you can use pork, chicken, or beef. It would probably taste great with some roasted corn thrown in there, too, or some whole black beans (or both). But made just as I describe below, it was so damned good that my husband and I stood over the pot dipping torn pieces of flour tortilla into the stew and OH MY GOD-ing until we finally wrenched ourselves away to watch football.

How to roast green chiles: Preheat your oven’s broiler (mine has a low, medium and high setting – I used the medium setting). Make sure the oven rack is at the highest level (closest to the heating elements). Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil. Wash and dry the chiles, and line them up on the baking sheet. Place under the broiler, and keep an eye on them. Roast for 3-5 minutes, until the chiles are about 70% charred.

Green chiles roasting under the broiler

Green chiles roasting under the broiler

Use tongs to flip the chiles over, and roast the other side for another 3-5 minutes. This should ABSOLUTELY NOT take more than 10 minutes at the outside. You don’t want them burned, just nicely charred. Again using tongs, transfer the whole chiles to a (non-metal) bowl, and cover with plastic wrap. Allow the chiles to “steam” for 20 minutes. Then, remove the chiles from the bowl and peel the charred skin away with your fingers – it should come off very easily. Remove the stem, split the chiles in half, and remove the seeds (I used my fingers). That’s all there is to it!

Green chiles, roasted and peeled

Green chiles, roasted and peeled

How to peel fresh tomatoes: Get a pot of water boiling on the stove (enough to submerge the tomatoes a couple at a time). Fill a large bowl with water and ice (large enough to submerge the tomatoes). De-stem and wash whole tomatoes. Cut a small X through the skin on the bottom of each tomato (side opposite the stem). Drop tomatoes, a couple at a time, into the boiling water. Count to fifteen-Mississippi (time for fifteen seconds). Use a slotted spoon to remove them from the boiling water and transfer them immediately to the ice water. Submerge them for 10 seconds and remove immediately (otherwise they get waterlogged). Grab the corners of the cut skin on the bottom of the tomatoes and peel down – the skins should peel off easily. And that’s all there is to that! (Here’s a good video tutorial.)

On to the stew…

Ingredients:

– 2 lbs boneless pork (we used a pork shoulder), cut into 1-inch square pieces
– 2 TBSP olive oil
– 1/2 cup sweet onion, chopped
– 1 tsp minced garlic
– 1/4 cup flour
– 3 small russet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1-inch square pieces
– 2 cups roasted green (Hatch) chiles (about six large), peeled and cut into a large dice
– 2 cups (about five medium) peeled fresh tomatoes, quartered, de-seeded, then each quarter cut in half
– 1 fresh jalapeno, de-seeded/de-veined and finely chopped
– 1 1/2 cups chicken stock or broth (we used home made)
– 1/2 tsp sugar
– salt and pepper to taste

Veggies

Pork shoulder

Directions:

In a heavy soup pot or Dutch oven, heat the olive oil on medium-high heat. Working in batches, brown the pork on all sides. Add the onion and garlic to the pork and stir to combine. Incorporate the flour, stirring constantly for about two minutes. Add the potatoes, chiles, tomatoes, jalapeno, and chicken broth. Stir to combine, and scrape the bottom of the pot to deglaze. Stir in the sugar, salt and pepper. Cover and cook on a low simmer, stirring occasionally, for 1.5 hours, or until the pork is tender. Adjust seasoning as needed.

All the ingredients in the pot!

All the ingredients in the pot!

The finished stew, ready to eat!

The finished stew, ready to eat!

If you can POSSIBLY STAND IT, make the stew a day ahead of time. Let it cool completely, then put it in the refrigerator overnight. Reheated the next day, the flavors have had time to really develop. Serve with flour tortillas. You’ll notice that the chiles, onions and tomatoes all but disappear into the almost gravy-like sauce of the stew. If you want larger vegetable pieces use a very large dice. We found that we absolutely loved it the way it was.

Makes about six servings.

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