I love green chile year round, but it’s especially wonderful in early spring – these cold clear days, or grey rainy days, or the days with the last heavy wet snow. Counting the bags left in the freezer against the weeks until early September when the farm roads and the side lots of every supermarket are heavy with the smoke of roasting chiles. Coming home to the green spicy smell in the crockpot. Eating leftovers for lunch at work out of a coffee cup.
- 2 lb. chicken, turkey, or pork, cubed or shredded
- 1 dozen whole roasted green chiles, cleaned and chopped, or 2 c. frozen diced Hatch chiles
- 2 large or 3 small onions, or 1 c. prepared carmelized onions
- 2 tins stewed tomatoes
- 1 c. unbleached flour (or thickening agent of choice)
- 5 large cloves garlic, chopped; 1 head of roasted garlic, chopped; or 2 Tbsp prepared minced garlic
- Cumin, salt, pepper, granulated garlic, Mexican oregano to taste
- 2 Tbsp olive oil
Brown meat well on all sides in the bottom of a stock pot or Dutch oven. Add onions and cook until just softened. (Or: cook onions alone, then add pre-cooked, shredded meat. Or: combine pre-cooked meat and pre-cooked carmelized onions in a cold pot.) Dredge generously with flour. Add garlic, tomatoes, and 1/2 gallon water. Let cook down on the stovetop or in a crockpot, stirring occasionally, until the meat is falling apart and the liquid is thick and smooth. Season to taste and serve with tortillas or cornbread.
Use leftovers as a gravy for many traditional New Mexico dishes:
- smother a breakfast burrito, omelet, or bowl of scrambled eggs, or serve with pinto or black beans and fried eggs for huevos rancheros
- smother tamales, enchiladas, or chimichanga
- smother an open-faced cheeseburger or chicken-fried steak
- use as a roux-like base for making a thick, rich cheese sauce for green chile mac and cheese
- serve over rice, leftover bread or rice dressing, cornbread, corn pudding, or fresh-baked buttermilk biscuits