It's Hatch chile pepper time in the Southwest. If you aren't familiar with what that means, don't worry, I wasn't either until I moved to Dallas four years ago. Hatch chiles are a specific type of green chile grown in Hatch, New Mexico, and distributed to grocers nationwide in late August every year. The Hatch pepper is widely regarded as the cream of the chile pepper crop. It is similar in shape to the Anaheim pepper, but with a darker color, sometimes with an orange tint and a bigger bite.
|Photo credit: Houston Chronicle|
So, as usual, this week I purchased two containers of Hatch and was determined to create my own recipes that would feature my favorite pepper. Knowing that Robert and I would be hitting the road to drive to San Marcos to spend the long weekend with my parents, I decided that one recipe would need to be chicken salad.
Typically we purchase a tub of chicken salad from our favorite spot in Dallas, along with a sleeve of crackers and while we're driving I will put a spoonful of salad on a cracker and hand it to Robert to eat. This time we used my Hatch Chicken Salad instead for a delightful treat! I used my Orange Cranberry Chicken Salad recipe as a jumping off point and incorporated ingredients I thought would both complement and highlight the flavor of the pepper. Robert and I both agree, this chicken salad is unlike any we've ever tasted before! It's fresh and light tasting and every now and then has a slight kick from a stray seed. We highly recommend it!
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Hatch Chile Chicken Salad
2/3 cup mayonnaise
2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
3 tablespoons fresh lime juice
4 cups shredded cooked chicken
1 tablespoon minced shallot
1/4 cup minced cilantro
1/2 cup chopped roasted hatch peppers
In a bowl combine the mayonnaise, vinegar and lime juice.