Friday, July 3, 2009

Jalapeno and New Mexican Chiles


The name of this well-known chile came from the town of Jalapa in the Mexican state of Veracruz. The Jalapeno is likely the most well known chile of all.

Uses: Jalapenos may be used for virtually any recipe including green or red variations in ripeness, de-veined or de-podded chiles to lighten the amount of heat, raw or roasted, dried or smoked as chipotles*. Perfect for salsas, soups, pickling, or any all-purpose spice need.

*Chipotles are often made using Jalapenos. Our chipotles, however, are made from a variety of chile types, including the traditional Jalapeno. Sample from the diversity of chipotles that Tierra offers to find what variety you like best.

Heat: Hot, but variable.

New Mexican Varieties

New Mexican chiles include the Anaheim (so named when it’s seeds were historically transported from Santa Fe, New Mexico to Anaheim, CA where a chile cannery operated in 1900), the Espanola Improved (best as a dried chile with thin walled fruit), Big Jim (one of the larger varieties-best for stuffing).

Traditionally New Mexican varieties have fallen under the umbrella name Anaheim and perhaps have become misunderstood as a result. In fact, there is a diversity of New Mexican chiles under cultivation, approximately 50 percent of the U.S. chile production is represented by New Mexican varieties, the majority still produced in New Mexico.

Uses: Use green (chile verde), or red (chile colorado). The red form of any chile has had more time to ripen and develop sweet flavor, the green version has a fresh green chile flavor that is perfect for rellenos. Deep red, ripe and leathery New Mexican chiles provide the materials you needs to make ristras, chiles hung to dry in the autumn sun. Roast them red and green.

Heat: Mild to medium to hot, may be quite variable.

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