Posted by: susanideus | August 22, 2009

To Green Chile…thanks for the memories!

Chile Roasting

We all know that particular smells can trigger powerful memories.  None is so strong or as pleasant for me as the aroma of fresh green chile being roasted.  In New Mexico, this signals that autumn is near.

OK, so it's nowhere near fall in south Texas, but this morning I found green chile roasting at Hubbell & Hudson's "Hatch Fired Up" event in the Woodlands.  Barely out of the car, the scents wafted to my eager nose. 

If I closed my eyes, I was back in Corrales, New Mexico under colorful cottonwoods waiting in line to get my sack of chiles roasted.  What did my mind's eye see? A bright azure sky above, dusty clay beneath my feet, happy children playing, their faces streaked with dirt and butter and bits of fresh roasted corn, the women at the old-fashioned cash registers ringing up the day's sales, the majestic mountains and mesas visible in the distance, red chile ristras and wreathes hanging from the vigas of the old adobe produce stand, the abundant displays of apples, corn, squash, pumpkins, beans, onions, and other bounty harvested from the Rio Grande Valley, the jewel-tone jars of homemade salsas and jams lined up on the shelves, the cars and old pick-ups being loaded with the shoppers' treasures.  There was a lilting blend of English & Spanish voices, sharing recipes and anticipating the savory dishes to made for family and friends, and congenial conversations about the changing seasons and the upcoming holidays.  A few of us would laugh about the lingering scent of roasted chile in our cars for days to come and admit it was not a problem at all.

One whiff and I was home.



  1. Beautiful, Susan–you’ve got me right there with you! Bill went to the flea market in Las Vegas NM yesterday and picked up a sack of chiles to bring home with him.

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