Here in the desert Southwest, the chile pepper is not only abundant, they’re popular and versatile – they are most notably used to make your own enchilada sauce and to kick up your cornbread.
Of course if you are anything like my husband and kids, you might even love to eat pickled hatch chiles and onions too.
These chiles are incredibly fun to have as part of your CSA share ~ roasting them on the grill will send some of the best smells wafting through your neighborhood, too. That’s always fun, especially when you have neighbors. If roasting yourself doesn’t interest you, and if you are close to a latin market, you can usually find them already roasted and bagged – perfect for saving time.
My last batch of chile peppers were the Anaheim variety – they sat in the fridge for a few days before I decided that pickling them would be the best option. It’s such a quick & easy way to use them up, and they are so fun to eat. My hot-pepper loving kids love to eat them straight from the jar with their meals for some extra kick.
The Anaheim chile is a cousin to the Hatch chile – they look kind of alike. Their heat level varies so greatly – some are more mild but others can be quite hot. Hatch, New Mexico is the chile capital of the world – every year in September they have their annual Hatch Chile Festival – you can head out to the small town and celebrate the harvest of the chile pepper and bring a bag or two home.
There are so many ways you can use these chiles – whether Anaheim or Hatch; roasting them for recipes is the most popular preparation for them, but others love to pickle them to use on tacos or grilled fish. You ould also use them to kick up your salsa or guac, too!
This recipe makes two pint jars that keep for up to a month when tightly sealed in the refrigerator.
- 4 large Anaheim or Hatch chiles
- 1 medium sweet onion
- 1 C water
- 1 C white vinegar
- 1 Tbsp sea salt
- 1/2 C sugar
- 2 sprigs fresh dill
- 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes, divided
- Rinse off your chiles and slice them into 1/4 inch rings. As you approach the top of the chile, remove the seeds that start popping up in your slices.
- Peel and slice your onion into rings.
- Prepare your wide mouth pint jars: in each jar, place 1/8 tsp red pepper flakes (optional), and a sprig of dill.
- Toss your vegetables; in each jar, pack your vegetables within 1/2 inch from the top of the jar.
- Bring your water, vinegar, salt and sugar to a boil, stirring to dissolve.
- Pour the hot brine over the vegetables; place the canning lid and ring on each jar and screw tightly.
- Allow to cool for at least 4-5 hours. Refrigerate for up to 4 weeks.
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