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Hatch Chiles Are Here! Time For Tequila Kissed Salsa

It’s that time again–New Mexico hatch chiles have arrived! Grab the blender, the roasted hatch chiles and the tequila. Yes, the Casa Noble tequila!

I was surprised recently when Ashley with The Baddish Group, the PR firm representing Casa Noble Tequila, asked if they could use my blog with Jonna’s tequila-infused guacamole recipe on National Guacamole Day. (Sept. 16th, in case you’re wondering). One thing led to another and before I knew it Ashley sent me samples of their tequila, so I challenged myself to come up with a great recipe. Something at least as good as the guacamole and more interesting than a margarita.

Soon inspiration hit me–hatch chiles. If tequila was good in guacamole, I thought it would be great in a roasted hatch chile salsa. But I didn’t stop there–no–I used it as a marinade for a pork tenderloin. Both were so good I have to share them. (I also used some to marinate shrimp–that was great, too).

  • 12 hatch chiles
  • 8 tomatillos
  • 1 jalapeno
  • 1/2 white onion, chopped
  • 3-4 cloves garlic
  • 3-4 limes
  • handful of cilantro, roughly chopped
  • 1-2 TBS Casa Noble tequila
  • 1/4 cup water (more or less)
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 pork tenderloin

You would think I learned my lesson last year when I roasted hatch chiles and burned my hands, but I didn’t. Again, I had fingers on fire. So when you make this recipe WEAR GLOVES! You can either roast them right on the flame on your gas cook top, on the BBQ, or like I did this time, under the broiler. Having tried all three ways, I think the broiler is the easiest. 

Just line a rimmed baking sheet with foil and put the hatch chiles, the jalapeno and the tomatillos on it so you capture any juices that seep out. You’ll want to add the juice to the blender. 

Put under the broiler for about 10 minutes until blackened, then turn over with tongs and blacken the other side. 

After they cool, put on your gloves and remove the charred skin and most or all of the seeds. Cut the tomatillos into small cubes and chop the jalapeño.

The rest is simple. Put all the ingredients EXCEPT THE TEQUILA in the blender and pulse. Add water as needed to thin it out.

I found the tasty ratio for salsa to tequila to be 1 cup salsa : 1 tablespoon tequila. Of course, you can add or subtract, but if kids are around, skip the tequila, obviously. You can finish it off with some finely chopped onion if you want a little more crunch in it. 

At this point you could grab a bag of Hav’a Chips and call it a day. 

But for a real treat, use some as a marinade. I had a pork tenderloin but you could also use chicken. Again, the 1 cup salsa to 1 TBS tequila is a good ratio. 

Rub the pork with salsa, place in a Ziploc bag and refrigerate overnight, or at least 4 hours.

Sear over very high heat, then continue to cook over indirect heat. Remember MOM–the burners should be medium-off-medium. Brush salsa on meat. It will stick a little, but when you turn it, it will be fine. Make sure it reaches an internal temperature of 160. A New York Times article says it’s safe at 145, but I usually stick with the 160. Remember, it keeps cooking after you remove it from the grill. Squeeze fresh lime juice over the meat, cover loosely with foil and let it rest for 5 minutes. 

I had invited my friend, Sharon, to be the taster so I made a few other dishes for our lunch. This was simply tomatoes, a nectarine, avocado, cilantro and a squeeze of lime seasoned with salt and pepper. It was light and refreshing and took away some of the heat of the salsa.

Slice the pork–yes, it can be a little pink–and garnish with the tomato-nectarine salsa.

It was such a nice day we sat outside and had a great lunch. I had some leftover creamed corn and that rounded out the dish. 

Sharon gave it a thumbs up and her husband, Mike got the leftovers for dinner. So everyone was happy. 

Thanks again, Ashley, for the tequila. I have a few other ideas like shrimp, chicken and maybe some other veggies. I’ll keep everyone posted.

More good news–I have new readers! Here’s a big Laguna Beach welcome to my new friends in Guam. Remember, read it first at Stu News.

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