HATCH CHILE SOUP WITH FRESH SUMMER CORN & CILANTRO LIME SHRIMP – SO EASY TO MAKE AND SO MUCH FLAVOR!
Hatch chiles arrive here in Northern VA once each year, always in late summer and there are never enough to go around. I’m part of the mad scramble to be one of the lucky few to bring some home. Most of the time I’m able to succeed, and last fall was a particularly good year for me. I scored about ten pounds of freshly roasted hatch chiles and I took full advantage!
This year, my freezer is already filled with flame-roasted hatch chiles, courtesy of Young Guns Produce, a fantastic hatch chile producer in the heart of Hatch Valley, New Mexico. I had the good fortune to spend a few hours with Kari Shepan and Chris Franzoy who pretty much run the whole operation. We toured their hatch chile fields, enjoyed World Famous Green Chile Cheeseburgers at Sparky’s Burgers and talked a LOT about hatch chiles. But mostly we had a lot fun and even more laughs. Good people, those Young Guns folks.
I’m feeling pretty spoiled, really. Young Guns flame-roasts their chiles, dices them then ships them frozen (check stores near you)! What I love about their hatch chiles is that they’re not mushy when you cook them; they retain their shape and texture as if you’d just roasted and diced them yourself. I have a freezer FILLED with mild, medium, hot and extra-hot…and I’ve been using them in just about everything!
This Hatch Chile Soup with Fresh Summer Corn is, in my opinion, the best of the recipes I’ve created with my hatch chiles to date. It’s got some heat from the chiles but the sweet summer corn cools things down a bit and adds a nice texture. You can make this hatch chile soup with or without the shrimp, but they do take the recipe up a notch. It’s easy to throw together, even at the last minute – I don’t even thaw my chiles, I just toss in the whole bag and cook ’em until the liquid has cooked off. Couldn’t be more simple!
Learning about hatch chiles was a really cool experience for me. I’ve gushed about the kind, generous people of New Mexico but it was just as exciting to learn about these chiles and see them growing first-hand. Hatch, NM itself is quite small in terms of population but there’s a lot of pride there, and rightfully so. I thought I was fairly well-versed in hatch chiles, having cooked with them for the past few years. I knew that a chile wasn’t a “hatch” unless it had been grown in Hatch Valley, but I’d thought that the hatch was the variety – turns out, there are many varieties of hatch chiles and they ALL come from Hatch Valley! The Big Jim is the most common (I just gave you the answer to the Amazon gift card giveaway!) but there are numerous other varieties to choose from. I’m growing some Big Jims from seeds I brought back and my parents are doing the same. So excited that I’ll have both Young Guns hatch chiles in my freezer AND some fresh ones to stuff – some great stuffed hatch chile recipes will surely be coming your way!
Until then…make this Hatch Chile Soup!! It’s been a hit with everyone I’ve made it for, both with and without the shrimp. Many grocery stores are carrying the Young Guns brand of frozen hatch chiles so there’s no excuse not to enjoy this flavorful, healthy Hatch Chile Soup 🙂
Printable recipe at http://www.thewickednoodle.com/hatch-chile-soup/