On Saturday, we joined a cult – the Hatch Chile Cult. Don't worry, Mom, this cult revolves around the iconic New Mexican chile that brings thousands of followers to its Hatch Chile Festival every Labor Day weekend. So beloved is this chile that families send pickup-driving ambassadors to fetch hundreds of pounds worth while others line up at 4am in supermarket parking lots to score freshly roasted bagfuls. Master Food Preserver & Road Less Traveled goddess, Delilah Snell, organized this class, taught by a veritable who's who of Southern Californian Hatch, food, and preserving connoisseurs. OC Weekly editor and author Gustavo Arellano manned the roaster while sharing the cult of Hatch; founder of LA's Master Food Preserver Program and The Farmer's Kitchen chef, Ernest Miller, showed us how to pressure can the roasted chiles in water as well as vacuum-seal in freezer-ready bags; Delilah walked us through making chile jelly, mustard, salt, and pickles; OC Weekly food blogger, Dave Lieberman, finished the day by preparing an undeniable feast of Hatch chile dishes.
OC Weekly Editor, Gustavo Arellano, and his Hatch Chile Roaster