What the Heck is a New Mexico Green Chile?

Hope you enjoy this excerpt from my cookbook, Go-Go Green Chile Recipes.  You can find it on Amazon at:

Go-Go Green Chile Recipes


Based on its popularity and its prevalence in New Mexico’s culture, one would think the Green Chile has been around for thousands of years, but that’s not actually the case. In fact, the New Mexico chile was initially developed in 1894 by Dr. Fabián Garcia, a horticulturist at New Mexico State University.

Garcia started with 14 lineages of Pasilla, Colorado, and Negro cultivars that he found growing in New Mexico and Southern Colorado. These peppers were chosen because they had a “larger smoother, fleshier, more tapering and shoulderless pod for canning purposes.”

His first chile was released in 1913, and was named “New Mexico No. 9.”

Chile grown in the Hatch Valley, in and around Hatch, New Mexico, is called “Hatch Chile,” but New Mexico Chile Peppers also grow along the entire Rio Grande River from northern Taos Pueblo to southern Isleta Pueblo. They are an important crop to New Mexico’s economy and culture.

The New Mexico Green Chile pepper flavor is lightly pungent with a subtly sweet, spicy, smoky flavor. Not all Hatch chiles are the same variety, and the degree of “heat” or spiciness depends on the variety of New Mexico chile peppers that each farmer grows.

Chile peppers are also an excellent source of vitamins, including A, B, and C, and are high in fiber, phytonutrients, and Capsaicin, which some researchers claim can help prevent cancer. Chiles are also good for your metabolism, because Capsaicin’s effect is similar to green tea (ECCG) in that it can help with weight loss. Capsaicin is also used to treat arthritis, shingles, nerve damage, and migraines.

Mountain Man Gourmet proudly uses only 100% Hatch Red and Green Chiles in our spice blends and other products.

Did you know?

The official New Mexico state question is “Red or Green?”

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