While I am a summer person, I also love fall. And I especially love fall in New Mexico. It's about hot air balloons and the smell of green chile roasting in the air. The Hatch (a town in Southern New Mexico known for its chile) crop came in early this year which means we're enjoying it a few weeks earlier than usual but, believe me, no one is complaining.
And if you live away from New Mexico, the state has done a good job promoting green chile and it's now available (not just in a can– that should only be your very last resort because it doesn't taste the same!) in grocery stores around the country. When I moved back to Illinois a few years ago for a short period of time, I found it at Whole Foods but my guess is that it's even more widely available that it used to be.
But to use it for dishes like enchiladas (recipe coming soon), chile rellenos (see last year's directions here), or simply to top on your eggs, you need to spend a little time roasting it. The added benefit is the smell.
Roasting simply means placing the chiles on the grill and burning the skins so that they separate from the meat inside. After watching many men spend too much time flipping things on the grill, I'm more apt to walk away and let things cook without my intervention. I try to turn them only once. Remove them from the grill when the skins are mostly blackened (my photos should help you gauge that).
If you plan to use the chiles right away, you can place them in a towel to continue to separate the skin before running them under water to rub off the skin and the seeds. Then chop them into pieces and add to your dish.
Or if you want to freeze them and save them for later (which is what we do here because we have easy access to the chiles), place them in serving size plastic bags and freeze until you need them. You'll run them under water to remove the skin and seeds then.
As we go through a fall of green chile recipes up next week: breakfast burritos.