I know it seems like an odd obsession, but when I was in the third grade we learned about that great state on our western border.
We learned about the state capital. The four corners. And we discussed the Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta, the largest hot air balloon festival in the world; and did a special New Mexico class project (part of which involved designing our own hot air balloon).
And even though I had never been, I was smitten. I desperately wanted to go and explore this scenic state.
A few months later we took a family road trip and I got my wish, we were going to be driving through part of New Mexico!
Even though we were just passing through, I vividly remember the star filled sky and glow that the full moon cast over this picturesque southwestern land.
And like that, the moment was over.
To this day I still long to
revisit truly visit New Mexico. To explore Carlsbad Caverns National Park. To camp under the light of a full moon and stay the night at a working dude ranch. To stare up at a balloon filled sky (seriously, top on my life’s bucket list) and devour some authentic New Mexican cuisine.
I will get there someday. One day.
In the meantime, I wait every year for the celebrated Hatch chile season. Hatch chiles, grown exclusively in the Hatch Valley of New Mexico, are only available for a short period of time. And every year I eagerly snatch up as many as I can… adding as much New Mexico flare to every dish I cook!
These Hatch Chile Cheddar Biscuits are one of several Hatch chile recipes I plain on sharing over the next few weeks. Just as I am the state of New Mexico, I am smitten with these biscuits. They are drop biscuits (no rolling out dough or cutting into shapes required), which makes them super easy, not to mention buttery, cheesy and full of smoky Hatch chile heat!
One Year Ago: Chicken Tenders with Creamy Sun-Dried Tomato Sauce
Two Years Ago: Strawberry Banana Bread
Three Years Ago: S’mores Doughnuts
Four Years Ago: Crock-pot Hash Brown Breakfast Casserole
Five Years Ago: Texas Chili
2 Hatch chiles*
2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
5 tablespoons cold butter, cubed
¾ – 1 cup buttermilk
1 cup freshly grated sharp cheddar cheese
3 tablespoons melted butter (for topping)
Preheat broiler to high heat.
Wash and thoroughly dry Hatch chiles. Place whole chiles on a foil lined baking sheet and place in oven 4 to 6 inches below the heating element. Roast chiles for 3-5 minutes or until the skin is charred and blistered. Using tongs, flip chiles over and roast opposite side for an additional 3-5 minutes or until charred. Remove roasted chiles from oven and place in a heat-safe bowl. Cover bowl tightly with plastic wrap and set aside for 10-15 minutes. Once chiles have cooled, cut off tops and scoop out seeds. Peel away outer charred skin and dice chiles into small pieces.
Reduce oven heat to 425 degrees. Grease a baking sheet with butter or line with a splat mat or parchment paper.
In a medium bowl, combine flour, baking powder, garlic powder and salt. Using a pastry cutter, fork or your fingers; cut in cold butter until coarse, sand-like crumbs are formed. Lightly mix in grated cheese and diced chiles. Slowly mix in buttermilk, just until moist, making sure not to over mix.
Using a regular tablespoon, drop heaping spoonfuls of the biscuit mixture onto prepared baking sheet. Bake for 11-13 minutes or until golden brown.
When the biscuits come out of the oven, immediately brush the melted butter evenly over the biscuits. Serve immediately.
*Note: When not in season, substitute the Hatch chiles with poblano or jalapeno peppers.
Adapted from these Cheddar Herb Biscuits