One of the highlights of Austin living comes each year when the Hatch chile peppers make their way to town on the dusty backroads from the Hatch Valley in southern New Mexico. Veteran food writers at the Austin Chronicle used to record this passage when the form of transit was burro or donkey but that’s a discussion left for another time. Recently, on our thrice weekly trip to Fiesta, we lost it when we spied these emerald green jewels lining one of the wooden stalls in the best supermarket in Austin. Our produce man was nearby so we got him to leverage us an industry discount and picked up 2lbs at .99c per. We’ll be buying a gunny sack later.

Rousting through the freezer we found a packet of Andouille sausage from Best Stop over in Scott, Louisiana and that’s when the recipe began to take shape. Here’s what we came up with to usher in the 2012 Hatch Chile harvest.

White Bean Soup with Roasted Hatch Chiles and Andouille Sausage

Ingredients

4 quarts Stock, Chicken {http://www.scrumptiouschef.com/food/2011/6/20/Simple-Easy-And-Quick-Pressure-Cooker-Chicken-Stock}

2 lbs Sausage, Andouille, smoked, chopped {http://www.scrumptiouschef.com/food/2010/11/18/Austin-Daily-Photo800-Miles-of–Boudin-Austin-to-Lafayette-Nunus-Best-Stope-Poches-Nov-18-2010}

1 lb Beans, Camellia, white {New Orleans finest}

2 lbs Chiles, Hatch, roasted, skin left on, chopped finely

Salt

Pepper

Method

* Sort and wash beans

* Bring stock, along with beans to boil, reduce to simmer

* Cook 1 hour

* Add sausage

* Cook 30 minutes

* Add peppers

* Cook til beans are tender

* Adjust flavors with salt and pepper

Bon Appetit Y’all

Cooking notes

I roast my chiles over hickory on my Weber grill in the backyard

I like the blackened skin left on although it does cloud the soup

If you want to make this recipe more like a chili, add 8 oz of beans {total of 24 oz}

The Andouille from Best Stop comes in a beef gut casing, some folks remove this before integrating into the dish but I leave it on, beef gut casing is tasty

A nice garnish for this soup is a dollop of crema salvadorena

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