April is a true “shoulder season” in Santa Fe — definitely still not winter but not fully spring either. Our farmers market might be the place this is most evident. When we visited on Saturday, there was an array of the first-of-the-season asparagus, pea shoots and young goat cheeses right next door to fresh-ground blue cornmeal and dried chiles. Since April evenings have the potential to become quite cold even though the days are warming nicely, I thought it would be good to share the following recipe from Romero Farms which is warming but not heavy.
2 oz. seeded and stemmed Romero Farms red chile pods
2 lbs. ground beef
2 TBSP. fresh chopped garlic
1/4 cup flour
Place chiles in a large pot and cover with water. Boil for 20 minutes with lid on. Turn off and allow to soak for 10 minutes more. Remove chiles from water and place in blender with four cups of water. Puree until smooth. Brown ground beef in this bottom, 6 quarter dutch oven. Cook until well-browned. Add garlic, flour and salt. Cook an additional 5 minutes. Add pureed chiles and three cups of water. Simmer for 15 minutes. Serve with fresh beans and tortillas. Makes 4 quarts of red chile, which can be frozen for later use.