Get ’Em While They’re Haute
Jul 30, 2015 09:42AM
● By Dia
Calling all pepper people! Central Market’s 20th Annual Hatch Chile Festival is heating up to be the best one yet. It will take place August 5 through August 18 at all nine Central Market locations across Texas.
Here’s a quick Hatch history for you. Twenty years ago, a single Hatch chile roaster arrived at the Central Market in Austin with a pallet of peppers. Within 10 minutes of roasting them, customers were lining up for a taste of the action. Now, the Hatch Chile Festival has become one of Central Market’s most beloved traditions.
These green gems get their name from their origin— Hatch, New Mexico. More than 125 tons of peppers are trucked in from the village of Hatch to the various Central Market locations for the yearly festival. The festival has gotten so much attention that in 2013, the New Mexico Tourism Department declared this Hatch Chile Fest the most authentic Hatch festival outside of New Mexico.
This year marks Central Market’s 20th event. No one in Texas has been roasting peppers as long as it has, according to Heather Senter, the media contact for DFW locations. She says the Central Market Partners who roast the peppers have more than 120 combined years of experience in the art.
An art it is. Central Market’s online guidelines that allow anybody to become an expert roaster include instructions on how to pick the perfect pepper (look for the bright green color, symmetrical shape, heavy weight, and smooth but firm skin) as well as methods for roasting, removing the skins, and freezing for year-round Hatch hoarding.
If you’re a little less adventurous but still love the Hatch taste, Central Market has you covered. The store creates more than 100 Hatch specialty items for purchase during the festival, from baked goods to cheeses and more. Hatch items not to be missed this year include the Green and Blue Burger, made with Hatch peppers and blue cheese; Chicken with Hatch Tamale Cheddar Stuffing; Creamy Hatch Lime Cheesecake; Hatch Chile Ice Cream in two new flavors; and Schaller & Weber Hatch Smoked Sausage.
With so much tradition behind these precious peppers and new Hatch items to try each year, it’s clear why the Hatch Chile Festival has become a true pepper-phile’s dream. Head on over to Central Market and prepare to smell Hatch chiles roasting all over Southlake.
1425 E. Southlake Blvd.