San Antonio's Central Market reviving annual Hatch Chile Festival for 27th year

The annual fest celebrates the world-famous green chile pepper only grown in Hatch, New Mexico.

click to enlarge Central Market's annual Hatch Chile Festival is back for its 27th year. - Photo Courtesy Central Market
Photo Courtesy Central Market
Central Market's annual Hatch Chile Festival is back for its 27th year.
San Antonio's Central Market location will turn up the heat with its 27th annual Hatch Chile Festival, scheduled for Aug. 3–23.

The gourmet grocery's annual fest celebrates the world-famous pepper from Hatch, New Mexico with in-store events, cooking classes and recipes. This year, more than 350,000 pounds of Hatch chiles will make their way to grocery chain H-E-B's 10 Central Markets in Texas, including its SA outpost.

If you’re scratching your head about why this one pepper variety warrants its own two week-long fest, the explanation is all about exclusivity. The peppers are harvested for only a few weeks out of the year, and they aren't grown anywhere else in the world. Pepper connoisseurs salivate over the distinctive sweet-heat punch Hatch chiles bring to dishes.

Central Market's store at 4821 Broadway St. will offer a free tasting event on Friday, August 5 from 5 to 8 p.m. with 10 stations of Hatch goodness. Among the items available for sampling: Hatch margarita mix, Hatch cheddar biscuits, Hatch chicken tamales and Bloody Revolution Hatch Chile Bloody Mary Mix.

Home cooks looking to add a kick to their meals also can pre-register on Central Market’s Cooking School page to prepare pepper-focused recipes such as Hatch crab cakes with Hatch buttermilk ranch dressing, Hatch pepper meatballs with Hatch queso and Hatch lemonade.

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