Hatch Chile Chile - Round 2

Last week we wrote that it was "too hot" for chili. Seemingly it was, but Round 1 was a success anyway. Since it wasn't yet confirmed, we didn't tell you the real reason for said chili (besides hatch season)- we are entering a Chili Cook-Off! This Sunday, August 30th, 4th Street Market in Downtown Santa Ana is hosting a Hatch Chile Festival in honor of this glorious season. Present will be all sorts of delicious Hatch Chile dishes from 4th street vendors, local chefs and a chili contest with yours truly as a contestant . 

As such, you could guess we're working on perfecting our chili, hence Round 1 and Round 2 (to be followed by a heres-hoping-award-winning Round 3?). This time we went for a meatier version, incorporating diced pork belly and house-ground 80/20 beef, both sourced from Electric City Butcher, the best of the best. As you'll notice in comparison to the previous post, we've changed the following: 

  1. Style of tomato
  2. Type of pork, bean & pepper 
  3. Grind of beef
  4. Additions: extra cumin, red wine & cooking time  

These changes have changed the flavor profile quite a bit and we'd love to tell you just how much, except that round 3 is waiting on us, limiting our blogging time. The recipe for round 2 is below and we give you our word that we'll post something un-chili related before the week is up. Thank you for reading and supporting our Hatch Chile Chili endeavor! 


1 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 pound pork belly, diced
1 cup sweet onion
1 cup chopped orange bell peppers
4-6 roasted Hatch Chiles
1 tablespoon minced garlic
1 pound ground beef, 80/20
1/2 tablespoon cumin
1/2 tablespoon chili powder
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1 cup light beer
1 (28-ounce) can plum tomatoes in juice
2 cups low-sodium chicken stock
1 cup red wine, fruit forward
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 (16-ounce) can kidney beans, drained and rinsed
salt to taste 

In a large skillet or dutch oven, heat olive oil and cook pork belly until brown. Add the onion, peppers and hatch chiles, cooking over medium heat until onions are translucent.

Add garlic. Add the ground beef, breaking it up with a wooden spoon as it cooks. Add cumin, chili powder, garlic powder and dried oregano, stirring well to combine. Pour in the beer and use the wooden spoon to scrape the brown bits off the bottom of the pan. Add remaining ingredients and stir well to combine. Reduce heat to low and simmer for 1 hour, stirring occasionally.

Salt to taste. Serve in a bowl and top with any combination of shredded cheese and sour cream desired.

Turn the AC down real low before digging in.