When you think of travel, one of the things that pops into your mind is what you had to eat that you wish you could have again. Food is definitely one of the elements that makes a journey memorable, and sometimes just the hint of a special aroma brings you back to that place and time. The scent of good green chile works that way, and regular recipe requests for the green chile croissants served at the Inn’s complimentary breakfast are the proof, so we are happy to help you bring this yummy memory into your own casa!
The good news is that green chile can travel back home with you easily in its frozen form. All our local markets sell it, and there are a variety of brands from which to choose, although you should believe the packaging when it is labeled “HOT.” Simply slide your frozen tub of green goodness into a ziploc bag, slip it into your carry-on bag, and voila, it will be defrosted and ready to use when you arrive back home. Do make sure your chile is frozen, since once it liquifies, it will be confiscated by the TSA at check-in. As in all recipes, the better your ingredients, the better the results. If you are a real baker, you can make your own croissant dough, but since good green chile is the dominant flavor, packaged dough is a lot easier if you are not an aspiring French boulanger! So, without further ado, here’s how to make the green chile croissant appear on your own breakfast table!
For Green Chile Croissants, you will need the following ingredients for each croissant:
Frozen croissant dough
3 oz. of thinly-sliced lean deli ham per croissant (vegetarians can leave this out and replace with extra cheese and vegans can get creative with roasted veggies – locals use zucchini with green chile to make calabacitas)
2 oz. of good-quality thinly-sliced swiss cheese per croissant
A container of chopped green chile, defrosted and well-drained (and we do mean well-drained, or your croissants will be gooey)
2 eggs, beaten with a few oz. of milk
Follow the package directions for thawing croissant dough (keep it covered with a damp towel as you use it and bring it to approximately 90 degrees). Pre-heat your oven to 350 degrees.
Prepare an egg wash made of 3 eggs and a touch of milk. Blend these ingredients well and have a pastry brush ready.
The croissant dough is packaged in pre-cut triangles: On the wide end of the triangle, place several thin slices each of swiss cheese and ham, and sprinkle with the well-drained, chopped green chile. Roll the dough towards the small end of the croissant. It doesn’t matter if some ham and swiss are exposed, and exact amounts will vary depending on the size of your croissant dough.
Brush the egg wash very lightly over the exposed areas of each croissant.
Place a small thin piece of swiss on top of each rolled croissant. If you like extra heat, you can sprinkle the cheese with a light dusting of red chile flakes.
Place the croissants on a cookie sheet pan and place in the pre-heated oven to bake for approximately 20-22 minutes or until the dough is golden-brown.
You can use your left-over green chile in any number of other incarnations, some of which are included in the great cookbook from the Santa Fe School of Cooking. And of course, if you travel for autumn in Santa Fe, you can buy your chile fresh, pack it in a two-day priority box and roast it on your own when you get home.
The second recipe request we always receive at the Inn is for the delicious Sangria served at our afternoon wine reception. While you can’t bring Charlie home to serve it to you, you can make this refreshing beverage to serve at your next patio party, preferably with a green chile appetizer! This liquid pleasure is so easy to put together, and you needn’t use a treasured bottle from your cellar to please your palate.
For the Inn’s Sangria Suprema:
In a 64 oz. pitcher: pour 1/3 to 1/2 bottle of any big, fruity wine (Syrah is good, and if there’s a Trader Joe’s handy, the three-buck Chuck reds will do fine). Add 3 tsps. superfine sugar, 1 1/2 cups fresh-squeezed orange juice (emphasis on fresh), and 1 1/2 shots of blackberry brandy. Fill the remainder of the pitcher with a decent lemon-lime soda. For a pretty presentation, you can float fresh fruit or fruit slices on top, and serve over cubed ice in a quality wine glass.
It’s that simple! Now you’re qualified to bring the red (sangria) and the green (chile) into your own home, to enjoy the memories and the taste of Santa Fe all over again!