I bought a case of Hatch chiles the other day. Most of the chiles ended up being roasted, but I kept a few for these sausage-stuffed Hatch chiles. Now I’m wishing that I’d kept a bunch more of the un-roasted peppers on hand because they sure make some fantastic dishes. I could’ve served this as an appetizer or as a main dish. I went the main dish route, and backed up the truck. I wasn’t shy about how many I put on my plate. There were no leftovers. Sausage and bacon, with a hint of fennel on a grilled chile with just a bit of cheese. Smoked low and slow. Like a fancy jalapeno popper, sort of.
For a kicked-up version substitute spicy sausage and add a few good-sized pinches of red pepper flake to the meat mixture. Oh, and use a nice pepper jack or even habanero jack cheese for that extra creamy kick.
For a healthier version, skip the cheese and bacon and use turkey sausage. You might want to up the seasonings though.
You can also make these sausage-stuffed Hatch chiles on your grill, be it charcoal or gas. Just cook them over indirect heat, trying to keep the temperatures fairly low as to not over-cook them.
- 10 large Hatch green chiles
- 2 pounds Sweet Italian pork sausage (casings removed if using sausages)
- 1 teaspoon ground fennel seeds
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1 teaspoon granulated garlic
- 1 pound bacon, cooked, chopped
- Shredded cheese, if desired
- Fire up a smoker for smoking at 250 F. Use any wood you desire.
- Slice the chiles horizontally. Remove the membrane and seeds.
- Combine the sausage, fennel, pepper and garlic in a bowl.
- Divide the sausage between the peppers, gently pushing down to fill them completely.
- Sprinkle the peppers with the bacon.
- Smoke for 1 1/2 hours.
- Sprinkle with cheese (if using) and smoke until the cheese has melted.