I just love souvenirs!
As I have mentioned previously, we just returned from a spring break ski trip to New Mexico. I had my sights set on my souvenir wish list long before I even started packing for the trip. I wanted Hatch green chili powder, preferably MILD. I also wanted Hatch red chili powder – mild, and a bonus would be to find smoked chili powder. As you can see in the above picture, I succeeded!!
As we were taking a scenic day trip from Tres Ritos to Santa Fe, I spotted a sign “Chilies for sale” in front of a house on the side of the highway. Next to the sign were hundreds of drying chili peppers hanging off the front porch. Ding Ding!! Just what I wanted, local chili powder — I was thrilled. But we couldn’t stop right then ((a four-year old NEEDED to make a pit stop and there are very few “pit stop” possibilities in that part of the world)).
We made it to Santa Fe just in time for lunch. We are a “Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives” kind of family. Every time we hit the road, we search for all of the restaurants Guy has been to and make a bee-line. In this case it was a restaurant called Tecolote Cafe and it was SO good!! The green chili cornbread muffins were sweet, spicy and crisp – just add butter, eat and beg for the recipe.
We did a little more sightseeing and headed back home – via Chimayo, home of my desired chili powder souvenir. We pulled up to the house, met the very nice man who makes and sells the chili powder and he gave us a little tour of his store. Guess what!? He had every type of chili powder I could imagine! Mild, medium, hot, red, green and smoked!! He also had dried posole, hava beans, dried oregano and dried sweet corn. I loaded up!! As a bonus, I got his phone number and email so I can order more when I run out. What a treat and prefect souvenir.
I love the type of souvenir that reminds my of how I acquired it, where I was, what culture I experienced etc. These the chili powders and dried corns and beans will do just that! Many tasty recipes to come thanks to my souvenirs.