Do you remember scratch and sniff books? I always wanted to write and illustrate a children’s scratch and sniff book with scents that remind me of my childhood. But for some reason I don’t think the aromas that brought me joy as a child will appeal to kids today.
One of the scents that remind me of my childhood is the warm smoky smell of roasted chile. My grandma roasted chile frequently for her salsa casera (homemade salsa) and I have always loved that smell. When I smell chile roasting and hear it popping and hissing, its as-if I can see my grandma cooking in her kitchen. My grandma passed away in 2004, but the memories of her will always live in my heart.
Scratch and sniff…
My grandma roasted chile on a comal (iron griddle), but my mom roasts chile in the oven broiler. There is no right way or wrong way to roast chile. The flavor is the same. Here is a short and simple video showing you my moms simple technique.
How to Roast Chile Peppers
- Green chile peppers, Anaheim or Hatch
- Preheat broiler.
- Select firm, meaty peppers without wrinkles. Rinse thoroughly to remove dust particles.
- Place peppers evenly in a single layer on a foil-lined cookie sheet. Pierce each chile with a knife.
- Place under broiler. Watch them closely as the skin will blister and turn black within minutes. Turn the peppers after 3 to 5 minutes to blister all sides evenly. When done, the pepper skins should be evenly blistered and mostly black.
- Place roasted peppers in a plastic bag, cover with a wet kitchen towel and when cool, peel off blackened skin. Tear open and pull out the seed pod and stem unless you are making chile rellenos. In which case you will simply remove the stem carefully along with the seeds, leaving the chile intact for stuffing.
Video by Pure Cinematography