Should you find yourself in Santa Fe anytime soon, and please do, you and yours will not be at all disappointed to feast on the simple and hearty fare called Green Chile Breakfast Casserole. Of course, you would have to have a kitchen. Rent an adobe house or condo. They’ve got ’em in spades, with blue doors.
They’ve also got courtyards that invite you to stay awhile.
Don’t mind if I do.
And there’s art, even on mailboxes.
Inviting parks with fountains and crisp, early morning blue skies,
A couple of cathedrals…
You know, the usual.
And there are pesky, annoying mountain views, constantly reminding you that you’re no longer in the mitten.
And if those aren’t enough to entice you…
…maybe the giant horse head will.
But Santa Fe, for me, was all about the food, especially the ubiquitous chile (um, oh, and the margarita).
Red chiles abound but the green ones, they are strictly of the New Mexican diet (according to cowboy John Wayne, who incidentally hales from my mitten state and just so happened to ride his horse all the way from the Great Lakes to the Land of Enchantment, but that’s another story. His to tell. Go ride a horse with him.)
Can’t decide between red or green? They’ve got that covered too. Ask for “Christmas.” Adorable.
Truth be told, I knew the following recipe would fit our New Mexican vibe well when I toted it along, but I make it fairly often at home, especially when there are overnight guests to feed. Regular grocery store canned green chiles work quite well but when in New Mexico, it’s all about the hatch chile. If you can find them, use them.
Green Chile Breakfast Casserole
This recipe was first presented to me by a friend who was in charge of a girls’ weekend breakfast up north, many years ago. I have no idea where she got it, but it has stuck with me. Putting it here will ensure I don’t ever lose it. It serves 6-8 and is just as good the next day.
Warning: Start this the night before.
- 5-6 flour tortillas
- 2 small cans diced green chiles, drained
- 3 cups grated mozzarella cheese
- 5 eggs
- 2 cups milk
- 1 tsp. salt
Spray, butter or coat a 9 x 13 pan with olive oil. Put half of the tortillas on the bottom of the pan. Try not to overlap but you can tear them to fit. Spoon one can of the green chiles evenly over the tortillas and layer half the cheese. Repeat with a second layer of tortillas, chiles and cheese.
In a large bowl, whisk the eggs, salt and milk. Pour over the layered tortillas, chiles and cheese. Cover and place in the refrigerator overnight.
The next morning, preheat oven to 350°, uncover and bake for 45 minutes. Let stand 5 minutes before serving.
Serve with sour cream, pico de gallo, guacamole or whatever else strikes that fancy of yours.