Friday, January 24, 2014

Secret Sauce

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What's that one thing that you put on most things you eat?  You know, that one thing that your grandparents would have said was "good for your constitution"?

I may have mentioned before that I grew up in the alfalfa fields of northern New Mexico.  And the secret sauce up there is definitely green chile.  We put it on everything.  On our eggs, our hamburgers, in stews, casseroles and dips.  Even jelly and ice cream.  Imagine a green chile world where the celebrated Hatch green chile that Whole Foods romanticizes each Fall is only so-so in quality comparatively. 

It is amazing food.  Got a stuffy nose or a cold?  Spicy green chile clears the sinuses in a hurry.  Cold winter's eve?  Nothing warms the belly quite like green chile stew.  Warm summer's night?  Chile rellenos with sour cream.  It's the universal truth food.

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But alas, these days I live far from the green chile high country.  And aside from a few token bags of frozen green chile fillets my parents bring me when they visit, and the Hatch green chile week at Whole Foods, I just don't get enough to generously incorporate it into my diet.  There are substitutes (like poblanos) which are readily available in my local grocery store, but it's no, well, substitute.

So what do I use these days when I want to fortify my constitution?  I've actually fallen into the habit of using horseradish.  I put in on my sandwiches, salads, meats.  And the good stuff will definitely clear the sinuses in a rush.  Lucky for me, well prepared sauce is low calorie, and a little bit goes a long, long way.

I'm just waiting for the ice cream...

What's your secret sauce?