Sep 272012

Calabacita is Spanish for squash, but in New Mexico it can mean a dish made from squash. This is a recipe from New Mexico that came via Char Welch, whose sister lives in Santa Fe. Of course I modified it a bit, I always do.

The reason I got the recipe is because we have a wonderful new grocery store in town, Heinens, out of Cleveland, Ohio. A couple of weeks ago they were roasting Hatch chili peppers in their parking lot. I didn’t know a Hatch pepper from a hole in the ground, but I bought a couple of pounds of them, anyway. They were roasted, but the skin needed to be scraped off and the seeds removed, which I did. I used some in a couple of recipes and froze the rest.

Char bought a bunch, since she knew what they were, a staple of southwestern cookery, and a product of the town of Hatch, New Mexico. That’s why she gave me the recipe.

I will usually try recipes a few times before I put them on the website, but this one is a winner so here it is. I didn’t use Hatch peppers in the recipe, but my home-grown Hungarian banana peppers.

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Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 15 minutes

Category: Mexican, Side Dish, Vegetable, Vegetarian

Author: Mark Karney


  • 2 medium zucchini (or mixture of green and yellow)
  • 2 Tbsp. of olive oil
  • 1 medium onion
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 1 12 oz. bag frozen corn
  • 4 or 5 roasted chili or Hungarian or chili peppers (Mixture of sweet and hot according to taste)
  • 1/2 to 3/4 cup cheddar, jack, or mexican cheese blend


  1. Peel & chop the peppers.
  2. In a large skillet, saute the onion, garlic and zucchini in the oil until they just starts to brown.
  3. Thaw the corn under warm water and mix it in along with the chopped peppers.
  4. Cover and heat through.
  5. Mix in the cheese and serve.


The roasted peppers really add to the taste. Put the peppers on a grill and roast until they are thoroughly blackened. Then place them in a bowl, cover with plastic wrap, and allow them to cool. At this point, it will be easy to remove the skins. Then remove the stem end and seeds and chop.

You can used canned, diced chili's if you don't want tot go to the trouble of doing your own roasting.

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