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SOCO Student Media from Colorado State University Pueblo

The Today

SOCO Student Media from Colorado State University Pueblo

The Today

SOCO Student Media from Colorado State University Pueblo

The Today

Chile roasting & art


By Hailee Langowski 


Walking through Union Ave. at the Chile & Frijoles Festival, it was hard to focus on one activity as there were so many! 

The festivities included vendors selling Pueblo chile-infused food, sweets and beverages. Various clothing and jewelry vendors had set up shop, as well as local artists. Different artwork mediums were displayed, including metal art or digital print. There was so much to take in. 

Although the crowd was busy browsing vendor tents and throwing axes for game prizes, it was not hard to miss the roasting of Pueblo chiles. 

The large rotating barrels of heat contain multiple Pueblo chile peppers roasted to eat and enjoy. One vendor, Musso Farms, had three different stations for roasting chile at the festival. 

Drake Carter, a member of Musso Farms’ “Chile Roasting Crew,” said it was one of his first times roasting chiles with the “Musso Farms Chili Peppers” stand, but roasting chiles has always been a part of he and his wife’s lives. 

“Chile has been a part of my life for a long time,” he said. 

He explained while working; they have different stations. The crew roasted mild, medium and hot at each station. “Those are all different styles: Anaheim, Poblanos, Pueblo [chile] also called Mirasols, and Dynamite chile.” 

They were working on “charring the skin” off the peppers as we spoke. The method breaks the skin off the pepper and releases what they call the “meat” on the inside. When it is charred, the crew sprays the large barrels with water; the steam removes the skin and cleans the chile off at the end. 

“Pueblo chile is a Pueblo thing… a lot of strong emotions get kind of spurred up when someone mentions Pueblo chile. It goes good on everything, and I know everyone loves to eat it. It’s great for the community, it makes a lot of jobs and it makes for a good time too!” 

Musso Farms is located at 35779 Hillside Rd. They are open for the season every day between 8 am to 6 pm. The Musso Farms “Chile Room” provides products such as Pueblo chile, Pueblo chile powders, chile-infused food, chile spices, salsa and dips, fresh popcorn and seasonings. 

Another vendor was the “Legend Brand,” selling salsa and chili powder. They also had complex and delicate art pieces hanging around their stand made from chile bushels. The crew was busy taking, selling and providing orders as there were many excited customers. 

Working at the stand, Marie explained how they create the chile bushels into different art pieces. Some were in the shape of a cross or a wreath. 

“[We] start with a little bunch [of chiles] and wrap a string around the stems; slowly twisting and building them [together],” Marie said. 

She mentioned the wreath and crosses take a lot of hours and hard work, but the final product is irreplaceable. 

Throughout the festivities, it was apparent that Pueblo chile can be creatively manipulated in food dishes, art and through other outlooks. The Chile & Frijoles Festival is a perfect event demonstrating how agriculture and business can bring together communities from all over that celebrate the Pueblo chile in various ways. 

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