Sunday, November 16, 2008

Pozolé Rojo (Red Mexican Hominy & Pork Stew)

Pozole is a popular Mexican stew with Hominy and Pork. The most traditional common one is the red one, but there is a green version "Pozole Verde" (colored with tomatillos and other stuff) and "Pozole Blanco" which has a clear broth. Even though there are different versions it's generally called "Pozole" and when people refer to "Pozole" they are usually thinking of the red version which in my opinion is the most delicious. Other variation use purple hominy. In Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico the popular Pozole is "Pozole Verde" and "Pozole Blanco" in the rest of Mexico I think the red is the most popular. My mother's family is from Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico, but my mother was born in Michoacan (her mom was on vacation there) and spent much there although she also spent time in Guadalajara, Jalisco, but she is more fond of the red one.

My mother makes the best "Pozole", other people's Pozole (usually the one's from the store and some other's I've tried) are very bland, and some use Chicken and let me tell you Pozole with Chicken is not Pozole it is inferior to the pork kind. I like Chicken but not in Pozole. Real Pozole should be made with pork. I hear some say, "Vamos acer Pozole de Pollo" me and some others say, "Que eso no es Pozole yo no se que es eso" just look around at other Pozole recipes and look at mine... it'll be obvious mine is best ;) (hate to sound cocky but it's really delicious compared to other peoples Pozole's trust me if you like Pozole this will make you love it more, if you don't like Pozole this will change your mind, if you don't like this Pozole your crazy :)

-2 6 lbs. can of Hominy
-1 1/2 lbs. meaty pork neck bone (Espinazo de Puerco) cut into large chunks
-1 lbs. pork spare ribs medium chunks
-3 lbs. pork butt/ or pork shoulder big large chunks
-2 lbs. pork feet
-1 tbsp. dried oregano
-1 tbsp. ground black pepper
-2 medium onions (peeled, and left whole)
-2 whole garlic heads (ugly outer layer removed but clean layer left, and stab it a bit)
-4 large bay leaves
-1/4 cup and 1 tablespoon salt
-12 dried California Chilies (Chile California also known as Anaheim Pepper, California Chile, it has to be dried, it has very mild almost to now heat)
-6 cloves of garlic peeled
-3 large tomatoes (or 6 canned whole peeled seeded tomatoes)
-2 tablespoons ground cumin

Sides and garnishes: (prepare the sides while the stew is cooking)
-Tostadas (crispy deep-fried corn tortilla)
-Hot sauce (any type of red colored one such as "Salsa de Chile de Arbol")
-thinly sliced shredded cabbage (soaked in water chilled)
-minced onion
-radishes cut into flowers (soaked in water chilled)
-dried oregano
-avocado (optional)
-fresh wedged limes

(1)Soak the "Chile California" overnight to rehydrate them, set them, or boil them until tender)

(2)Blend them in a blender in small batches with the tomato and garlic cloves until you obtain a thick loose sauce use some of the water from boiling to help it blend, stir in ground cumin. Set aside.

(3)Meanwhile bring one medium pot of water to a boil (to clean pork feet), and 1 large pot of water to a boil (for the rest of the stew)

(4)While waiting for pots to boil do all prep. work.

(5) Wash all the meats well, rub them with salt and fresh limes and lime juice, rinse and drain several times.

(6)In the medium pot bring pork feet and water to a boil until the nasty foam rises, now drain it and set aside the pork feet.

(7)In the LARGE POT really big, filled half way with water I would say 6 liters or more (use common sense I'm not sure), add oregano, pepper, onion, garlic, bay leaves, and salt. Add pork spare rib, meaty pork neck bone, pork shoulder, and pork feet. Bring to boil. Cover and simmer 1 hour and 30 minutes.

(8)During the time it's cooking, open the two large cans of Hominy and drain and rinse, when 1 hour and 30 minutes pass remove the onion and garlic (fish them out ha ha), add the hominy, and the California Chile sauce add it BUT STRAIN IT, using some of the hot broth to help you strain out as much sauce as possible throw away the leftover, let it boil uncovered.

(9)While boiling in a seperate pot without water, remove pork feet, neck bones, and ribs because they should be very tender, but let the pork shoulder meat stay in there 30 more minutes uncovered to intensify the flavor, turn of heat, pour some broth into the seperate pot (ladle it in) to keep meat warm in the other one, and when you want to re-heat just let it simmer.

(10)When serving serve in large bowls, everyone can get the boneless pork meat in the stew with hominy and the seperate cut of meats they can choose whatever they want.

(11)Serve with the sides to taste (as much or as little as you want of any side) like some shredded cabbage on top, then a little minced onion, some ground oregano over it to taste, and hot sauce to taste, lastly some avocado if desired scooped over it.

IMPORTANT NOTE: When buying canned cooked Hominy do NOT BUY the brand "Juanita's" it is the absolute worse. Juanitas brand comes with these little heads on the corn that doesn't let it puff or soften well and it's sharp. Make sure it has no heads. I forgot the name of the brand we bought but it starts with a "Z" if you buy a brand with heads you'll have to remove em to get the best Pozole :)

ALSO: This makes a really large portion feel free to cut recipe in half, the next day it can be consumed for breakfast, my mother will seperate the hominy from the broth, heat a couple spoonfuls of pork lard on high heat until almost smoke point and sautee the hominy then pour the hot broth and meat into the pot this is called "Pozole Guisado" and is really good for breakfast the smokey pork fat gives great taste and the nutty sautee's hominy YUM!

P.S. This post was for everyone but more for one of my blog reader's who calls himself "Mamey" whom wanted a good Pozole recipe, so here it is enjoy :)