Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Santa must like to eat! (Chili Verde)

Let's see, Santa brings my wife, among other things, a new computer and a Blue-Ray DVD player. I get a new 9.5 quart enameled cast iron dutch oven and the full 10 years of America's Test Kitchen Cookbook. Around here, that's pretty normal. One year I got a wok and she got a CD player. So in my opinion, Santa must like to eat because I have new toys to play with in the kitchen! Chili Verde, here I come! Anyone have a great recipe?

Now before you start digging, I prefer the spicy New Mexico style of chili verde, at least I think I was in Albuquerque. We were traveling so much it might have been Tucson. No, I think it was Albuquerque. I am pretty sure that in New Mexico when asked if you want green or red, green is spicier than the red. in Arizona it was the opposite. Luckily I like spicy so when I got them confused I wasn't disappointed because while the red wasn't as spicy -- it was delicious. Now the poor Major I was traveling with . . . well let's just say he will never forget which is which!

So seriously, anyone have a really good recipe for spicy New Mexico-style Chili Verde? Here is a recipe I am thinking of scaling up, in volume and maybe in heat. I got it from the Food Channel, courtesy of Mary Sue Milliken & Susan Feniger! Yea, the 'Too Hot Tamales' themselves!

  • 4 pounds pork butt or shoulder, trimmed of fat and cut into 2-inch cubes
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • Flour for dredging
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 3 yellow onions
  • 2 green bell peppers, cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 2 Anaheim or Poblano chiles, cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 2-3 jalapenos, seeds removed, and finely chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves, peeled and finely chopped
  • 1 1/2 pounds tomatillos, roasted, peeled and chopped
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 2 tablespoons coriander seeds, crushed and soaked in a scant amount of water
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 bunch cilantro leaves, cleaned and chopped
  • 4 cups chicken stock


  • Season the pork meat generously with salt and pepper, lightly flour.
  • Heat oil in a heavy-bottomed skillet over medium high heat and brown pork chunks well in small batches, on all sides.
  • Lift pork out of pan and place in a wide soup pot.
  • Discard fat and place the onions and peppers in the same skillet and sweat over moderate heat, stirring occasionally until limp, about 5 minutes.
  • Add all of the chiles and cook an additional 3-4 minutes, then add the garlic and cook 1-2 minutes more.
  • Add the Sauteed vegetables, chopped tomatillos, dried herbs and cilantro to the meat, cover with the chicken stock and bring up to a boil and reduce to a slight simmer.
  • Cook for 2-3 hours uncovered or until the pork is fork tender.

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