This is a recipe I make at the restaurant. It’ll feed twenty or more, but you can easily scale it down to make a small batch (cut it in half! or quarter!). The Hatch chile harvest starts next month and I always get homsick for AZ around that time. Big black monsoons, the smell of flame roasted chiles on the side of the road, fields of wild sunflowers and skyrocket gilia. I don’t get to go home much, but if I’m feeling nostalgic I’ll just have a bowl of pozole with a fried egg and corn tortilla.
Plan ahead. This should be a two day project.
10 lbs pork shoulder, fat trimmed, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
1 lb dried hominy*, soaked overnight and simmered until soft
1 quart anaheim peppers, flame roasted (or grilled until blackened) then steamed, peeled and roughly chopped
1 quart tomatillos, de-husked, roasted at 450 degrees until soft and skins are dark, roughly chopped
2 onions, medium dice
1 c. garlic sliced
1 quart zucchini, cubed
3 Tbsp Mexican oregano*
4 Tbsp cumin seed, toasted and ground with mortar and pestle
1/2 C. white vinegar
2 gallons chicken stock**
1 Tbsp each ground cumin and coriander to season the pork
salt to taste
***optional: a couple cups cooked pinto beans or long grain rice
- Lay the cubed pork out on a sheet tray and season with salt and pepper, the coriander and cumin. This can be done the night before which allows the pork to “cure”. It enhances the flavor of the meat.
- Once you have all the ingredients listed above you’re ready to go. Sear the pork shoulder in cast iron or carbon steel. You want to get your pan smoking hot. We use a blended oil (olive and veggie). The hot oil helps give you a nice caramelized brown edge. Don’t crowd the pan, either. Add the pork in batches, one layer at a time, get some good browning, set aside, clean the pan, add another layer, etc.
- When we’re making a pork stew with ten pounds of pork it’s necessary to use a rondeau. After the pork is all seared off, heat up more oil in the rondeau (enough to cover the bottom), add the onions and garlic until onions are clear. Don’t burn it. Add the zucchini and spices and sauté until nice and fragrant.
- Add the seared pork and its juices, tomatillos, anaheim peppers, the drained hominy, chicken stock, a pinch of salt, and vinegar. Bring up to a boil, then turn heat down to low and cover. After 45-60 minutes check the pork. It should be tender.
- As the stew cools add a bunch of chopped cilantro and enough salt to taste.
Serving it Up
Ladel the stew into a bowl, top with a sunnyside egg, and fried corn tortilla strips (or some crushed corn tortilla chips). Serve with a hot corn tortilla, lime, cilantro, sliced green onions.
* The hominy and Mexican oregano come from Rancho Gordo. I cannot stress enough how amazing their products are. I highly recommend you buy your hominy and oregano (and chili powder, and beans…) from them.
** I realized this is a lot of stock and most people don’t have it available. You can easily cut this in half and add water. Chef secret: we like to a use a mix of duck stock and cold water. It adds an extra bit of richness and flavor since the duck bones are roasted first, but not totally all duck stock since it’s thicker than normal stock.
*** Occasionally we’ll have extra pinto beans already prepared laying around. I’ll throw them in with the stew while it’s simmering. Or a couple cups of cooked rice. Adds nice texture and a bit of thickness too.