Thursday, December 31, 2009

Mexican Pork Stew

Today, we moved out of Asia and into Mexico for a change.

We cooked Shredded Pork Stew with Smoky Chipotle Tomato Sauce from "Simply Mexican" by Lourdes Castro.
You will need the following ingredients:
1 lb pork shoulder (I used pork tenderloin)
2 bay leaves
3 cloves garlic (2 crushed, 1 chopped)
1 lb fresh Mexican Chorizo***
1 sliced onion
1 tsp salt
1 1/2 lbs plum tomatoes cored and sliced
2 canned chipotle chiles, chopped
1/4 cup adobo sauce from canned chipotles
1/2 tsp oregano
2 sprigs fresh thyme
2 sprigs fresh marjoram

*** for the Mexican Chorizo, I used her recipe in the same book. You will need:
2 cloves garlic
1 tsp salt
1/2 cup red wine vinegar
1/2 tsp black pepper
1 tsp sugar
3 tbls ancho chile powder
1 canned chipotle
1 tbsp adobo sauce from canned chipotle
2 tbsp water
1 lb lean ground beef
1 lb ground pork
-combine the garlic, salt, vinegar, pepper, oregano, sugar, chile powder, chipotle, adobo sauce and water in a blender. Puree until you have a smooth paste. Mix the ground meats together and then add the pureed mixture. Place the mixture on parchment paper and wrap tightly, then refrigerate overnight.

Now, on to making the stew.
Put the pork in a pan and cover it with water by 1 inch. Add the bay leave and crushed garlic. Bring to a boil, skimming the foam off that rises. Simmer for approximately 45 minutes or until tender. When cooked, reserve 1 cup of the stock and then shred the pork and set aside.

Now, heat 1 tbsp of olive oil in a saucepan. Add the chorizo and cook until golden brown and the fat begins to render. Once cooked, remove the chorizo with a slotted spoon. Add the other 1 tbsp of olive oil to the pan and saute the onion and remaining garlic until translucent. Add in the shredded pork and saute for about 3 minutes. Then you will de-glaze the pan by using a few tbsp of the reserved pork stock. To finish the stew, you will add the chorizo, tomatoes, chipotles, adobo sauce, oregano, thyme and marjoram to the pan. Stir well and simmer for about 5 minutes. Add the remaining pork stock and continue simmering for 25 minutes.
It should look like this:

We served the stew in soft tortillas, but Ms. Castro recommends using tortilla chips as well as Mexican Crema. As we live in Okinawa, the Crema is no where to be found, so tortillas worked for us. We also added a little extra chipotles as these are not readily available here either and I have to mail order them. To make it economical, I buy the biggest can I can get and then freeze any unused at the time into portion sizes that we like, which is typically about sizes of 4. This was good and will probably be something that we repeat.

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