We’re currently experiencing quite the heat spell over here in Los Angeles, but that isn’t going to stop me from devouring this entire pot of pozole that our family friend Blanca blessed us with. Being able to come home to a meal that’s already prepared and ready to go is really quite something else. Basically I just stepped into my boyfriend’s lucky shoes for the evening. (Right, Ben?)
When Blanca mentioned that she was going to make pozole over Father’s Day weekend, I couldn’t believe my ears when she said she could bring some over. I felt like the luckiest human on the planet. Blanca’s cooking skills are legendary, so I knew I was in for a treat. This traditional hominy stew isn’t your standard 30 minutes or less fare. It takes time and a lot of dedication to make this incredible dish, but I’ll be damned if it wasn’t the most delicious thing I ate all week.
Serves 4 – 6.
- 2 lbs bone in pork shoulder
- 1 white onion
- 6 garlic cloves
- 3 15 oz cans hominy
- 10 cups chicken broth
- 4 dried ancho chiles
- 1/3 cup dried chile de arbol
- 3 tsp cumin
- 2 bay leaves
- 2 tbsp dried oregano
- 2 tbsp + 2 tsp olive oil
- 1 bunch radishes
- a few sprigs of cilantro
- 1/4 head of green cabbage
- salt + pepper to taste
Kitchen Tools: dutch oven or thick bottomed stock pot, blender, tongs, wooden spoon
Cut the tops off the dried chiles and tap out the seeds if you don’t want your soup to be crazy spicy. Place the chiles into a bowl and pour in 2 cups of boiling water to rehydrate them. You can place a small plate on top of the chiles to keep them under the water. Let soak until soft, about 30 minutes.
While your chiles are soaking, dice your onions and finely mince your garlic. Rub the pork butt all over with cumin and about 2 tsp of salt. Once your chiles are ready, pour the contents of the bowl, soaking liquid and all, into the blender. Blend until smooth.
Heat 2 tbsp olive oil in the dutch oven on medium high heat. Sear the pork butt on all sides until completely browned. Remove and set aside on a plate. Add in the remaining 2 tsp of olive oil and reduce the heat to medium. Toss in the onions + a pinch of salt and cook for about 5 minutes until they begin to get translucent. Stir them with a wooden spoon every so often so that they don’t burn. Add garlic and cumin and cook for an additional minute before placing the pork butt back into the pot.
Pour chicken broth into the pot and add bay leaves, cumin, and a pinch of salt + pepper. Stir in 1/2 cup or 3/4 cup of the blended chile sauce, depending on how spicy you want your pozole. (I did 1/2 cup because I’m a baby).
Bring the contents of the pot to a low boil and reduce heat to a simmer. Cover the pot, leaving the lid slightly ajar to let some steam escape. Simmer for 3 hours, turning the pork butt every hour or so the keep it cooking evenly.
Drain hominy and stir it into the pot. Continue to simmer uncovered until the pork is falling off the bone (about 15-20 minutes). Use tongs to remove the bones and bay leaf. Taste for seasoning and add more salt or chile sauce if you’re feelin’ it.
Thinly slice radishes and cabbage. Chop up the cilantro, stems and all. Place these on the side as topping options for the pozole along with the remaining chile sauce.