I finally caught up with the 21st century, people. Erik bought me a Kitchen Aid food processor and I am having some fun with it. Circumstance kind of kept me from getting one in the past – either no room to store it or they were too expensive but since this was a gift from Erik (and probably a bribe by way of apology for being so messy in my house, let’s be honest) I don’t feel bad about having one. Plus I’m already a brand enthusiast when it comes to Kitchen Aid because I love my stand mixer Talullah Grape so much. After processing two batches of salsa, some tomatillo sauce, cutting the butter into my dry ingredients for my Sunday biscuits, pureeing cooked cherries for cherry frozen yogurt, AND grating cheese (because I hate to grate cheese by hand), the machine was officially added to my “things to grab first in case of fire.” You can quote me on that, too. I mean it. It made short work of our Sunday supper, pureeing rehydrated ancho and New Mexican chiles in a matter of seconds. All told, dinner took perhaps 90 minutes. Even got done in time to watch True Blood at 7. That’s efficiency, ya’ll.
This north Mexican dish is like eating a more peppery and saucy version of carnitas – you slow cook pork down until it is soft and gone crispy from rendering out its fat, then cook it some more with a puree of chiles. It reminds me a lot of chile colorado, and scooped up into flour tortillas with some refried beans, it’s pretty homey and satisfying.
recipe from Pati’s Mexican Table
* I’m giving you exact measurements because I think it’d be confusing otherwise. I cut this down considerably for two people and added dried New Mexican chiles to the dried ancho mix just because I could. Feel free to make it exactly as it’s written. It’s delicious either way
3 lbs. boneless pork cut into 2 inch cubes (leave some of the fat on the pork)
1 1/4 cup orange juice
1 1/4 cup water
a teaspoon salt
3 dried ancho chiles and 2 dried New Mexican chiles
1 1/2 cups chile soaking liquid
1/2 cup white onion, rough chopped
4 garlic cloves, peeled
1/2 cup parsley or cilantro
a teaspoon dried oregano
1/4 teaspoon dried comino
a few grinds of black pepper
2/3 cup vinegar (white is fine)
3 Tablespoons oil
some more salt
chopped onion and cilantro, lime wedges, etc.
Place your pork in a large pot with the water, orange juice, and a teaspoon of salt. Set it over high heat and boil. Reduce to medium and let it simmer until the liquid is all gone and the fat has rendered out. This took me about an hour. While that’s going, set the chile’s in a bowl. Bring a pot of water to boil and pour that water (carefully) onto the chile’s. Cover and let them rehydrate for about 20 minutes or so. Place the rehydrated chile’s, the onion, garlic, 1 1/2 cups of the chile’s soaking liquid, parsley or cilantro, comino, oregano, pepper, and vinegar in your food processor. Process it until smooth. I strained all the seeds and chunky bits out by pouring the puree into another bowl through a fine mesh sieve. When the meat is done, shred it if you want (we left ours in chunks) and remove to another bowl. In the same pot, heat the oil (if you need it – I found that I didn’t need that extra 3 Tablespoons of oil. There was enough in the pot already from my cooked pork). Add your chile puree and let it simmer for a few minutes. Toss in your cooked pork and season with some salt. Let it cook until the meat has absorbed most of the sauce and it is slightly thickened. I served ours with beans and assorted chopped vegetables.