Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Chile verde

D's grandma is up for a visit, and we had her over for a late lunch on Sunday. The last time she came over I made something that contained sundried tomato pesto and prosciutto, and although she was very sweet about it, I could tell that my scary gringa food kind of freaked her out.

This time, I played it safe and found a recipe for chile verde.


Chile verde (serves 6 - 8, recipe modified from this one)
  • 4 pounds pork 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
  • 3 jalapenos, seeds removed, cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 3 garlic cloves, peeled and roughly chopped
  • 1 1/2 pounds tomatillos, husked and roughly chopped
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1 bunch cilantro leaves, cleaned and chopped
  • 4 cups chicken stock

1. Toss the flour, salt and some pepper in a large ziploc bag. Add the pork, seal the bag, and mix it all around until the pieces are coated with flour.

2. Heat the oil in a large saucepan over medium high heat, and then brown the pork in small batches, transferring it to a plate when you finish one batch. Try not to burn yourself when the oil splatters.

3. Meanwhile, take the roughly chopped peppers, onions, garlic and tomatillos and spread them out on a large baking sheet. Roast in the oven (I use my broiler) until they are soft and the peppers are a bit blackened.

4. Pour the chicken broth into a pan and add the roasted veggies, the spices, and the cilantro. Blend it all thoroughly using an immersion blender. (If you don't have an immersion blender, I would recommend putting the roasted veggies into your food processor or blender and adding just a bit of broth and then blending it all together until it's pretty smooth. Then mix it in with the chicken stock.)

5. Add the browned pork to the sauce and simmer over low heat until the pork is very tender, approximately 3 hours.

6. Serve with rice and corn tortillas.

The verdict? It definitely went over better than the pesto. Everyone ate up every bit of their servings and some had seconds, including D's grandma.

The dish barely has any heat but it has lots of good flavor. I like spicy food, so next time I will definitely leave the seeds in at least one of the jalepenos to help remedy this. If you aren't into spicy food, don't be scared of the peppers, just make sure you get the jalepeno seeds thrown away, because the seeds are the spicy part.

Sorry, there are no pictures of the finished dish because I was too nervous about being a hostess to whip out the camera. Having D's mom and grandma over is still a bit nerve wracking, even though I've known them both for years. Why is that?


  1. what a sweet hostess you are...that dish sounds amazing, but agree that it might have seemed a bit presumptuous had you busted out the camera to document your finished meal.

  2. It sounds wonderful! My dear friend you have nothing to fear- you do everything beautifully! Yes taking out the camera would have been funny to see their faces.

    Our town is having a chili cook off I might just have to give this recipe a try!

  3. That's incredibly sweet - I'm sure D's mom was very touched. It's wonderful when someone takes the time to prepare something warm and inviting.

    I cried (twice) before Fauxhawk's mom came to visit. I was so nervous. I still worry and make a fuss. It's ingrained.

  4. how sweet that you take care of her traditions while she visits. I hope it turns out beautifully as it sounds like you're an amazing hostess.

  5. Super YUM! And great photo too! I'm craving something spicy!

  6. You are such a sweet hostess! I still get nervous around my husband's in-laws, even though they are the nicest people. The family came over for Thanksgiving, and I was shaking in my boots about burning the turkey or forgetting about the gravy! However, I did take photos of the extravaganza, which they are accustomed to, as I seem to have a camera attached to my left eye ;)

  7. P.S.-If you are ever in Albuquerque (the home of chile of all kinds), go to the Flying Star. They have biscuits and gravy where it is half green chile and half gravy. It is absolutely the greatest thing I have ever eaten, ever, in all the land. (You could try it with your leftovers!)

  8. that sounds like such a delicious dish to serve - i'm going to have to try it out!

    i'm slowly but surely getting braver with the spice, too, so maybe i'll just leave a few seeds in and (tentatively) work my way up the fireman ladder.

  9. ooh, sounds delicious! i'm bookmarking this one. thanks!

  10. This sounds so yummy. Now I'm quite upset that I've left the stocked kitchen at my parent's house to return to the 4x4 shoe box sized dorm kitchen :(


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