Part 6 : One Can of Dried Posole (two cans left)
Posole is a New Mexican dish especially popular on the holidays and I love to keep that tradition each year. I have been making posole every winter even when we live somewhere where there is no winter. New Mexican food is a whole new cuisine for me and I am still learning. As a matter of fact, the last few times I tried posole I was not very successful and I have been trying to figure out why. Last year, we met our New Mexican friend, Peggy, here in Liberia. She kindly invited us to her house for New Year Posole last year. The posole was really good and I asked her to teach me how to make posole. Peggy told me the secret; "don't cook posole and meat in the same pot". That's it. I also remember that she put some pinto beans in it which I had never tried so I added that change as well.
So last week I tried the new recipe for this spicy hominy stew since my husband had been sick and he needed a bit of homestyle comfort food. I followed Peggy's secret and cooked posole in one pot for three hours and pork in the pressure cooker separately. It turned out really well. Another important point is to make sure the hominy is soft but not mushy, and if you add meat, it needs to be really soft and melting.
To make it more flavorful, I used homemade chicken stock and combined it with the cooking liquid from pork. I also added some cilantro leaves. And of course, some New Mexican green chili mix and some red chili powder to make it even better.
I think this was the best posole I ever tasted.... I hope my husband agrees with it. [Editor's note: he does!].
2-1/3 cups dried posole
1.5 - 2lb pork shoulder, chop or loin ..... diced
1tbsp garlic powder
1 tsp pepper corn
1 bay leaf
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1-1/2 cups onion ...... chopped
3 garlic cloves ..... minced
2 teaspoons chili powder (preferably New Mexican chili)
1 teaspoon ground coriander
3 tablespoons roasted green chile ..... chopped
1 tablespoon kosher salt
1/2 cup cilantro leaves ..... chopped
4 cups chicken stock
1. Put cleaned posole in a stock pot and cover with cold water by 3 inches. Cook the posole and simmer for 2 - 3 hours until the posole is soft and bursted. Add some water as needed.
2. Meanwhile, cook the pork with water, garlic powder, pepper corn and bay leaf until very tender. You can use a crock pot or a pressure cooker (I use a pressure cooker). Discard the bay leaf and reserve the cooking water.
3. When the posole is done, drain and rinse with cold water. Set aside.
4. In a large pot, heat oil and sauté the onion until golden brown. Add the garlic and sauté for another minute. Add the posole, chili powder, ground coriander and 1/4 cup for the cilantro and sauté for another minute. Add chicken stock and reserved cooking water from the pork. Simmer for 30 min.
5. Add the salt and continue simmering for another 30 min.
6. Add the pork and continue simmering for 30 min. Adjust with salt and pepper if you wish.
7. Stir in remaining cilantro and serve with warm tortilla