Mains · Recipies · Soups

Green Pozole

This is another Pozole recipe people seem to get excited for. I believe the green pozole – or posole verde – is traditionally made with chicken, but I like the mellow, unctuous texture of pork with the citrus undertones of this soup. Unlike the red pozole, this one can easily be made with zero spiciness (if you buy the peppers canned, you can choose cans labeled “mild” instead of “hot”). It is very simple to made and is best done in a slow cooker.

(makes 6 servings)

tablespoon olive oil
1 pound ripe tomatillos, papers removed & rinsed
1 pound Anaheim peppers (fresh or canned)
1 white onion, diced
4 cloves garlic, minced

3 pounds cubed pork shoulder
2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon fresh cracked black pepper

2 cups chicken stock
2 tablespoons ground cumin
1 tablespoon Mexican oregano << not the same as Italian Oregano!
2 bay leaves
2, 25-oz cans white hominy, drained & rinsed

2 limes, sliced
Thinly sliced radishes
Fresh cilantro leaves
Thinly sliced green cabbage
Tortilla chips
Sliced avocado
Crumbled cotija cheese

** Let me be clear… I don’t usually make the home made version of this sauce. Sometimes it is just wayyyyy easier to buy a jar of “green enchilada sauce” and a large can of chopped, fire-roasted, “hot green peppers”. When I do this, it also turns out to be a delicious soup – no difference in flavor! The only reason I might make it fresh instead of canned is if you have a garden and/or access to fresh produce. Seriously.**

If you ARE making the homemade version, you need to roast the produce first. Heat the broiler and place the peppers, tomatillos, onion, and garlic in a large glass baking dish. Drizzle them with a bit of olive oil, and broil, turning with tongs every few minutes, until the skins are charred.

You probably want to remove the skins of the peppers after roasting them, so separate the peppers from the rest of the ingredients, and place them in a large bowl. Cover tightly with plastic wrap to allow them to steam. Once they are cool enough to touch, remove the skin, stems, and seeds.

Add the peppers, tomatillos, and onions/garlic in a food processor and pulse until they are combined into a luscious green sauce. Set aside.

Pork shoulders are very inexpensive and easy to locate. I find them a little too fatty for my liking so I trim as much of the fat from the roast as I can while I’m chopping it up. Cut the roast into smaller, 3 to 4″ pieces. Season generously with salt and pepper.

Heat a 3 tablespoons of oil or grease (I use bacon fat) in a large skillet over medium-high heat and brown the pork on as many sides as you can manage. If you have a “bone-in” roast, brown up the bone and cook it up too. Put the pork pieces, the green sauce, chicken stock, cumin, bay leaves, and Mexican oregano in there and let it cook for 4-5 hours on high heat. 

Once the pork is tender enough to pull apart with two forks, gently remove the pieces from the slow cooker to cool. At this point I like to skim as much of the fat off the soupy part as I can. I use one of those gravy fat separators. It’s just too much grease and the soup doesn’t need it. Once the pork is cooled down, shred it into smaller bits with your hands or two forks, and return it to the slow cooker with the green soup base. Toss in the hominy and let everything slow-cook on high for another 30 minutes before eating.

A huge part of this recipe is the presentation! You can choose any or all of these crunchy, sour, salty, creamy toppings. Squeeze some lime juice into each bowl of pozole and top with cabbage, radish, and cilantro, chips, avacado, and/or cotija. Serve with additional lime slices.

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