This is one of those dishes that elevates what we think of Mexican food to another level. My kids idea of Mexican food is usually a plain cheese quesadilla. I can sometimes get them to eat black beans, and one of them loves to make his own guacamole. Overall it’s a pretty Americanized version of Mexican food around here. That being said, we love the snacky street tacos we can get almost anywhere in Portland served out of little food trucks. I wanted to try to recreate that succulent, spiced, and addictive pork they serve. I started searching online and found a recipe from Bon Appetit. I altered it quite a bit to suit our taste, and the results were fabulous. Sweet, spicy, tender, and perfect for topping with whatever you like.
- 6 large dried ancho or pasilla peppers (they are very similar, but anchos are a little sweeter, both are mild)
- 2 1/2 T. sugar
- zest and juice of 1 lime
- 4-5 lb. pork shoulder, butterflied to lay flat
- 2 t. coarse salt
- 2 T. canola oil
- 1 large onion, sliced
- 5 cloves garlic. minced
- 2 bay leaves
- 2 tsp. dried oregano
- 2 tsp. ground coriander
- 4 tsp. ground cumin
- 1/2 tsp. ground allspice
- 1 bottle Negro Modelo or other dark beer
Heat a few cups of water to boiling. Use scissors to cut out the ribs and seeds inside the chilies. Put the chilies in a bowl and cover them with the boiling water. Soak for thirty minutes, or until tender. Reserve the liquid. Place the chilies in a blender with the sugar, lime juice and zest. Add enough soaking liquid to make a smooth paste. Start with about 3/4 C. Add more liquid to thin if you need to. It should be the consistency of pesto. Meanwhile, butterfly the pork shoulder so that it lays flat and has a relatively consistent thickness. Sprinkle it all over with the salt. Heat a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat with the canola oil. Brown the pork on all sides, about four minutes per side for a nice brown crust. Remove the pork to a plate. Heat the oven to 350 degrees. Add the onion, garlic, and herbs and spices to the pork drippings in the Dutch oven. Brown for one minute. Add the beer and scrape all the brown bits from the bottom of the pan. Put the pork back into the Dutch oven and pour the chili mixture over it. Spread the chili mixture all over the pork. Place the lid on the pot and put the while thing in the oven. Braise for 2 1/2 to 3 hours, basting with the juices every 30 or 40 minutes. You can serve the pork as-is with some pan juices poured over it, or you can shred it for tacos and top it with crunchy radishes and cool, shredded cabbage.
Posted in Gluten Free, Uncategorized
Tagged ancho chili braised pork, ancho chilies, braised pork shoulder, chili sauce, easy, mexican food, pasilla pepper, pork tacos, slow cooked, street tacos
This is the perfect week for a cocktail party. There are just a few days left before you make your clean-living New Year’s resolution, so now is your chance to live it up! I like to have one or two signature drinks as opposed to a full bar. I also like to have a drinks area that is clearly self-serve, so that I don’t have to do any mixing during the party. Here are some of my favorite recipes for a cocktail party.
Cava and Rose Cocktail
Tamarind Whiskey Sour
Two Lemony Cocktails
Don Draper’s Canadian Club Manhattan
Original Trader Vic’s Mai Tai
Fig and Ricotta Canapes
Crab Bread Puddings
Roasted Shrimp Cocktail
Smoky Links Forever
Chicken Liver Mousse
White Bean Crostini
Posted in Drinks and Cocktails, Holidays and Special Occasions
Tagged appetizers, canape, cava, champagne, cocktail party, crostini, easy, finger food, lemon, mai tai, new years eve, prosecco, rum, simple, sour, whiskey
Every year I like to try a new special recipe that I’ve never done before. Last year it was a crown roast of pork. This year it was a spectacular prime rib. Prime rib is also called a standing rib roast. The “prime” refers to the quality of the meat- as in USDA Prime. If you were to slice an uncooked prime rib and remove the bones, you would have ribeye steaks. This recipe is extremely easy to do – you literally throw it in the oven and ignore it for about two hours. As with any meat, allow it to rest before carving. Plan on ordering your rib roast in advance, it’s not something every butcher keeps on hand. You should order about 1 lb. per person. Most of the time, you will pay between 10 and 14 dollars per pound, so it might be best to save it for a smaller group.
- 1 5-6 lb. standing rib roast, bone-in
- 3 cloves of garlic, minced
- 1 T. fresh rosemary leaves, chopped
- 1/4 C. prepared cream horseradish (hot if you like)
- 1/3 C. Kosher salt
- 3 T. coarse ground black pepper
- 1/3 C. olive oil
Bring the roast to room temperature – take it out of the fridge about 30 minutes before roasting and place it in a roasting pan with the bones on the bottom. Heat the oven to 350 degrees. Combine all the remaining ingredients into a thick paste and spread it all over the top of the roast. Roast for 1 1/2 to 2 hours. Take the roast out of the oven when a thermometer reads 125-130 degrees for medium rare. Let it rest for at least 25 minutes before carving. Serve with more horseradish on the side.