Pozole Rojo – Red Pozole with Pork
I have eaten pozole countless times so preparing this dish brought back many fond memories. One of my favorite memories is of my father rushing out of the house early Sunday morning with one of my mother’s pots in hand. He would stand in line at one of the neighborhood’s bakeries and bring back a pot full of pozole and fresh-baked bread for us to enjoy. Pozole is popular during the holiday seasons while menudo, which is prepared the same way but made with beef instead of pork, is found year round in many Mexican restaurants. It isn’t as complicated to make as it may seem. Try it!
5 liters water
4-5 lb. uncooked pork cut into small, bite-size cubes, fat removed
24-28 dried Guajillo chile pods
4 cups white hominy
1 small white onion
5 garlic cloves
2 bay leaves
2 tbsp. ground dried cumin
Toppings and sides:
1/4 head of cabbage, thinly sliced
1 cup sliced radish
red pepper flakes
ground dried oregano
– Remove stems and seeds from chile pods and rinse under cold water. Place chili pods in a large pot and cover with water. Once the water begins to boil, turn the heat off. Cover, and let the chiles sit for 20-30 minutes. After 20-30 minutes have passed, take the chiles out and place them in a large blender. Add 1 cup of the water they soaked in, onion, and garlic cloves. Blend until smooth and set aside.
– In a large pot, add five liters of water, 2 tbsp. of salt, and pork. Cook on medium heat for approx. 1 hr. After one hour, add 3 cups of the red sauce you have set aside. Bring to a boil.
– Add hominy, bay leaves, and oregano. Stir and continue to cook for 1 hour and 30 minutes.
– At this point, you can adjust the seasonings but take note that the broth the pork cooked in contained salt. I suggest you wait until the meat is fully cooked, taste the broth, and add more salt if needed.
Total cooking time is approx. 2 hours 30 minutes, up to 3 hours. Cutting the pork into small pieces will make the cooking process easier.
When you are ready to serve it, top with cabbage, radishes, oregano, and red pepper flakes if desired for an extra kick! Serve with limes and fresh-baked bread.