Slow-Cooked Pork in Tequila

It’s a fairly simple recipe, calling for pork butt and ribs to be cooked slowly on the stove-top in a chili sauce, then finished up with a quick simmer in tequila. The book recommends serving it with “Pot Beans” and rice, so I made both those recipes as well. And even though it may not be traditional, I decided to make a Michoacan Avocado Salsa to serve with the pork and rice and beans, for a little punch of brightness and color. The combination of the four dishes? Phenomenal. I’m not exaggerating. It was everything I crave in good Mexican food – a little heat, a rich sauce, a certain heartiness, and brightness from the salsa. It tasted like something I could have eaten for dinner in a hole-in-the-wall family restaurant, cooked by a little old abuela. I was particularly enamored with the beans, which could not have been simpler but were incredibly creamy and flavorful.

Book Club: Mexico: The Cookbook // Slow-Cooked Pork in Tequila, and a Giveaway!

Book Club: Mexico: The Cookbook // Slow-Cooked Pork in Tequila, and a Giveaway!

Book Club: Mexico: The Cookbook // Slow-Cooked Pork in Tequila, and a Giveaway!

Book Club: Mexico: The Cookbook // Slow-Cooked Pork in Tequila, and a Giveaway!
 

Book Club: Mexico: The Cookbook // Slow-Cooked Pork in Tequila, and a Giveaway!

Slow-Cooked Pork in Tequila

Serves 6.

Note: I’ve written the recipe as we’ve made it, which used significantly less chiles than the original, which called for 200g. I’ve also included some other notes and clarifications that aren’t in the original.

  • 50g mixed dried chiles (preferably a mix of cascabel, ancho, and jalapeno)
  • 3 TBS of canola oil, duck fat, or lard
  • 1 1/2 lb. pork butt, diced into 1 inch cubes
  • 1 1/2 lb. pork ribs, meat cut from bones and diced into 1 inch cubes
  • sea salt, to taste
  • 1/2 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1/2 tsp dried oregano
  • 3 cloves garlic, peeled
  • 1 large white onion, cut into chunks
  • 4 TBS tequila
  • white rice, to serve
  • prepared pinto beans, to serve
  • Michoacan Avocado Salsa, to serve (recipe below)
  1. Boil a pot of water and pour about 3 cups of boiling water over the chiles in a heatproof bowl. Let steep until chiles are soft and water is a deep red, about 15 minutes.
  2. Heat the oil or fat in a large saucepan. Add the pork butt and pork rib meat and cook over medium-high heat, stirring and turning frequently until evenly browned. Season with salt.
  3. Place the chiles, the chile soaking water, the cumin seeds, oregano, garlic, and onion into a blender and blend on high until smooth. Strain into a bowl, then add the sauce to the pork. Reduce heat to low, cover the pan, and cook, stirring occasionally, for 1 hour, or until the meat is tender and has absorbed most of the sauce. If the sauce begins to look dry at any point, add water.
  4. Add the tequila to the pan and continue to simmer, without the lid, for another 10 minutes. Remove from heat and serve with rice, beans, and avocado salsa.

Michoacan Avocado Salsa

Makes about 1 cup.

  • 3 tomatillos, papery husks and stems removed
  • 3 serrano chiles
  • 3 cloves garlic, peeled
  • 1 large avocado, peeled and pitted
  • 2 TBS finely chopped cilantro
  • sea salt, to taste
  1. Remove the seeds from 2 of the chiles and the stems from all 3. Put the tomatillos and chiles into a small saucepan and cover with water. Bring to a boil and boil for 5 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat and use a slotted spoon to transfer the tomatillos and the chiles to a food processor. Add the garlic to the food processor and process until combined. Add the avocado flesh to the food processor and process until smooth. Stir in the cilantro and season to taste with salt.

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