Pozole Rojo de Puerco
Red Pork Pozole soup is my favorite Mexican dish hands down. It’s simple, earthy, rich and satisfying. Pozole is pork or chicken – this recipe calls for pork – and hominy in a mildly spicy guajillo and ancho chile broth garnished with shredded cabbage or lettuce, diced onion, sliced radish, Mexican oregano and some arból chile for a little extra heat with a squirt of lime juice to bring it all together. The perfect dish.
Let Us Teach You How to Make Great Pozole
Is authentic pozole difficult to make? No, it isn’t, but it is laborious. It’s a dish you make when you are having friends and family over to share good food and good times. It’s well worth the effort! If you make it once, you will be asked to make it every time you get together. You will see.
The Cooking Process
If you have never made pozole before it will help to visualize the process. Here’s a list of the main steps. The photos will walk you through the process.
Start with these steps:
These are done in separate pots at the same time.
- Prepare the chile base
- Cook the pork
- Cook the hominy
Then complete these steps:
- Combine the ingredients in 1 pot and simmer
- Prepare the garnishes
Then the best part:
- Serving and eating
Gather Your Ingredients
The main ingredients to make pozole are pork, hominy (maíz pozolero), ancho chiles, guajillo chiles, onion, garlic, and Mexican oregano and optional chiles de arból.
Cooking the Pork & Broth
Place the pork, a head of garlic a few bay leaves and half an onion in a large pot and just cover with water (about 6 cups). Bring the water to a boil and then reduce the heat to a simmer. Cook for 45 minutes. The pork is done when you can easily pull it apart with your fingers. If the pork doesn’t pull apart easily after 45 minutes, cook for another 15 minutes.
When the pork is cooked remove it from the cooking liquid and set aside. Strain the broth into a bowl and set aside.
When the pork is cool to the touch, shred it with your fingers into 1″ long pieces.
Preparing the Chile Base
Remove the stems, seeds, and veins from the chiles and discard.
Place the chiles, 3 cloves of garlic, and 1/2 white onion in a pot and just cover with water (about 3 cups).
Bring to a boil and then turn off the heat. Allow the chiles to rest for 15 minutes to reconstitute them. Notice how the chiles have expanded and become pliable from absorbing the water.
Add the chiles, onion, garlic oregano, and soaking liquid to your blender. Blend for 1 minute until smooth. Do this in 2 batches.
Strain the blended chile base.
Press the pulp firmly with the back of the spoon to extract as much flavor as possible. Discard the chile pulp that remains.
Heat 3 tablespoons of oil over medium-high heat and pour in the chile base. This is called “seasoning.” It is an important step that adds a lot of flavor to your pozole.
Simmer for 30 minutes until the base has thickened and darkened in color. Looking good, isn’t it?
Cooking the Hominy
Drain the canned hominy and rinse. Put the rinsed hominy in a large pot and cover with 2″ of water. Simmer while you are preparing the pork and chile base.
Assembling the Pozole
Now it is time to bring all of the ingredients together. Add the chile base to the hominy.
Then add the pork broth and shredded pork. Add 3 teaspoons of sea salt. Bring to a boil then reduce the heat and simmer for 30 minutes. Add more salt as necessary.
When the pozole is ready to serve it will have taken on a beautiful deep red color.
Preparing the Garnishes
While your pozole is simmering you will need to get all of the garnishes ready. The traditional garnishes are: shredded cabbage or lettuce, diced onion, slices of radish, oregano, limes and finely chopped dried chiles or chile powder.
This Is How I Prepare My Perfect Bowl
Everyone has a unique way of personalizing their pozole. This is how I prepare mine. You need to start with the garnishes: shredded cabbage or lettuce, chopped onion, sliced radish, oregano and chopped spicy arból chile. Then you add your preferred garnishes in your preferred quantity.
Let’s begin. I start with a naked bowl of pozole.
And lastly, add chile de arból for some heat with a squirt of lime to tie all the flavors together.
Here It Is, My Perfect Bowl
What do you think!
Hungry yet? Provecho!
Note: “Posole” or “pazole” are alternative spellings used to describe this dish.
Red Pork Pozole Recipe
- 3 pounds boneless pork leg
- 2 25 oz. cans of hominy drained and rinsed
- 5 ancho chiles
- 5 guajillo chiles
- 1/2 white onion
- 3 arból chiles optional, use if you want a spicier broth
- 3 cloves of garlic + 1 head of garlic
- 1 tbsp Mexican oregano
- 3 bay leaves
- 3 tsp sea salt + as needed
- 1/2 head of cabbage shredded
- 1 large white onion diced
- 6 radishes sliced into half moons
- 6 limes quartered
- 4 tbsp Mexican oregano
- 6 arból chiles finely chopped
- Salt as needed
- The first steps are done in separate pots at the same time.
Pork and Pork Broth
- Place the pork, head of garlic a few bay leaves and half an onion in a large pot and just cover with water (about 6 cups).
- Bring the water to a boil and then reduce the heat to a simmer. Cook for 45 minutes. The pork is done when you can easily pull it apart with your fingers. If the pork doesn't pull apart easily after 45 minutes, cook for another 15 minutes.
- Shred the pork with your fingers into 1" long pieces.
- Remove the stems, seeds and veins from the chiles and discard.
- Place the chiles, clove of garlic, and 1/2 white onion in a pot and just cover with water (about 3 cups).
- Add the chiles, onion, garlic oregano, and soaking liquid to your blender. Blend for 1 minute until smooth.
- Strain the blended chile base. Discard the chile pulp that remains.
- In a pot, heat 3 tablespoons of oil over medium-high heat and pour in the chile base. Reduce the heat to a simmer.
- Cook for 30 minutes until the base has thickened and darkened in color.
- Drain the canned hominy and rinse.
- Put the rinsed hominy in a large pot and cover with 2" of water.
- Simmer while you are preparing the pork and chile base.
Assembling Your Pozole
- Now it is time to bring all of the ingredients together.
- Pour the prepared chile base into the hominy.
- Then add the pork broth and shredded pork.
- Add 2 teaspoons of sea salt.
- Bring to a boil then reduce the heat and simmer for 30 minutes.
- Adjust the salt as necessary.
Prepare the Garnishes
- Shred the cabbage.
- Dice the onion.
- Slice the radish into half-moons.
- Quarter the limes.
- Finely chop the arból chile.
- Place each garnish into individual serving bowls.
- Ladle the pozole into individual bowls to serve.
- Each person garnishes their pozole as desired.
- The final step is to enjoy!