Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Pork and Tomatillo Posole

Dave spent the day winterizing the house.  One of the things he does every year is shrink wrap the windows.  You know, covers the windows with that plastic stuff and then uses a hair dryer to shrink it and get rid of any wrinkles.  It does help with the drafts, and we do live in an old drafty house, but if I think about it too much it makes me a little claustrophobic.  I know I'll be thankful for those extra couple of degrees it keeps the house.

This is the time of year I really start to cook and bake.  I lean toward comfort foods that are warm and filling.  I am always looking for ways to make my favorites a little healthier, but I'm not often successful.  This warm, homey soup is the perfect combination of comfort and healthy choices.

Posole is comfort food at it's finest.  A warm broth based soup filled with pork, warm spices, hominy, onions, and topped with crunchy radishes and creamy avocado.   It is perfect for those cold snowy days when the fire is going and your toes are still a little cold, even with the shrink-wrapped windows.

Pork and Tomatillo Posole
adapted from Ellie Kreiger, Comfort Food Fix

12 oz. fresh tomatillos, papery skins removed, rinsed well an dried
1 jalapeno pepper, halved and seeded
2 Tbsp. olive oil
1 lb. pork tenderloin, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
1 medium onion, halved and thinly sliced
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp. dried oregano
1 tsp. ground cumin
1/2 tsp. ground coriander
1 bay leaf
4 cups low-sodium chicken broth
2 (15 oz) can white hominy, drained and rinsed
1 (14.5 oz) can fire-roasted tomatoes
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. pepper
4 radishes
1 small ripe avocado
1/4 head small cabbage, shredded
1/4 c. fresh cilantro leaves

Preheat the broiler.  Place the tomatillos and jalapeno on a baking sheet and broil, 5-6 inches from the flame, until the tomatillos collapse and the jalapeno is charred, about 10 minutes.  Allow to cool slightly, then transfer to a blender or food processor and blend or process until smooth.

Heat 1 Tbsp. oil in a soup pot over medium-high heat.  Add the pork and cook until browned but still slightly pink in the center, about 5 minutes.  Transfer the pork, with its juices to a plate.

Heat the remaining 1 Tbsp. oil over medium-high heat.  Add the onion and cook, stirring, until softened, about 6 minutes.  Add the garlic, oregano, cumin, coriander, and bay leaf and cook, stirring, until the spices become fragrant, about 1 minute.  Return the pork with its juices to the pot and stir to combine.  Add the pureed tomatillos, chicken broth, hominy, tomatoes, salt and pepper and bring to boil.  Reduce the heat to medium low and simmer, skimming off any initial foam, for 15 minutes.  Add shredded cabbage and simmer 5 minutes more  Remove the bay leaf.  Season with salt.  Serve garnished with radishes, avocado, and cilantro.
Serves 4

October 17, 2012     Daylight 9 hours, 27 minutes, 6 seconds     Temp. 23ºF

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