Sun, Aug 10 • 0

Posole is a thick soup that’s made with pork, hominy, garlic, onion, chili peppers, cilantro, and broth, from the Pacific coast of Mexico.

My brother made this two weeks ago over a camp fire. He used pinto beans, but suggested I try making it with hominy instead. I’m not sure how authentic my version is, since I’m pretty much not allowed to cook anything too spicy if I expect my wife to eat it. Also, both of us hate the taste of cilantro, which is a dominant flavor in most of the recipes I’ve come across. I brined my pork before starting, but if you’re strapped for time, just season your pork with salt and pepper before starting. As with all dishes like this, it’s always better the second night. Serves 6-8 hungry diners or 12 normal ones. (Weight Watchers, 1 serving : 10 points.)

2-3 lbs. pork shoulder, trimmed of excess visible fat
2 T oil
½ bottle beer
4-6 cups water
1 large onion, diced
1 large green pepper, diced
2 stalks celery, diced
4 strips bacon, diced
2 cloves garlic
½ T ground cumin
1 t chili powder
2 t smoked paprika
pinch cayenne pepper
3 T flour
1 can diced tomato
2 cans hominy, drained

Heat up a dutch oven with oil, and brown the pork shoulder on all sides — about 5 minutes a side. Remove the pork, discard the grease, and deglaze the pot with the beer. Return the pork to the pot, and cover with the water. Bring to a boil, and simmer for 45 minutes, skimming off any foam that forms. Remove the pork to cool, and reserve the broth, skimming off excess fat.

Without the broth, in the same pan, brown the bacon until the bacon fat is rendered. Remove the bacon bits with a slotted spoon, and save with the pork. Augment with olive oil if necessary, and cook the chopped vegetables until transluscent. Add the spices, and the flour, and stir until moistened. Add the tomato with the juice, plus 4 cups of the reserved broth. Cut the pork shoulder into 1 inch cubes, removing any bones and large chunks of fat, and add back into the pot along with the bacon. Stir in the 2 cans of hominy, and simmer for 20 to 30 minutes.

If you want to make this spicier, you can add some diced jalepeno when you add the onions to the pan.

Salmon Chowder

Fri, Jan 18 • 0

I started making this a couple years ago, and it’s become one of my wintertime staples. It takes only about an hour to make, start to finish, and it’s delicious. You can replace the onion with leeks, and it’s even better. I passed it on to a vegetarian friend of mine, and we decided that it tastes awesome even if you don’t include the salmon! Serve with a crusty dark pumpernickel and butter. Serves 6 as main course, 10 as a starter.


1 large onion, diced
1 or 2 large fennel bulbs, sliced, core and stems removed, but fronds saved and chopped
2 stalks celery, chopped
2 T butter or olive oil
1 t dried thyme
2 cloves garlic, chopped
3 T flour
32 oz. vegetable stock
32 oz chicken stock (or more vegetable stock)
8 oz tomato juice
1-2 lbs red bliss potatoes, diced
pepper to taste
1-2 lbs salmon filet, skinned and cut into 1″ cubes
½ pint cream (optional)
fresh chopped tarragon

Sweat the onion, fennel, fronds, and celery in a large dutch oven for a couple of minutes, salting to draw out the water from the vegetables, then add the thyme and garlic and cook until the garlic is fragrant. Stir in the flour until it is absorbed. Add the stock, the tomato juice, and the potatoes, heat up to boiling, and then lower heat to a simmer and cook until the potatoes are done (when you can easily pierce one with the tip of your knife); about 15 minutes. Add the salmon, and cook for 5 minutes in the hot soup. Take off the heat and stir in the cream. Serve with the tarragon on top.

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