Pozole Part Dos
A few days ago, I wrote about an amazing Stew/Soup; known as Pozole!!As you may remember, the main focus of the article was utilizing leftover Pork Loin, but what do you u have leftover Pozole? That’s easy….turn it into a Sauce!! Now, you may ask, “What am I going to use this sauce on?” The answer is ANYTHING!!!
Pozole as a sauce would work great as a sauce on any number of things. It can be used as a sauce over any kind of Enchiladas, Burritos, or as I used it…CHIMICHANGAS!! What is a Chimichanga? Well, Chimichangas or chimmy chongas are a fat, juicy, deep-fried burrito that is often a favorite of Tex-Mex cuisine. Chimichanga is also popular in the Mexican states of Sinaloa and Sonora. So, what is the origin of the Chimichanga? There are many answers to that question, and no one really knows how the Chimichanga came to be. However, this one is my favorites!!
The founder of the Tuscan, Arizona, restaurant “El Charro”, Monica Flin, accidentally dropped a pastry into the deep-fryer in 1922. She immediately began to utter a Spanish curse-word (chingada), but quickly tried to recover by exclaiming chimichanga, a Spanish version of thingamajig! Being a frequent user of the word thingie and thingamajig, you can understand why I would gravitate to this story.
Any who, Chimichangas was one of my favorite dishes when I was a kid and my family would often frequent the restaurant Western Sizzler back home. Did I just date myself? Needless to say, I have grown a bit tiresome of Tex-Mex food and often crave authentic, I can’t pronounce it, but it’s soooo good Mexican Food; Chimichanga still remains a favorite.
Since Chimichangas lends itself to any combination of fillings, topping, and sauces, you can pretty much make it out of virtual anything. Therefore, I had some, inject my favorite words; “leftover” taco meat, Spanish rice, refried beans, and a package of 10” flour tortillas, why not Chimichangas. You can use whatever items you have on hand, but the following recipe for the Chimichangas I prepared last night, will simply act as a “base” recipe. Then, I show you were the “leftover” Pozole, takes its place in this tasty masterpiece!
*In the recipe that is to follow, instead of frying the Chimichanga; I baked them!! The “Healthier Option!!*
Pozole Part Dos
Mary’s Leftover Chimichanga w/Pozole Sauce
1 lb 14 oz. Leftover Beef Taco Meat (chicken, pork, whatever you have leftover) Reheated
3 cups Refried Beans (same thing, black beans, charro, etc…) reheated
1 qt 7oz Cooked Rice (I used Spanish Rice made with Brown Rice) Reheated
12 ea 10” Tortillas (Warm them up a bit in the microwave to make them pliable)
1 lb. 2 oz Tomatoes, diced
12 oz Shredded Monterey Jack Cheese
3 oz Green Onions, sliced
1 qt leftover Pozole
2tbls. Corn Starch
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. *If you’re deep-frying preheat your fryer to 350.
1. Combine the slurry ingredients until well blended. Set aside.
2. Layer the following across the center of the tortilla:
4 tbls refried beans
4.5 tbls meat
4.5 tbls rice
3 tbls tomato
2 tbls cheese
½ tbls green onion
1. Brush the top third of the tortilla with slurry (this will help to seal the tortilla).
2. Fold the lower third of tortilla over the filling and pull the filling into the space to create a tight roll.
3. Fold the right and left sides of the tortilla about 2 ½” inches on each side.
4. Roll the chimichanga closed. Also secure with a toothpick if you’re going to fry them.
5. Repeat the process until all the Chimichangas are made.
6. Place on a baking sheet and bake for 45 minutes, until heated through and golden brown.
7. While the Chimichangas are baking; take your leftover Pozole and heat it up on the stove.
8. Once it is heated, pour the Pozole in a blender, and blend until smooth. (Make sure that you leave the lid slightly opened to prevent the pressure from the hot Pozole from blowing the top off and scalding you).
Serve the Chimichanga with about 2 1/5 ounces of the Pozole Sauce ladled on top!
Pork Loin to Pozole!
Often times, when we think Pork, our minds automatically drift to Pork Chops or Hams. However, I must admit, one of my most favorite cuts is the Loin.
This is where we get the leanest and most tender pork cuts. Since they’re lean, these cuts tend to dry out if overcooked. Pork is safe to eat if it’s cooked to an interior temperature of 160 degrees. There are three main parts of the loin: the blade end, which is closest to the shoulder and tends to be fatty; the sirloin end, which is closest to the rump and tends to be bony; and the center portion in the middle, which is lean, tender, and expensive. Pork chops, tenderloin and loin roasts and Canadian bacon.
Tonight I cooked a most succulent, yet simple Cumin-Dusted Pork Tenderloin for my family. Salt, Coarse Ground Black Pepper, and Cumin lovingly messaged on to a trimmed Pork Loin; roasted to perfection. Even with a crew of 6 very healthy eaters, I still had leftovers. If your family is anything like mine (we eat leftovers, when mom makes us) then you have to find a very clever way to redesign the meal. Thus, Pozole!
Pozole is a popular dish in Mexico consisting of broth, vegetables, spices, shredded meat, and an array of toppings. The word Pozole word of Nahuatl origin, potzolli means froth. The grains of a special corn called Cacahuazintl, is pre-cooked in a water solution with Calcium oxide for a couple of hours, making the corn grains lose their outer layer so that they can “open” when boiled, giving them the appearance of froth. Now, for us simple folks it’s HOMINY!!
Pozole is prepared in a variety of ways depending on the region preparing it. In the State of Guerrero, Pozole is made with Green Tomatoes, Green Pipian Pozole. Folk hailing from Michoacán add Pork Rinds, Colima residents top Pozole with White Cheese and coastal area commonly add sardines! The most common recipe used comes from Jalisco, using Pork and dried Poblano Peppers. Pozole is so versatile, that it can even be made vegetarian or vegan!! When preparing the Jalisco version of Pozole, also known as Red Pozole, a basic Blanco (white) Pozole is prepared using Pork leg, pork neck bones, and ancho chilies are added giving the Pozole it’s red color. Now, I don’t know about you, but I work a 10 hour day during the day in corporate America, and then cater to some of you wonderful people afterwards. Therefore, I do not have all day to “stew down” a whole pork leg! With this recipe, we are going to use the leftover pork loin from the night before. Clean out the fridge for some accompaniments so that everyone can dress their “perfect” bowl of Pozole. In about an hour you can have a hearty and delectable bowl of the wonderful stew that is guaranteed to be the highlight of everyone’s day.
Mary’s Leftover Pozole
Serves 8-10/ 8oz bowls
1lb. Leftover Pork Loin (or any pork that you have leftover from a previous dish) diced into ½” pieces or strips if the pork loin leftovers are already sliced.
1 ½ tbls. Vegetable oil
1 onion, diced
2 stalks of celery, diced
2 carrots, diced
1tbls. Garlic, minced
1small can of green chilies
2tbls. Chili Powder
1tbls. Mexican Oregano (or whatever Oregano you have)
1 large can. of Diced Tomatoes
1qt. Chicken Broth
2cns. Hominy(I like using 1 can of white and 1 can of yellow for color contrast)
10ea. Corn Tortillas (Cut into strips) reserve 1 ½ cups of strips for frying as crunchy tortilla strips for you stew!
1tbls. Lime Juice
1. Heat a sturdy stockpot over medium heat. Add the oil and sauté the onions, celery, and carrots until fragrant, about 3 to 4 minutes.
2. Add the garlic and spices, sautéing for another minute.
3. Then add the leftover pork, tomatoes, hominy and chicken broth and bring the mixture to a boil. Once the stew starts to boil add the tortillas strips and lime juice.
4. Reduce the heat and allow the stew to simmer on low for about 30 minutes. Making sure to stir often to breakdown the tortillas and keep them from sticking to the pot.
Serve with Fresh Chopped Cilantro, Shredded Cabbage, Jalapenos, Diced Avocado, Crispy Tortilla Strips, Shredded Cheese, Sliced Radishes, Salsa, Sour Cream, or whatever you have on hand. The possibilities are endless!!!