Next up from the chili experiments – Chili Verde.
This recipe came from a friend in San Diego when I advertised I was looking for a chili without beans. I laughed to myself when she said ‘Chili Verde’, since the only other reference to Chili Verde I’ve heard was the mythical setting for Divine’s uber campy drag-Western, Lust In The Dust.
I don’t know the ethnic origins of this chili but whenever tomatillos are involved I say its from Mexico. Luckily, here in Texas, influence from Mexico is strong and there are plenty of tomatillo based salsas and sauces available in every grocery. I chose a locally-produced tomatillo salsa under the brand name ‘Arriba’ for this recipe. After the fact, I noticed the Arriba salsa had a kick, I should have noticed beforehand jalapenos were the second ingredient on the list.
- 2 lb Pork Shoulder, cubed 1″
- 16 oz Tomatillo Salsa
- 4 Poblano Chilies, roasted, sliced
- 4 C Chicken Stock
- 1 C Cilantro, hand torn
- 1 Purple Onion, diced
- 4 T Olive oil, divided
- 6 Cloves Garlic, diced
- 1 T Cumin Seeds
- 1 T Flour
- 1 t Salt, divided
- 1 t Ground Black Pepper, divided
In large pan over high heat, add half the oil. Add pork cubes and start browning. A few minutes in, add the cumin seeds and half of the salt and pepper. When the pork is browned, 7-10 minutes, remove to a plate.
In the same pan, reduce heat to medium, add the remaining oil. Saute the onion until they start to caramelize, 5-7 minutes. Add garlic and stir for a minute. Add flour and stir constantly for a few minutes. Add poblanos and stir constantly for a minute. Add stock, tomatillo sauce and the remaining salt and pepper. Stir the lot until the flour is incorporated. Reduce heat to low and cook for 10 minutes. Add pork, cover and cook for 30-40 minutes. Uncover, add cilantro and continue to cook for 10 minutes or until its the consistency you want.
You’re good to go!
There’s nothing to modify, this is outstanding. The flavours from the tomatillo salsa are dominant, so its important to pick one you like.
For all-y’all Texans, this will not be the consistency of Texas chili, which is thick enough to do masonry work; it will be more like a slightly thickened soup.
I tried the thickened yogurt version of sour cream here, while visually appealing, the flavours did not play well with others. Cubed avocado, on the other hand, did pair nicely with the tomatillo and cilantro in the mix.
The taste testers liked a little bit of Pepper Jack cheese over the top and tortilla chips/lime wedges on the side.
Oddly enough, a Belgian Beer, Chimay, was the beverage voted most ‘pairable’