Friday, August 19, 2011

Chile Verde (and why I hate cilantro)

I LOATHE cilantro. I absolutely hate it. I think it is the most vile thing. It tastes like soap and kerosene. I have a very unpleasant reaction if I taste it. I automatically spit it out, gag, choke, avoid puking right there in the restaurant. (I should puke right there... they deserve for defiling their beautiful food with that repulsive little green leaf.
This is important to this post. Why you ask? Well friends, it is because I made Chile Verde for the very first time. An authentic Chile Verde will contain about 1/2 bunch of cilantro. But seeing how I have a natural aversion to that crap herb, this recipe will NOT contain it. If you like cilantro *gag* then you can feel free to add it in when you process the peppers and tomatillos in the food processor.  
You will find a small science/genetics lesson... about cilantro, which is quite interesting, if you desire to educate yourself on the particulars of it in the link at the end of this post. :)
Now, for the real reason we are here. Chile Verde. Amazingness. This is basically pork simmered in a green sauce made with tomatillos and peppers. So freaking good. 

Click this link to see a tomatillo in a husk ( which is how they would be found in the produce section of your grocery store.)

Chile Verde
3 pounds cubed pork stew meat ( bought a Boston Butt and chunked it)
3 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 large yellow onion
3 cloves garlic, minced
1-1/2 teaspoons sea salt
freshly ground pepper, to taste
1-1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
3 cups chicken broth
3-4 fresh poblano chile peppers, seeded 
2 fresh jalapeno peppers, seeded 
1 yellow bell peppers, seeded 
1-1/2 pounds fresh tomatillos, husks removed
small amount of flour for dredging

Cut all your peppers and tomatillos in half lengthwise, remove seeds of peppers. ( Do not touch the seeds in the jalapeno, or your skin will burn and burn and burn. Wear gloves or put plastic baggie over your hands.) Place peppers and tomatillos on a baking sheet and lightly drizzle with some oil and sprinkle with S&P. Carefully use your hands to make sure all the tomatillos and peppers are coated. Bake at 400 degrees for about 15- 20 minutes. This will intensify the flavor and allow you to skin the peppers and the tomatillos easily.

When the skin starts to brown, they are done. Let them cool enough to touch to peel. It is not necessary to peel the tomatillos. I peeled about half of them. They will be watery and mushy. It doesn't seem right, but just keep going.

Heat about 2 TBSP of oil in a large stock pot. Meanwhile, LIGHTLY dredge pork in flour and place into the hot oil. Brown pork. Remove pork from the pot, set aside. Reserve 2 TBSP of oil in the pot to cook onions and garlic. Cook until onions are translucent. (Stirring so the don't stick to the bottom of the pot.) Deglaze pan with 1/2 cup of chicken stock.

  When onions are done, throw the pork back into the pot with 2.5 cups of chicken broth and simmer for about 30 minutes. This is a good time to peel the peppers, but don't forget to stir the pork mixture occasionally.

After peppers are peeled, throw them and the tomatillos into the food processor or blender. ( This is where you would add the cilantro *boo hiss*)
 Throw the green mixture in with the pork and simmer another 25-30 minutes.
 Stir, stir, stir some more.
 The pictures do NOT do this justice.
 Serve over white rice. YUMMY!
 Serve with roasted corn. Oh My WORD... BEST.CORN.EVER
Just cut the corn off the cob, throw in a baking dish with a small amount of oil and S&P. Roast at 400 for about 18-20 minutes. Until corn begins to brown. Add butter and serve.

  • The corn was yummy right on top of the Chile Verde. So good. Easier than it sounds. Just try it. If you like Mexican food... you will LOVE this. You can add an extra jalapeno or two for extra heat. 

  • Okay... Cilantro... YUCK YUCK YUCK Check out this article about cilantro... it is about being genetically predisposed to like or hate cilantro. Interesting read.

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