Welcome to my world!

I've developed a passion for cooking since childhood, but in the past six years, that passion has grown into a geeky obsession. I love cooking, baking, and most importantly, sharing the love of food with family and friends. I invite you along on my journey of food discovery and passion.

Saturday, March 30, 2013

A 3-Hour Pork Stew in Only 35 Minutes!

While I probably try more recipes from magazines than cookbooks these days, I'm making a conscious effort to select at least one recipe a week (or more) from one of the many cookbooks I own.  Maybe it's guilt or the thought that I shouldn't have a cookbook I don't use, but it's something I'm committed to.  One cookbook I received as a gift is a compilation of recipes called "Best of the Best" by Food and Wine.  Essentially, they release a cookbook that pulls the "best" recipes from the "best" cookbooks of that year.  It's actually a great concept since I don't want to necessarily own all of those cookbooks, but I might like a few of the recipes from each.

In the cookbook, I found a pork posole recipe that looked mouth-watering good.  Pork shoulder, hominy, and a homemade tomatillo sauce that's added at the end for a flavorful stew.  Problem is, I had to cook this on a weeknight with limited time AND I wanted to make it a bit healthier.  How to accomplish?  Take a lighter cut of pork, sub frozen corn for hominy, punch up the corn flavor with a secret ingredient (hint: you probably have this snack food in your pantry), and use pre-made tomatillo salsa.

I browned up a pound of pork tenderloin that is cut into small cubes, added in some diced onion, poblano, and a little jalapeño for heat (you can omit the last item to make it more kid-friendly), and cooked until soft.  Then, I added 1 quart of chicken broth 1/2 package of frozen corn, and one jar of mild tomatillo salsa.  Brought to a boil, simmered 10 minutes and served.  While that was cooking, I microwaved a package of the 90-second rice to mix in (though you could cook rice in the soup or separately).

Pork, rice, sour cream, and cilantro - yum!

But the true test, how did it taste?  Well, my pickiest critic (my sweetie) ate two bowls.  I'd say that it passed the test!  Serve this with your choice of toppings - shredded cheese, crushed tortilla chips, sour cream, lime wedges, and fresh cilantro are all options.  Happy eating!

Quick Pork and Tomatillo Stew

1 Tbsp canola oil
1 medium onion, chopped
1 poblano pepper, seeded and chopped
1 jalapeño, seeded and ribs removed, chopped
1 lb pork tenderloin, cut into small cubes
1 jar green tomatillo salsa (mild)
1 quart chicken broth
1/2 package frozen corn
1 cup tortilla chips, crushed.
1 cup rice, prepared according to package directions
Chopped cilantro and sour cream, for garnish

In kettle, heat canola oil over medium heat until shimmering.  Add onion, poblano, and jalapeño (if using).  Cook until onion is translucent.  Add in pork tenderloin pieces and sauté until lightly browned. Season with salt and pepper.  Add in jar of salsa, chicken broth, corn, and tortilla chips.  Bring to a boil and reduce to a summer.  Simmer 15 minutes or until pork is cooked through.  Check for seasoning.  To serve, divide rice into 4 bowls, ladle in soup and garnish with cilantro, more crushed tortilla chips, and sour cream, if desired.

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