The days of soaking hominy kernels – cacahuazintle – in calcified water and peeling each one individually are fading fast, thanks to the pre-cleaned hominy that comes in packages in the refrigerated food section of even small neighborhood supermarkets. If you don’t live near a market that sells Mexican maiz para pozole, you can substitute canned hominy. There are several regional and family variations of pozole, some using both pork and chicken. This recipe, which uses pork meat and chicken stock, is my favorite. It can be made as thick as desired, and in fact is sometimes classified as a stew, but in any case this dish constitutes a meal in itself.
- 2 tablespoons corn oil
- 1/2 cup chopped onion
- 1/2 head garlic, cloves peeled and chopped
- 2 pounds pork stew meat, cut into cubes
- homemade chicken stock
- 4 ancho chiles, seeded and deveined, soaked in hot water until soft
- 4 guajillo chiles, seeded and deveined, soaked in hot water until soft
- 4 cascabel chiles, seeded and deveined, soaked in hot water until soft
- 1 teaspon dried marjoram
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1 package refrigerated maiz para pozole or 2 32-ounce cans hominy
- Lime wedges
- Chopped onion
- Shredded lettuce
- Dried oregano
In a large stockpot, heat the oil, add the onion and garlic, and sautee until the onion is transparent. Add the meat and the chicken stock to cover. The amount of stock used will depend on how thick a pozole is desired; more may be added with the hominy later on. Bring to a boil, cover, reduce heat and cook until the pork is tender.
Meanwhile, puree the softened chiles with just enough broth to allow movement of the blender blades.
Add the chile puree, marjoram, thyme and hominy and continue cooking until the hominy is tender. This will require less time if canned hominy is used.
Serve the hot pozole in deep bowls, with separate bowls of garnish ingredients on the table so that diners can add their own.