Roasted Tomatillo Pork Stew

Maybe it’s because I just spent this morning out in the rainy, foggy cold, or maybe it’s because I just had the most delicious beef stew dinner at a friend’s house on Sunday, but I don’t think any of you will take much convincing if I were to officially declare it stew season. When it’s cold and damp outside, I can think of few more comforting ways to spend an evening than curled up with a bowl of delicious, fork tender braised meat and a whole lot of vegetables.

So why not mix it up every now and then with a twist on your average beef stew? In this case, I made this stew after seeing country style pork ribs on wicked cheap sale at Amazon Fresh– seriously, I think I bought 2 lbs for $2.37 or something ridiculously close to that. Add to it the fact that the CSA had once again unloaded a pound plus of tomatillos on me as well as some green bell peppers and I got inspired to try making a Mexican style pork stew of sorts.

I can’t quite bring myself to call this a chili verde since I doubt that anything I did here is authentic, and besides– doesn’t that call for roasted poblano peppers or something? But this still was a delicious, warming, and filling meal, especially when served on a plate of rice. The broth was slightly thick and spicy, as the braising liquid for the pork consisted of chicken stock, jalapenos, and a whole bunch of aromatics in the form of sweet onions, celery, fresh thyme and oregano. Large chunks of bright green bell pepper and fresh carrots added a touch of flare to the lime green stew. Lastly, roasting the tomatillos then pureeing them with lots of cilantro, some lime juice and jalapeno thickened the sauce as well as gave a slightly smokey taste which livened the tender pork meat. I bet you could wrap this up with some Spanish rice in a tortilla for a hearty meal, another twist on the traditional bowl of stew that’s perfect now that winter is upon us.

  • 2 to 2.5 lbs country style pork ribs
  • 2 large stalks of celery chopped
  • 2 large carrots, chopped
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, peeled
  • 1 green bell pepper, chopped
  • 2 jalapenos, 1 minced, 1chopped (control the heat to your wussiness taste by removing the seeds.
  • 2 cups to 1 quart chicken stock
  • 1 lb tomatillos
  • olive oil
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 tbsp fresh oregano
  • 3 sprigs fresh thyme
  • juice of 1/2 a lime
  • 1/2 cup cilantro leaves

Preheat your oven to 400 degrees. Cut the tomatillos (cleaned of their husks and washed of any sticky grossness) in half and set on a foil lined baking sheet. Add the garlic cloves and the chopped jalapeno and mix these together with about 1 tbsp olive oil and a sprinkle of salt and pepper. Roast in the oven until softened and a little charred, about 20-30 minutes. Blitz in a blender with the lime juice and cilantro until pureed. Set aside.

In a large pot or Dutch oven, heat 1 tbsp of olive oil. Add the onions and cook until softened. Add the carrots, celery, minced jalapeno, and bell pepper and cook until slightly softened– another 5 minutes. Add the pork ribs, a little bit of salt and pepper as well as the thyme stalks and oregano. Cover with enough chicken stock to cover everything. Bring to a boil, then lower the heat to a simmer. Add in the tomatillo puree and let everything cook until the pork falls off the bone, about 1.5-2 hours.

Remove the ribs from the pot and shred the meat. Add the pork back in and stir around to combine. Serve on rice, in a big bowl with tortillas on the side or wrapped in a tortilla.

CSA Count: 5

Green pepper, tomatillos, cilantro, jalapeno, carrots


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