Tuesday, May 10, 2005

Pork Tamale Filling

(Putting it all together)

I’ve written pretty extensively about beef tamales earlier. They take a good deal of time to make, but I believe that if you use a great filling that they are well worth the effort.

If you’ve been following along and cooking with my recent posts, by now you should have one or more pounds of pre-cooked pork tenderloin, cooled on a plate, along with a pot of really tasty stock with vegetables cooling in the fridge.

Take your stock out of the fridge and spoon the congealed grease off of the top. Now dip out a couple of cups of the liquid, along with a cup of the carrots, onions, etc. and process the mixture in your blender or food processor. You want the vegetables in little bitty teeny tiny chunks.

Place the pork tenderloin on the cutting board and slice it across the grain into ½” pieces. If you did things right it should crumble into shreds while you’re doing this step. If not, tear the slices up into small pieces with your fingers.

Next comes the final seasoning—Menudo. I think that Menudo is Mexican for “every darn savory spice in your pantry” or something like that because that’s what’s in it. I found this recipe on the internet. I didn’t have all of the spices and I didn’t want SEVEN CUPS of Menudo seasoning, so here’s what I made up:

2-1/2 tbsp ground cumin
1-1/2 tbsp chili powder
1 tbsp granulated garlic
1 tbsp onion powder
½ tsp powdered mustard
½ tsp oregano
½ tsp cinnamon
½ tsp nutmeg
1 tsp salt

This should be more than enough seasoning for the pork and the chicken. I added three table spoons worth to my one pound of shreded pork.

Heat a couple of tablespoons of good extra virgin olive oil in a large deep skillet over medium low heat on the stove top.

Add your pork/spice mixture and sauté briefly, then add your processed stock and one can of chicken stock. You can also dice up some canned Chipolte peppers in Adobo sauce and add them to the mix at this point if you want. Careful with the Chipolte’s—they’re hot…

Stir everything up and let it simmer until the mixture is the consistency of “sloppy joes.” You want it wet, but not “dripping wet.”

When the mixture has reduced, you can either let it cool and place it in the fridge overnight, freeze it, or jump back to the beef tamale recipe and substitute “pork” every where you see “beef”.

Enjoy Y’all

The Redneck Gourmet

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