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Mexican Pozole Rojo

PREP 30 mins, COOK 3 hrs

12 Servings


  • 4 ounces dried guajillo or ancho chiles, or a combination of both
  • Salt
  • 1 large (108 ounce) can white hominy, drained and rinsed
  • 3 pounds pork shoulder (preferably with bone), cut into 1 to 1 1/2 inch cubes
  • 8 cloves garlic, 4 cloves roughly chopped, and 4 whole cloves
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 2 tablespoons dry oregano (Mexican oregano if available)


  • 1/2 small cabbage, thinly sliced
  • 1 bunch cilantro, chopped
  • 1/2 white onion, chopped
  • 2 avocados, chopped
  • 4 limes, quartered
  • 1 bunch red radishes, sliced thin


  1. Fill a large 10 to 12 quart stockpot with 5 quarts of water. Set on heat to bring to a boil while you proceed with the next steps.
  2. Remove and discard the stems, seeds, and large veins from the chilis. Heat a cast iron pan on medium high and heat the chili pods for a couple minutes, until they begin to soften without burning.
  3. While the chilies are heating, bring a medium pot with 3 cups of water to a simmer and remove from heat. Once the chiles have softened, add the chiles to the pot of hot water and cover. Let the chiles steep in the hot water for 15 to 20 minutes.
  4. Heat a tablespoon or two of olive oil (enough to coat the bottom of the pan) in a large sauté pan on medium high heat. Pat the pork pieces dry with paper towels. Sprinkle them generously with salt.
  5. Working in batches, taking care not to crowd the pan or stir the meat much, brown the meat on all sides. At the end of browning the meat, add 4 cloves of roughly chopped garlic to the pan with the meat, let cook with the meat for about a minute.
  6. Add the pork and spices to the large pot of boiling water. Once the meat has browned, transfer it to the large stockpot of boiling water. Scrape up any browned bits at the bottom of the pan, and any garlic, and add those to the pot. Add the rinsed hominy, bay leaves, cumin, and oregano. Break up the oregano as it goes in. Add a tablespoon of salt. Bring to a simmer, reduce the heat and cook for 15 minutes.
  7. Prepare the red sauce by puréeing in a blender the chilies, 2 1/2 cups or so of their soaking liquid, a teaspoon of salt, and 4 cloves of garlic. (start with 1 cup of liquid, then add rest to prevent pressure from building)
  8. Strain the red sauce through a sieve, discarding the tough bits of the sauce. Add the red chili sauce to the pot with the pork and hominy. Add another couple teaspoons of salt. Return to a simmer, lower the heat to just high enough to maintain a simmer, partially covered.
  9. Cook for 2 to 3 hours until the pork is completely tender. Skin off fat and taste for additional salt.
  10. Add your garnishes and serve

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