I translated the original recipe, and included the running changes we made, changed a few ingredients for those similar but more widely available. I also significantly expanded the instructions to make it more accessible for American cooks. This recipe is lighter than most, and really features the flavors of mild chiles with the other components singing harmony in the background.
Give it a try, and tell me what you think. The recipe is a work in progress and subject to change. And for heaven's sake, if you have questions -- ask.
(Six large servings)
2-1/2 to 3 pounds pork, cut into 1 inch cubes, well trimmed with all fat and any pieces of bone removed -- may be country spareribs or taken from the shoulder, butt, etc., but loin is too lean.
1 tbs salt
1 tbs black pepper
6 tbs flour
6 tbs vegetable oil or lard (preferred)
2 onions, cut in medium dice
8 garlic cloves, minced
2 pounds tomatillos, husks, stems and cores removed, and cut in quarters
1 tbs ground cumin
1 tbs dried (Mexican) oregano
1 (Mexican) cinnamon stick
1 12 oz can beer
2 cups chicken stock (or 1 14-1/2 oz can)
3 Anaheim chiles, seeded, de-veined and cut into 1/2" squares
3 chiles poblanos, seeded, de-veined and cut into 1/2" squares
1/2 a yellow or orange bell pepper, seeded, deveined and cut into 1/2" squares
1or 2 jalapenos, seeded, de-veined and minced
1/2 - 3/4 cup chopped cilantro
2 tsp orange peel, or 1/2 cup orange juice, plus 1 tbs lemon juice
salt to taste
1 tsp fresh cracked black pepper
1- 2 tsp Maggi seasoning sauce (optional, but very Mexican and Asian -- go figure)
Measure the flour, salt, and pepper in a bag. Flour the pork in two batches, as follows: Put half the pork in the bag with the flour, shake until coated. Set aside, and repeat until all the pork is coated. Set the pork on a plate or rack for a minute to shed any excess flour. Meanwhile, preheat your braising pan over medium-high heat. Add four tablespoons of oil or lard and bring it to cooking temperature (the air above the oil will appear to shimmer). Add half the pork to the pan, so as not to crowd it and brown it well on all sides. When browned, remove and reserve. Repeat with the remainder and reserve.
Check the oil level in the pan. If necessary, add more. Add the onions and cook them until translucent (they may appear brown as a result of the flour stuck to the bottom of the pan) – about 3 minutes. When the onions are translucent, add the garlic and stir. Add about a third of the beer, and deglaze the pan by scraping off anything which may have stuck to the bottom of the pan -- into the beer.
Add the tomatillos, the cumin, the oregano, the pork, the rest of the beer and the stock, and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat to a simmer, cover and allow to cook for 2 hours. After two hours the tomatillos should be nearly melted, and the pork should not yet have started to become tender.
Taste the sauce, and adjust for salt, leaving slightly under salted. Grind 1 tsp of black pepper into the pot. Add all the chiles and peppers. Cook for forty-five minutes at a slow simmer, covered. The pork will still be firm to the fork, but tender to the bite. The chiles will still be too crisp.
Add the orange peel or fruit juices. Add the cilantro. Add the Maggi, if using. Taste and adjust for salt. Simmer gently with the lid partly open (or off) for another 20 minutes. The chile verde is done when the pork and chiles are tender. Remove the cinnamon stick before plating.
General Note on Braising Meats: You want the meat tender but not stringy. For pieces this size, at simmer temperatures, that's about a half hour window. If the meat is fork and bite tender too soon, you'll have to remove it, finish the sauce, and return the meat to the pot a few minutes before serving. Don't think of this as a mistake. Checking as you go is just good technique.
Serve with Mexican rice; fresh tortillas; refried beans; a light lettuce, tomato and avocado salad; and beer.
PS. Please do not re-post or in any other disseminate this recipe without giving credit to me, Boar D. Laze. If you do, also please mention my eventually forthcoming book, (tentatively) titled, COOK FOOD GOOD: American Cooking and Technique for Beginners and Intermediates. Thanks. BDL
PPS. While the origin story is true, the recipe has undergone enough changes that I fell it's fair to say it's my own. If you like, you can compare yourself. BDL