When the weather is drizzly cold, it’s time to make Pozole Rojo. This is one of my favorite soups. But really, pozole isn’t so much a soup, but a rich broth flavored with savoury pork, chicken, fresh oregano and accented with tender hominy. Pozole Rojo is more of a ritual, the way tamales or carne asada is a tradition. Of all the different types of pozoles, red pozole (or pozole rojo) has to be my favorite because of the fragrant red chile puree that is added.
Rojo means “Red”
For those that don’t cook that often, you may balk at the idea of adding pigs feet or chicken necks to your Pozole Rojo. Even seasoned kitchen veterans may not like the idea. But the broth of pozole is essential to the experience. There isn’t a boxed broth on the market that can compare to homemade pozole broth. The richest bone broths come from the boniest cuts of meat, such as the feet or necks. The result is a rich velvety broth that warms you to the core. A bowl of warm pozole keeps you warm as you head out into the world.
Also, all pozole recipes are meant to feed a crowd so there isn’t a small recipe I can offer you. But you can easily freeze the broth that you don’t use immediately. Simply allow the pozole to cool completely and place in freezer containers.
Pozole Rojo is a Family Fave
Pozole is a favorite dish in the Mexican states of Sinaloa, Jalisco and Guerrero, but is quite popular throughout the Republic. In fact, the recipe is considered by many as part of Mexico’s core culinary heritage.
Pozole is served mainly at weddings, parties, and in early morning attempts to ward off hangovers. The garnishes serve not only to flavor your soup, but function as an opportunity to socialize with the people at the table around you. Passing around the salsa or bowl of sliced radishes while customizing your bowl of red pozole turns strangers into acquaintances, acquaintances into friends, and friends into family.Print
- Prep Time: 10 minutes
- Cook Time: 2 hours 45 min
- Total Time: 2 hours 55 minutes
- Yield: 12 servings 1x
1 lb. chicken breasts, with ribs
1 lb. chicken necks or backs
1 lb. pork with bones (pork chops work well)
1 lb. split pigs feet
1 rib celery
1 onion, peeled
2 carrots, peeled and chopped
1 head garlic
½ tsp whole black pepper
2 sprigs fresh thyme
2 springs fresh oregano
2 tbsp. chopped parsley
2 oz. dried chile ancho (about 4)
2 cups water
28 oz can hominy, water drained
1 bunch radishes, washed and chopped
½ head cabbage or lettuce, shredded
1 onion, finely chopped
Your favorite salsa or Tabasco® sauce
Fresh oregano or cilantro for garnish
6 limes, cut into wedges
Fill a 6 qt. stock pot with 4 qts. (4 lt.) of water and add the chicken breasts, necks or backs, pork chops, pig’s feet, celery, onion, carrots, garlic, pepper, thyme, oregano and parsley. Bring the pot to a boil, and then lower to a gentle simmer. After 45 minutes, remove the chicken breasts and pork chops from the pot and reserve. Continue to simmer the remaining ingredients covered over a low flame for 2 more hours.
Remove the meat from the chicken breasts and pork chops. Dice the meat into bite-sized pieces. Set aside. (If possible, return the chicken breast rib bones and pork chops bones to the simmering broth.)
Meanwhile, place the chile ancho in a small saucepan and fill halfway full with water. Bring to a boil and simmer for 5-7 minutes until the chiles are tender. Drain and discard the water and allow to cool completely. Remove the stems and seeds, rinsing if necessary to dislodge any remaining seeds. Place the chiles along with 2 cups of water in the container of a blender and puree until smooth. Set aside.
After 2 hours, remove the simmering broth from the heat and allow to cool. Strain the stock, removing and discarding all the bones and vegetables.
Return the strained stock to the stock pot, skim off any unwanted fat, and bring to a gentle simmer again. Add the chopped chicken and pork along with the pureed chile and drained hominy. Simmer for another 10 minutes.
Serve the pozole in soup bowls, offering the garnishes on the side.