February in Seattle usually involves two things: Rain and Clouds. Oh, and more rain. It’s bleak, and it makes me want to stay home in bed, lazing around with my dogs. It provides the perfect excuse for comfort food, too.
THIS, my friends, is comfort food.
I spent last week at a business conference in Phoenix. While I hated to spend any money supporting the tourist industry of the state with the most batshit-crazy Governor, and in a city with the most racist Sheriff in the nation, I loved the conference (great opportunity to network and to see old friends from all over the world) and I ADORE Southwestern food.
We ate well: We had dinner at Jose Garces’ new restaurant, Distrito. He makes incredible modern Mexican fare, and every bite was perfection. Thanks to recommendations from many of my friends, we also arrived early one afternoon to try the pizza at Pizzeria Bianco. This place is known for a long wait, but it truly is the best pizza I think I’ve ever eaten. It’s worth enduring the line to get in. Finally, we ate at an old Southwestern restaurant and had traditional, fiery Carne Adovada with beans and rice. It burned my face off in a good way, and sent me home hungry for more southwestern fare. Reading through Saveur on the plane, I stumbled across this recipe and it looked so great I made it as soon as I got home. Carne Adovada is next on my list.
This Chile Verde recipe has heat to it for sure, but not unbearably so. It’s absolutely delicious and I hope you like it as much as we did. I doubled the batch—but it didn’t last long. Great heat, killer comfort food, and the tomatillos fill your mouth with a nice fiery tang. Speaking of which, tell your mom "hey" for me...
¼ cup canola oil
2 lb. boneless pork shoulder, cut into ½" cubes
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
½ cup flour
8 oz. ground breakfast sausage
2 tbsp. ground cumin
1 tbsp. green chile powder
1 dried pasilla chile, stemmed, seeded, and chopped
½ cup chopped scallions
12 tomatillos, husked, rinsed, and finely chopped
2 medium yellow onions, finely chopped
2 serrano chiles, stemmed and finely chopped
2 Anaheim chiles, stemmed, seeded, and finely chopped
1 green bell pepper, stemmed, seeded, and finely chopped
2 cups chicken stock
1 (15-oz.) can green enchilada sauce, such as Hatch
Hot sauce, for serving
Roughly torn cilantro leaves, to garnish
Heat oil in an 8-qt. saucepan over medium-high heat. Season pork with salt and pepper; toss with flour. Working in batches, add pork to pan; cook until browned, about 6 minutes. Transfer to a bowl; set aside. Add sausage; cook, breaking up with a spoon, until browned, about 4 minutes. Transfer to bowl with pork. Add cumin, chili powder, and pasilla; cook until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add scallions, tomatillos, onions, serranos, Anaheim chiles, and bell pepper; cook until soft, about 15 minutes. Add reserved pork and sausage, stock, and enchilada sauce; cook until pork is tender, about 30 minutes. Garnish with cilantro; serve with hot sauce.