Thursday, December 23, 2010

Pork Birria and slasa EL CHIVITO

Birria de Puerco

2 pork hocks

2 lbs. pork shoulder


1 cup coarse salt

1 cup sugar

1 cup cider vinegar

8 cups water

2 whole, dried chili cascabel

1 whole dried chili pasilla

1 whole dried chili chipotle

1 head garlic, cut in two

2 tbsp whole black peppercorns

2 cinnamon sticks

6 bay leaves

1 handful coriander stems/roots

2 onions, cut into 4

2 carrots cut in 2

3 branches of celery cut in 2

2 roma tomatoes cut in half

1 onion, finely diced

2 branches of celery, finely diced

2 cups cooked beans, drained, cooking liquid reserved

1 chayote, peeled and cut into small cubes

1 tbsp dried Mexican oregano

Finely diced onion and coriander for garnish

Dry Mexican oregano for garnish

3 big pieces chicharonnes for garnish

Fresh tortillas

Bring to a boil all the ingredients for the brine, turn off and let infuse for about 20 minutes. Return to a boil, add pork and cook simmering about 5 minutes. Remove from heat and let cool for about 25 minutes to be able to handle. Strain out liquid and set aside garlic and chilies for later braise. Remove skin from pork hocks, drain on paper towels and season all pork with salt.

Heat 2 tbsp vegetable oil in a large ovenproof pot. Sear pieces of pork on high to color all sides. Add the largely cut celery, onion, tomato and carrots and cook 2-3 minutes longer. Add reserved bean cooking liquid and water to cover most of the way up the meat. Add the garlic and chilies reserved from the brine. Bring to boil, cover and cook in a 325F oven for about 2-3 hours until meat is very tender.

Remove meat and strain juices, degreasing with a ladle as much as possible. Shred meat and reserve. Rinse pot and put back on medium-high heat. Cook diced onion and celery in 1 tbsp vegetable oil for 2-3 minutes then add chayote and cook for 2-3 minutes. Add beans, oregano and shredded meat and cook for 1 minute longer. Add braising liquid and bring to a boil, skimming broth. Simmer for 10-15 minutes to let flavors come together

Serve with tortillas, salsa and condiments on side.


4 whole, dried chili pasilla

1 whole, dried chili chipotle

4 cloves garlic, unpeeled

1 cinnamon stick

2 onions cut into large chunks

1 can whole tomatillos

3 roma tomatoes cut in quarters

1 cup water

Juice of 1 lime

Handful coriander leaves


This salsa was inspired by a place in Mexico City called EL CHIVITO where they make the best goat birria accompanied by the best tortillas I have had in a long long time for sure. They serve it with an amazing sauce that I have never seen anywhere else in Mexico. Its a dark salsa roja with whole braised tomatillos to burst into your birria broth. Here is our version.

In a very hot dry pan toast chilies, garlic and cinnamon stick until nice and fragrant. Remove from heat, remove stems from chilies, peel garlic and set aside with cinnamon stick. Add onion, tomatoes and tomatillo (saving 6 for later) to pan with chilies and cook on high until charred.

Return garlic to pan with cilantro and water. Cook at a low simmer to reduce liquid and soften chilies, about 15 minutes. Pour contents of pan into blender and blend until smooth.

Return to pot and add whole tomatillos. Bring to a simmer and season with salt and lime juice to taste.

Serve with pork and bean stew.