Chili Verde

Chili VerdeWhen you love chili as much as I do, it behooves a person to have several good recipes. That way, you can have chili as often as you like without getting bored. And while most people only think of beef when it comes to chili, you can use just about any meat you choose – or no meat at all! In general, beef, as well as other red meats, such as venison, bison, etc., is done with a Colorado – or red – sauce. Pork, chicken – and for the adventurous, seafood – is generally done with a verde – or green – sauce. Just so you know: when you see Chili Verde on the restaurant menu, it’s almost always done with pork, and that’s what we’re going to use today.

Now, this version of Chili Verde is not the easiest to make – the easiest way is to saute some cubed pork with onions and garlic, then add a can or two of chopped green chilis. And that’s a great meal right there. Here, however, is a recipe that takes just a tad longer to make and is somewhat spicier – or at least it can be.

So… take a look at the video, then read the written instructions below.

What You Need:

1 to 1-1/2 pounds of pork (your choice, almost anything will work)
1/3 cup plus 2 tablespoons oil
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
1 tablespoon chili powder
1/2 tablespoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon oregano
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 or more cayenne pepper (optional)
1 tiny pinch cinnamon
1/4 cup minced onions
2 cans chopped green chilis
2 small cans salsa verde with tomatillos (optional)

Gettin’ it Done:

Cut the pork into cubes – up to one inch in size. Trim fat and set aside.

Pour 1/3 cup of the oil and the vinegar into a one-gallon Ziplock bag. Add dry spices. Close bag and shake thoroughly to mix all ingredients.

Add pork cubes; close bag and toss around to coat pork. Once meat is thoroughly coated, release air from bag.

Marinate pork for up to four hours before cooking. The longer you marinate, the stronger the flavor.

Add remaining oil to frying pan. Add fat and saute to release fat juices (4-5 minutes), then remove.

Add onions and saute for 3-4 minutes.

Add pork and saute until browned.

Add chilis and salsa verde. Stir to combine, then simmer for 15-20 minutes.

Serve to plate using slotted spoon. Alternatively, serve in large bowls.

You can see that, even doing the marinade, this is a pretty easy recipe to recreate. You can also adjust the spices to taste, using less to create a mild version, or adding more to heat things up a bit. For those who want maximum heat, add some green habanero sauce to taste.

You can also prepare this recipe in less time by skipping the marinating, and adding the spices to the sauce instead of the marinade. I often do this when making a last-minute dinner decisions (as I did last night).

Traditionally, Chili Verde is served with rice. You can also serve refried beans and perhaps a small salad of shredded lettuce, tomato, onion and/or avocado.

Try you own hand at Chili Verde and let me know how it went, OK? And, until next time…

Play with your food!


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About Lane

Lane Baldwin is a an internationally-acclaimed singer, songwriter, author and food lover. He wasn't trained in France, and he doesn't have his own TV show. He just loves to cook, and loves sharing what he's learned over the years. In his "real life," Lane has toured the world, bringing his special brand of Blues-infused Americana to millions of fans. At home he leads a quiet life filled with good books, good food and good friends.