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One of my all-time favorite and easy-to-make Mexican stews is Chile Colorado, and the only thing better than homemade Chie Colorado is having leftovers. As the stew simmers and rests, the meat soaks up the complex chile flavors, making it even better the next day.
Stephen and I will feast on the Mexican stew the first night and think of different ways to eat it throughout the week. For breakfast, we served the Chile Colorado with a fried egg on top, warm corn tortillas and a glass of milk. True, we don’t usually think of pairing savory meals with milk, but why should desserts have all the fun?
While milk can blunt the sweetness of sugary pastries, it contains a fat-loving compound called casein that binds with the spicy oils in chiles, providing gentle relief, allowing you to get seconds. In addition to being a fire extinguisher for your mouth and dissolving fats, it can also accentuate warm spices like cinnamon, nutmeg, and anise. So pairing milk with spicy Mexican food or even Indian and Moroccan doesn’t seem too farfetched. It’s time to take back your taste buds and boldly drink milk where no man has drunk milk before, starting with this recipe for Chile Colorado.
Serve this spicy meat stew with homemade pinto beans, a side of white rice and toasty flour tortillas to sop up all of the sauce. Don’t forget the milk. We’d love to see how you pair milk with your spicy food. Share your spicy milk pairings with us using the hashtag #MeGustaConLeche.
Servings: 4 to 6
Prep time: 20 minutes
Cooking time: 1 hour, 30 minutes
2 lbs. boneless pork shoulder, trimmed but leave some of the fat for flavor, cut into 1 inch cubes
8 dried New Mexico chiles, whole
2 teaspoons kosher salt or to taste
3 ½ cups water, approximately
3 garlic cloves, peeled, chopped
½ medium white onion, sliced
½ teaspoon ground cumin
¼ teaspoon dried oregano
Arrange the pork in one or two layers in a wide, heavy, flameproof casserole. Barely cover the meat with water, and season with salt. Cover and cook over medium heat until almost tender, about 30 minutes. Drain off most of the broth and reserve, adding enough water to make 2 1/2 cups broth. Continue to cook the pork uncovered until the fat has been rendered and the meat is slightly browned, about 5 minutes longer. Set aside.
Heat a large deep heavy skillet over medium heat. Working in batches, toast the chiles on both sides until they darken and become fragrant about 2 minutes. Be careful not to burn the chiles.
Put the toasted chilies into heat proof bowl and cover with boiling water. (You can weigh down the chiles with a small plate or canned goods.) Let the chilies soak until pliable, about 20 minutes.
Once the dried chilies are done soaking, put them into a food processor or blender along with the onion, garlic, oregano and cumin. Add some of the pork broth (about one cup) and puree. Using a spatula or spoon, push the mixture through a fine sieve. Set the red chili sauce aside.
Add the red chili sauce to the pork in the casserole dish, adding the remaining broth. Bring the liquid to a boil over high heat, then cover and reduce the heat to medium-low and cook for about 1 hour until the meat is fork tender and the sauce has thickened.
Season to taste with salt and pepper.
The stew can be refrigerated for a few days. Rewarm and enjoy with a glass of cold milk.
Discover more surprising ways to enjoy milk on the Toma Leche website.
This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of the California Milk Processor Board. The opinions and text are all mine.