Tag Archives: posole

Posole – It’s What (was) for Supper

You’ll be happy to know The Complete Package got his posole for dinner last night. He’s been craving it ever since I mentioned it in Monday’s post. Since then, he has dropped some not so subtle hints in the comment section of a few recent blog posts. I replied, in no uncertain terms, that I couldn’t make him no damn posole until he first smoked a rack of pork ribs, because nothing makes a fabulous pot of posole like leftover smokey rib meat. Well, I’ll be danged if he didn’t walk in the back door last night with a grocery bag. That’s right. You heard me. Mr. Spoiled Rotten stopped on his way home and picked up everything he needed to smoke pork ribs. Boy howdy, when that man gets a craving…

So Mr. I Have My Needs got his big honkin’ bowl of posole for dinner, and all is right with the world. If you haven’t tried posole yet, you really should. It’s the unsung hero of Mexican stews. And we love us some Mexican food around here. If you’re up to it, click here for posole. I hope you enjoy it… and you’re welcome, Mr. I’m Gonna Go Fall Asleep On The Couch Now. {giggling}

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I’ll Have What She’s Having…

The lovely and talented Anne at From My Sweet Heart blog has been kind enough to give me this blogging award. In fact, it’s a cooking award, so I’m especially flattered. I don’t really consider myself a food blogger, since I tend to throw recipes and food reviews in with a bunch of random family and travel topics. As I’ve said before, my blog is a lot like my junk drawers. You never know what you’re going to find. And since I’ve started featuring The Complete Package’s recipes as well, I’m assuming I’ll have to share this award with him. Look, honey! We got a cooking award! Can you believe it? He’ll probably say that you’re all tuning in to see his recipes instead of mine. He may be right. If he is, free to keep that little nugget to yourself. I’m fragile. I can’t take that kind of rejection. It could break me, and no one wants to find me in the pantry drowning my sorrows in a pan of warm brownies. Trust me… it ain’t pretty.

In honor of Anne and her faith in my blog, here’s a rundown of some of the recipes TCP and I have posted over the past year. Click on any picture to see the full post. And Anne – thanks again. You made my day. Truly.

Posole - Mexican Stew

Mexican Martinis

Carnitas - Mexican Pulled Pork

Hidden Treasure Cupcakes

Muffaletta Sandwiches

"Chicken Bucket" Coleslaw

Crunchy Fried Chicken

Old family recipe - Sweet Pickles

Flank Steak Sandwiches

Mom's Adorable Little Piggy Buns

Smoked Pork Ribs

Oatmeal Cinnamon Cookies

And in the spirit of sharing, here’s where I go to find culinary inspiration:

Comfortably Domestic
The Hill Country Cook
Jenna’s Everything Blog
A Sweet Pea Chef
Gingerbread Bagels
Brown Eyed Baker
Wanna Be A Country Cleaver
Honey Sage

If you have time, click on the links above and visit these fine ladies. They are creative, inspirational and a lot of fun, and I love them all. And don’t forget to visit Anne at From My Sweet Heart. She’s a great example of the best thing about blogging – the new friends you make along the way. Have a great week!
-NB

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TCP Cooks: Smoky Baby Back Ribs


Of all the things The Complete Package cooks, his smoked meats are among my favorites. Pork ribs, brisket, pork tenderloin, chicken breasts – it’s all good. One of my personal favorites is the pork ribs. They’re not only delicious as a meal – with baked beans and potato salad, they are fabulous as leftovers. Once the meat falls off the bone (literally), it can be used in posole, pulled pork sandwiches, and one of my favorite light summer meals – smoky pork lettuce wraps. Today, I’m sharing TCP’s secret formula for fall-off-the-bone smoky pork ribs and those easy, flavorful wraps.

Here’s what you’ll need for the ribs:
1 rack of pork baby back ribs
2-3 teaspoons of garlic salt
2-3 tablespoons of Salt Lick Dry BBQ Rub
aluminum foil and oak smoking chips

First, remove the pork ribs from the package and rinse them thoroughly. Pat dry with paper towels. Using a sharp knife, remove the silver skin from the back side of the ribs and leave the fat on the top side. Sprinkle liberally with garlic salt, then apply a light coat of the dry rub mix, rubbing it in until the entire rack is coated. If you can’t find Salt Lick rub, you can order it online or simply substitute your favorite brand. If you’re in Texas, you’ll find it in HEB stores.

TCP uses a gas grill, but you could do this with charcoal, too. Heat the grill to high heat and sear the ribs on both sides, until they are browned and crispy. Remove the ribs from the grill so you can adjust your grill temperatures as follows. Remember: the key to tender smoked ribs is “slow and low” which means a longer cooking time at low heat. The result is smoky perfection.

If you are using a gas grill, turn off the heat on ½ of the grill, and turn the heat on the other ½ of the grill down to medium heat. This divides your grill into a “warm” side and a “cool” side for smoking your ribs. Place your ribs back on the cool side, and a wood chip packet on the warm side (see below).

If you are using a charcoal grill, remove the grill from your cooker and push your charcoal briquettes to one side of the grill. If you still have quite a few hot coals, use a pair of tongs to remove some of them. You want half of your grill to be free of coals, and half your grill to have just enough hot coals to cause your wood chip packets to smoke. Use extreme caution when moving hot coals!!

Rip off 2 sheets of aluminum foil about 12-14” long. Place 1 ½ cups of oak smoking chips in the center of each sheet and fold them into a sealed packet. Using a sharp knife, cut 6 to 8 slits in the top of the foil packets to allow the smoke to escape. Place the ribs on the “cool” side of the grill and one of the oak chip packets on the “hot” side. Close the grill and allow the ribs to smoke for 30 minutes. After 30 minutes, remove the first wood chip packet and replace it with the second. Smoke for an additional 30 minutes, making sure the “cool” side of the grill doesn’t get too hot, overcooking or drying out your ribs.

After one hour of smoking on the grill, place the ribs into a baking pan, cover tightly with foil and place them in a warm oven (250F) for 3 hours. When you remove them from the oven, remove the foil and allow your ribs to rest for 10 minutes before cutting into them. When I say cutting them, I really mean using tongs to pull the rib bones out. It’s not really cutting if they fall apart when you touch them. As a bonus, your house is going to smell fabulous and your neighbors are going to be ringing doorbells trying to identify the source of this heavenly aroma. It’s up to you whether you share or not. I’m not saying a word.

Smokey pork, scallions & hoisin on crisp Boston lettuce? Win-win-win!

For the lettuce wraps, you’ll need:
one head of Boston lettuce
2 to 3 cups of leftover smoky pork rib meat
2 or 3 scallions, sliced lengthwise into 3-4” strips
your favorite hoisin sauce

Separate your head of lettuce into individual leaves, cut your scallions into thin julienned strips, and warm your smoky rib meat. To serve, hold one lettuce leaf in your hand. Place a spoonful of smoked pork in the lettuce leaf, add scallion shreds and top with hoisin sauce. Roll and consume. It’s that easy. If you’re a rice lover, you can add steamed rice to your lettuce wraps. If you like crunch, you can add those crispy chow mein noodles. I’m a purist. I like to keep it simple with pork, scallions and hoisin. But that’s the beauty of leftovers. You can be as creative or as straight forward as you like. I just wish I had the words to describe how incredible this tastes. Oh, TCP and smoky pork… I love you so!

Now, if you'll excuse me, I have a date with a lettuce wrap.

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Posole – It’s a Mexican-Style Stew

Posole - It's What's for Supper

Posole (poe-SO-lay) is one of those Mexican dishes you may not have heard of. For me, it’s the unsung hero of stews. It is delicious and easy to make and should be in everyone’s recipe box. You really should try it sometime and see what all the fuss is about. C’mon…don’t be afraid to make a new friend.

This is my go-to meal when The Complete Package smokes a rack of pork ribs and we have leftover meat. And on his behalf, let me state for the record that TCP smokes a mean rack of pork ribs! Anything leftover after rib night gets picked off the bones and frozen in air-tight containers for posole. It’s also the reason I keep a large can of hominy in my pantry at all times. I like to plan ahead like that. And I’m the queen of recycling just about everything, including pork.

Here’s how I like to make posole:
1 tablespoon of canola oil
1/2 of one yellow onion, diced
2 jalapeno peppers, seeded and diced
1 poblano pepper, roasted, seeded and chopped
3 cloves of garlic, minced
One 29-ounce can of hominy, drained and rinsed
One 15-ounce can of tomato sauce
One cup of smoky pork rib meat, chopped
2 cups of chicken stock
1 teaspoon of kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon of chili powder
1/2 teaspoon of smoked paprika
Pinch of cumin (or more, to your taste)
1/2 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
Sour cream, to dollop on top

In a large saucepan over medium heat, cook the oil, onion and peppers until translucent. If you don’t like heat, leave the jalapenos out, but keep the poblano – it adds so much flavor. Next, add the garlic and stir for about 30-45 seconds or until you start to smell it. Add the drained hominy, tomato sauce, smoky pork, chicken stock and all the dry spices. Save the cilantro and sour cream for the end. Stir to combine all the ingredients, then put a lid on it and let it simmer for 30-45 minutes, stirring occasionally. Turn off the heat and allow the stew to sit for at least one hour. Trust me, it helps all the flavors come together. Don’t skip this part. After one hour, bring the posole back to a simmer to heat it back up. Add the fresh chopped cilantro and give it all a stir. Then spoon the posole into bowls, top with sour cream and go for it. You can serve this with warm flour tortillas or a crusty loaf of French bread. And if you don’t like this recipe, I’ll donate a can of hominy to my local food bank in your honor. That’s how good it is. Pinkie swear.

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