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Santa Fe is well-known for its great food, rich with flavors native to the Southwest and elevated by restaurants like Tomasita's and The Compound. During Out Photo Director, Greg Garry's recent trip to Santa Fe, he found a way to bring a bit of the city home: by learning how to create some of the cuisine from a local expert.
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"If you prefer the DIY approach, take a class in the Santa Fe School of Cooking where you can get a hands-on lesson by culinary anthropologist Lois Ellen Frank, the Indiana Jones of tamales," Garry writes.
Below, the recipe for Carne Adovada, a red chile based stew of braised pork made using the Mexican cooking technique called adobada, or cooking something in an adobo sauce.
Carne Adovada (serves 8)
1/3 c. peanut or vegetable oil
3-1/2 lbs. pork loin or butt, cut in 3/4-inch cubes
2 c. diced onion
2 T. minced garlic
4 c. chicken broth or water
2 t. ground coriander seed
2 t. dried Mexican oregano
2 t. chile caribe
3/4 c. Chimayo ground red chile, mild or medium
1 T. red chile honey
2 T. Sherry vinegar or red wine vinegar
salt to taste
Preheat the oven to 350°.
Heat the oil in a large skillet and brown pork in batches. Set the pork aside. Add the onion to skillet and sauté until golden. Add the garlic and sauté for 1 minute. Deglaze the skillet with 1 c. of the chicken broth, loosening the browned bits with a spoon.
Place the coriander, oregano, chile caribe, red chile, honey, vinegar and salt in the workbowl of a food processor. Add the cooked onions, garlic and broth from the skillet and 2 more c. of chicken broth. Process until the mixture is thoroughly combined.
Place the browned pork, the chile marinade and the remaining 1 c. chicken broth in an ovenproof pot or dish, stir to combine well, and cook for 1 hour or until the pork is tender.
Optionalseasonings: ground canela, ground cumin seed, toasted ground chile seeds, toasted ground pumpkin seeds.
Note: This dish reheats wonderfully and is better the next day.
Note: The traditional method for making this dish is to mix the marinade ingredients together and pour this over the meat. Cover the mixture and refrigerate overnight. Pour the meat and the marinade into an ovenproof casserole or pot and bake, covered, for 2 to 2-1/2 hours, or until tender. The method described above, although not so traditional, brings out the flavors of the onion, garlic and pork because the ingredients are caramelized or browned first. Whichever method you choose, the dish is full of flavor and will be a favorite. You can serve the Carne Adovada over chile rellenos, rice, wrapped in a flour tortilla as a burrito, or with beans and posole.