Pork and Ancho Stew

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  • Level: Easy
  • Total: 3 hr 50 min
  • Active: 50 min
  • Yield: 6 servings
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4 dried ancho chiles, seeded and stemmed

4 cups chicken stock 

3 to 3 1/2 pounds pork shoulder, cut into 2-inch chunks for stewing 

Salt and pepper

Salt and pepper 

2 to 3 tablespoons olive or vegetable oil 

6 to 8 cloves garlic, smashed from skins 

3 to 4 medium carrots, chopped 

2 large fresh bay leaves or dried pimento leaves 

2 onions, chopped 

1 jalapeno pepper, chopped 

1 teaspoon ground cumin

Pinch ground cloves 

Small piece cinnamon stick 

2 limes, juiced 

One 28- to 32-ounce can plum tomatoes 

Handful fresh cilantro leaves, chopped 

Serving suggestions: white rice and sliced fresh or pickled jalapeno peppers 


  1. Add the anchos to a medium pot with the chicken stock, and bring to a simmer. Heat until the chiles are softened, about 15 minutes.
  2. Pat the meat dry and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Heat a large Dutch oven with the oil over medium-high heat. Brown the meat in batches and remove to a plate. Add more oil, as necessary. Add the garlic, carrots, bay leaves, onions, jalapenos, cumin, cloves and some salt and pepper. Cook partially covered for a few minutes.
  3. Puree the anchos and stock together. Add the ancho stock to the Dutch oven with the cinnamon stick, lime juice, tomatoes (mash up the tomatoes a bit). Stir in the cilantro and return the pork to the Dutch oven. Stir, cover and cook over low heat 2 1/2 to 3 hours until very tender, stirring occasionally. Remove the cinnamon stick and bay leaf. Cool completely and store in the refrigerator for a make-ahead meal.
  4. Reheat over medium heat. Serve with rice and jalapenos.
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