Mexican Pork Chili

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  • Level: Easy
  • Total: 2 hr 50 min
  • Prep: 20 min
  • Cook: 2 hr 30 min
  • Yield: 6 to 8 servings
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3 pounds boneless pork shoulder

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

1 tablespoon toasted fennel seeds, ground

3 tablespoons ground cumin

Extra-virgin olive oil

15 whole tomatillos, husked

3 poblanos

2 white onions, quartered

4 garlic cloves, peeled

1 bay leaf

2 limes, halved

1 big bunch fresh cilantro

1 quart low-sodium chicken stock

1 cup masa harina, to tighten it up

Chili bar toppings:

Crispy fried tortilla strips, fresh corn tortillas cut into strips and deep fried in vegetable oil

Mexican crema, store-bought with lime zest

Shaved radishes, radishes shaved vertically on a mandoline

Crumbled queso fresco

2 limes, each cut into 8 wedges


  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.
  2. Season the pork shoulder with salt, pepper, fennel and cumin. Take a large roasting dish and place over medium-high heat. Add a 3-count of olive oil and sear pork shoulder all over until golden brown on the outside, 3 to 4 minutes per side. Add vegetables, spreading out tomatillos, poblanos, onion, garlic and bay leaf around the seared pork shoulder. Drizzle with olive oil, squeeze lime juice all over and season with salt and pepper. Cover the whole tray with aluminum foil and roast in the oven for 2 to 2 1/2 hours until the pork is falling apart. Remove from oven, set the pork aside and pull apart. Rake all the other ingredients into a blender (a bit at a time) with the bunch of fresh cilantro and process until smooth. Pour into a large Dutch oven. Set over medium heat and add chicken stock. Bring to a simmer and whisk in masa harina to thicken the sauce up. Fold in shredded pork shoulder and season with salt and pepper to finish. Serve with Chili bar toppings.