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Email Eric 







If you're a fan of Chili Verde, you'll love this recipe.  Back in 2008, during a visit to Meling Ranch, BC, I had a chance to watch the staff prepare this dish, and pester them with many questions.  I've made this at home, and it tastes like the amazing dinner I enjoyed at Meling Ranch.  At Meling Ranch, the staff generally make this dish for many more people, but I've scaled down the recipe to make four or five servings.

Special tools:  Cast Iron pot with lid - that's what Meling Ranch uses but any large pot will work
Preparation time:  About an hour and a half
Cooking time:  Around three hours
Yield:  4 generous servings  


2 pounds pork shoulder, or any cut of pork
1 quart... or more chicken stock, preferably home made
1 pound - or more - fresh tomatillos, diced
1 onion, any variety, diced
5 cloves garlic, crushed and diced
1/2 pound fresh chili peppers, jalapi
ņos, etc...  "Mix and match" if you choose... 
Fresh cilantro for garnish
Olive oil
Bacon grease - see text
Salt, to taste
Cumin, to taste
Chili Powder, to taste
Carne Asada seasoning
Masa Harina
Bacon - optional

Plan on spending most of your afternoon making this amazing meal, but it's fun, relaxing, and well worth the effort.  Also, please keep in mind, as in keeping with the spirit of Meling Ranch, this recipe is "a little of this and a little of that," and nothing is exact.  Use Masa Harina instead of flour, as the masa adds a wonderful, "earthy" touch to this great entree.


1)  Cut the pork into small pieces, about 1/2" by 1/2" or smaller.  Season all pieces with Carne Asada seasoning, set aside, and reserve.  See the next step!!  In my case, I used "Pappy's Blue Label Seasoning," made in Fresno, CA.  Any seasoning of your taste preference will work.

2)  As you're dicing the pork, remove and reserve much of the fat, as it will be used to cook the pork, and the chili gravy.

3)  Core and dice tomatillos.  Peel garlic and crush, then dice.  Peel and dice onion.  Remove seeds and stems from peppers, and dice.

4)  Broil tomatillos, peppers, garlic and onion on a cookie sheet at 400 degrees for about 15 minutes, until the veggies are slightly charred.  Remove from oven, reserve, and allow to cool.  Note:  After about 12 or so minutes, keep a close eye on the broiler, as it's easy to burn the veggies beyond recognition!  

5)  In your cast iron pot, include the fat cut from the pork shoulder section, along with bacon grease - if you have it on hand - or olive oil. If you have bacon on hand, throw it in the pot, as it will enhance the meat.  Cook covered, stirring frequently, on high heat, until fat is rendered.  Cooking time will most likely be about 10 minutes.  Remove extra fat from pot leaving oil and bacon, if used.

6)  As pork fat, bacon grease and olive oil is rendering, roll diced pork in Masa Harina making sure each piece is completely coated.

7)  When charred veggies have cooled, add onion, garlic, peppers and half of the tomatillos to a blender.  Add about a cup of chicken broth and whirl until liquefied.  Reserve.

8)  Over medium/high heat, add pork to rendered pork fat/bacon grease.  Cook, constantly stirring, until all pieces are browned; about 4 or 5 minutes.

9)  Add limited veggie mix, remainder of diced tomatillos to the pot.  Add chicken broth until mixture has the consistency of a stew. Add salt, cumin and chili powder to taste.  Cover and simmer on low heat for 3 or more hours.  Stir every half hour and scrape bottom of pot to make sure nothing sticks.

10)  Adjust consistency to you taste by adding more chicken broth or Masa Harina.

Serve with fresh salsa, corn tortillas, and Mexican potatoes.  Note that Mexican potatoes are simply Russet potatoes cut into 1/2" cubes, seasoned with Carne Asada seasoning and olive oil, and baked or broiled.  Refried beans or any variety of beans work as a side dish.

Here are a few photos...

Photo:  Diced pepper, onion, garlic and tomatillos, after being broiled on a cookie sheet at 400 degrees for about 15 minutes.  I'm glad I checked on them in a timely manner, as in a couple more minutes, they would have been burned to a crisp.  It took them about 20 minutes to cool before I was able to add them to the blender.

Photo:  I've added the veggies and chicken broth to the meat, and it's simmering on the stove.  Cooking time on low is around three hours or so.  By the way, the black specks from the charred skin of the peppers, which is desired.

Photo:  Mexican potatoes make an excellent side dish, but any variety of beans or rice will work just fine.  Actually, Chili Verde is a "stand alone" main dish, so you really don't need any enhancements beside fresh salsa and toasted corn tortillas.

Photo:  The complete meal of Chili Verde, along with a helping of Mexican potatoes, salsa cruda, and a couple of corn tortillas, toasted over a burner, the way it's done in Mexico.  

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