I entered my very first chili cook-off yesterday with a chili recipe I created using braised pork shoulder, fire roasted tomatillos, yellow chiles and serrano chiles. I used the recipe for carnitas, only instead of broiling the pork as you would for the tacos, I put the pulled braised pork into the crock pot with the other ingredients for about 4 hours.
Braised pork shoulder with fat removed and pulled into chunks
15 to18 tomatillos
4 to 6 yellow chiles (depending on how much heat you like)
4 Serrano chiles (again, depending on how much heat you prefer)
1 tablespoon cumin
2 teaspoons coriander
1 large onion finely chopped
6 cloves garlic, minced
1 15 ounce can of pinto beans with jalapeños, undrained
1 15 ounce can of white beans, undrained
1 juiced lime
2 tablespoons chopped cilantro
Braising liquid from the carnitas
2 bay leaves
Salt and pepper
To prepare tomatillos, remove the papery skin and discard. You will find that they are also quite sticky and will need to be thoroughly washed before cooking. While the pork was braising, I fire-roasted the chili peppers and the tomatillos on a very hot grill. You could also do this under your oven broiler on a large flat pan if you would prefer to not use the grill.
Turn the peppers and tomatillos until they are nice and charred. The pepper will be done first. Remove them from the grill and allow them to cool. When the tomatillos are done cooking they are very soft and the juices will start to seep out, so carefully remove them from the grill with tongs and try not to lose the flesh. Place into a bowl to cool.
After the peppers have cooled, carefully and with gloved hands, remove the charred skin and the stems and discard. The seeds of the chile pepper contain a lot of the heat and I like my chili a little spicy, so I left the seeds intact. If you like a milder chili, remove the seeds. Put the cooled tomatillos and the chile peppers into a food processor and pulse until they are well chopped and mixed. Pour the mixture into a crock pot.
Sauté the onion and the garlic in a frying pan with a little vegetable oil until they soften, about 3 to 4 minutes. Add the cumin and coriander to the onions and garlic and cook for an additional 2 minutes and then add the mixture to the crock pot.
Add the pork, beans and about a cup of the braising liquid to the crock pot. I poured the braising liquid into a gravy seperator so that the fat could separate before adding the liquid to the crock pot. After the chili has cooked for about an hour, check for seasoning and add about 1/2 teaspoon (or more, if needed) of salt, pepper, the lime juice and the cilantro. Cook in the crock pot for about 3 to 4 hours on high heat. As with any soup, stew or chili, I find that it’s best to make the dish and allow it sit overnight to allow the flavors to develop, but it’s great the first day, too!