Packable Pozole
Ren Fuller
Yields 6 Servings Total Time 1 hr 30 mins
AuthorBrett Cooper

Brett Cooper, Culinary Director of Sightglass in Los Angeles, loves camping in Big Sur with his family. To make his outings hassle-free he cryovacs and freezes much of his food in advance, including this hearty, smoky, pozole rojo. If you want to skip the added time and effort of cooking dried hominy, feel free to use canned.

How to Make It

1

The night before you want to cook the pozole, soak the dried hominy in water, covered by at least 3 inches. This can be done at room temperature. Season the chicken thighs with salt, black pepper, and a dusting of smoked paprika. Place them in a container covered in the refrigerator.

2

The next day, drain and discard the water the hominy was soaked in. Place the hominy in a pot and cover it with water. Add a pinch of salt and simmer aggressively over medium-high heat until the kernels are all splitting open and tender, about 2 hours. Remove from heat and let stand in the cooking liquid.

3

Preheat the oven to 425. Place the chicken thighs in a baking pan tall enough to add liquid (the chicken thighs should fit snugly). Bake in a preheated oven for 15 minutes. Take the pan out of the oven and lower the temperature to 375. Carefully add 1/3 of the chicken stock, 2 cloves of garlic, half of the onion, and the bay leaves. Cover with foil and return to the oven for 30-45 minutes or until the chicken is falling off of the bone. Let it cool for a while in the liquid, then remove the skin, bones, and bay leaves and discard. Strain out the garlic and onion and place them in a blender. Shred the chicken meat and return it to the cooking liquid and set aside.

4

Toast the chiles at 375 for 4 minutes. Place them in the blender with the cooked onion and garlic. Add the rest of the raw garlic and onion, the oregano, cumin, and the rest of the chicken stock. Blend on high until very smooth, seasoning with salt and pepper to taste. Strain through a fine sieve (optional). Add the blended ingredients to the shredded chicken and its cooking liquid. Add as much hominy as you'd like and season to taste.

Ingredients

 6 chicken thighs, bone in, skin on
 16 oz dried hominy (can substitute 32 oz canned/cooked)
 2 tbsp smoked paprika
 6 cups chicken stock
 6 cloves garlic, peeled
 ½ yellow onion, peeled
 2 dried bay leaves
 1 tsp dried oregano
 4 ancho chiles, dried, stems and seeds removed
 4 guajillo chiles, dried, stems and seeds removed
 1 tsp ground toasted cumin
 salt
 black pepper

Directions

1

The night before you want to cook the pozole, soak the dried hominy in water, covered by at least 3 inches. This can be done at room temperature. Season the chicken thighs with salt, black pepper, and a dusting of smoked paprika. Place them in a container covered in the refrigerator.

2

The next day, drain and discard the water the hominy was soaked in. Place the hominy in a pot and cover it with water. Add a pinch of salt and simmer aggressively over medium-high heat until the kernels are all splitting open and tender, about 2 hours. Remove from heat and let stand in the cooking liquid.

3

Preheat the oven to 425. Place the chicken thighs in a baking pan tall enough to add liquid (the chicken thighs should fit snugly). Bake in a preheated oven for 15 minutes. Take the pan out of the oven and lower the temperature to 375. Carefully add 1/3 of the chicken stock, 2 cloves of garlic, half of the onion, and the bay leaves. Cover with foil and return to the oven for 30-45 minutes or until the chicken is falling off of the bone. Let it cool for a while in the liquid, then remove the skin, bones, and bay leaves and discard. Strain out the garlic and onion and place them in a blender. Shred the chicken meat and return it to the cooking liquid and set aside.

4

Toast the chiles at 375 for 4 minutes. Place them in the blender with the cooked onion and garlic. Add the rest of the raw garlic and onion, the oregano, cumin, and the rest of the chicken stock. Blend on high until very smooth, seasoning with salt and pepper to taste. Strain through a fine sieve (optional). Add the blended ingredients to the shredded chicken and its cooking liquid. Add as much hominy as you'd like and season to taste.

Packable Pozole Rojo