No matter how you serve this, whether you use it as a taco/burrito filling, add it to a Mexican casserole, or serve it with rice, chips and guacamole in stack-up style like we did, this salsa verde pork is fantastic.
We made it as originally designed by Joe of Culinary in the Desert – as a “naked burrito” with rice and guacamole, and a side of tortilla chips. We loved it all.
I was intrigued by the rice recipe. Basically you whir a quick fresh salsa together in the food processor with tomatoes, onions, garlic, and salt, and add it to the toasted rice grains along with some chicken or vegetable broth, then finish cooking as you ordinarily would. It turned out good – definitely garlicky, which was probably the most prominent flavor. It complimented the pork nicely.
The pork… I can’t say enough about the pork. Something about the spices, the browned meat, the pinto beans, and the salsa verde coming together just made for an excellent dish. I’d love to try it in real (non-”naked”) burritos, or in other dishes in which we might otherwise use taco meat.
[Note: The original recipe calls for cilantro to be added to the pork at the end. I bought it, I had it, and I forgot it. But it was so good we probably will just leave it out next time too. So if you like cilantro, add it. If not, you won't miss a thing.]
I also love that everything in this meal is homemade – no “packets of taco seasoning” called for here! But it isn’t difficult either. Just the right amount of effort. We served this all with tortilla chips and homemade guacamole, which I mixed up from one large avocado, a squeeze of half a lemon, a chopped tomato, and a bit of salt and garlic powder. So fresh, and delicious!
Salsa Verde Pork and Salsa Roja Rice (Original recipe here)
For the rice:
- 2 plum tomatoes, chopped
- 1/2 cup chopped onion
- 2 garlic cloves
- 1 tablespoon canola oil
- 1 1/3 cups basmati rice (I used jasmine, it’s what I had)
- pinch salt
- 1 1/2 cups vegetable broth
For the pork:
- 16 ounces ground pork
- 1/2 cup diced onion
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 teaspoons cumin
- 2 teaspoons dried oregano
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 15 ounce can pinto beans, rinsed and drained
- 1 cup salsa verde (I used a 7-oz. can, probably not quite a full cup)
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro (optional)
To prepare the rice:
In food processor, add tomatoes, onion and garlic – process until very smooth.
In a medium saucepan, heat oil over medium. Stir in rice and cook, stirring, until lightly toasted, about 5 minutes. Stir in tomato mixture and salt – cook, stirring, for 4 minutes. Add broth and bring mixture to a boil. Cover, reduce heat and simmer until the liquid has been absorbed, about 13 to 15 minutes. Remove from the heat and let stand, covered, for 5 minutes. Fluff with a fork.
To prepare the pork:
Meanwhile, in large skillet, cook pork over medium-high heat, stirring to crumble, until cooked through. Stir in onion, garlic, cumin, oregano and salt – cook until the onion has softened, about 5 to 6 minutes. Add beans and salsa – bring back to a simmer and cook until heated through, about 5 minutes. Stir in cilantro (optional).
To serve, spoon pork mixture over rice and top each serving with guacamole.
Makes about 6 servings.
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