Pork and Poblano Stew

Hearty fall stew with pork shoulder, roasted poblano chiles, chipotle, onions, sweet potatoes, and corn.

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Photography Credit: Elise Bauer

Every time I look at a picture of this pork and poblano stew I want to eat it all over again. This is one of those lick-every-last-drop stews, so good!

Early fall is peak chile season, and we have plenty of poblanos in the garden. Every few days I pick a few chiles, char them over direct flame on the gas stove, let them steam a bit in their own heat, and then scrape off the char.

Usually we eat them right away, sometimes just with some olive oil and salt drizzled over, or wrapped in a warmed corn tortilla with a little cheese.

Pork and Poblano Stew

This time though, we decided to make pork stew with the poblanos, a stew reminiscent of pozole, but with corn and sweet potatoes instead of hominy.

Swirling in a spoonful of Mexican crema or sour cream right before serving makes the stew just lightly creamy and provides a soothing balance to the mildly spicy chiles.

Pork and Poblano Stew Recipe

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  • Prep time: 30 minutes
  • Cook time: 2 hours
  • Yield: Serves 8

Toasted shelled pumpkin seeds make a nice accent to this hearty stew. Use them if you have them, if not, don't worry, the stew will not suffer from their absence.

Ingredients

  • 4 to 5 poblano chile peppers (about 3/4 pound)
  • 1 Tbsp vegetable oil
  • 2 1/2 pounds pork shoulder, trimmed, cut into 1 to 2 inch pieces
  • Salt
  • 1 large onion, chopped (about 2 cups)
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 3 to 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 chipotle chili in adobo, minced
  • 1 Tbsp dried oregano
  • 1 quart chicken stock (use gluten-free stock for gluten-free option)
  • 1 1/2 cups fresh or frozen corn (no need to defrost if frozen)
  • 1 large (about 1/2 pound) sweet potato, peeled and diced (about 1/2 to 3/4-inch cubes)
  • Sour cream
  • Cilantro
  • Toasted shelled pumpkin seeds (pepitas) Optional

Method

1 Char, peel, and chop the poblano chiles: Char the chile peppers on all sides, directly over a gas flame, or broil, turning every minute or so until the chiles are blackened on all sides.

Place in a bowl and cover with a clean dish towel. Let sit for 10 minutes or so, then rub off the blackened charred skin.

Cut away and discard the stem, seeds, and internal veins. Roughly chop the chiles into 1 to 2 inch pieces. Set aside.

2 Sear the cubed pork: Heat the vegetable oil in a large Dutch oven on medium high heat. Pat dry the pork pieces with a paper towel and brown them, working in batches as to not crowd the pan. Sprinkle salt generously over the pork while they brown.

3 Sauté the onions and garlic: Remove the pork from the pan and set aside. Add the chopped onion and cumin to the pan and cook about 5 minutes, until translucent.

Scrape up any browned bits from the bottom of the pan while the onions cook. Add garlic and cook for a minute more.

4 Add the chipotle, poblanos, pork, chicken stock and oregano, simmer: Add the chopped chipotle to the onions and garlic. Return the browned pork to the pan. Add the chopped poblano chiles to the pan. Add the chicken stock and oregano. Bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer, cover and let cook for 1 hour.

5 Add sweet potato, corn: After an hour, add the diced sweet potato and corn to the stew. Cook for another half hour to 45 minutes, until the pork is tender and the sweet potatoes are cooked through.

To serve, spoon out the stew into bowls. Swirl in a spoonful of sour cream to each bowl. Top with chopped fresh cilantro and toasted shelled pumpkin seeds.

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Links:

Braised Pork Poblano in Cream Sauce from Constables' Larder

Roasted Poblanos Stuffed with Pulled Pork from I Breathe I'm Hungry

Pork and Poblano Stew

Showing 4 of 64 Comments

  • David Maurand

    this was fantastic

  • Sarah

    I’m making this for the second time tonight. Last time I made it my boyfriend said it was the best stew he ever tasted. It was delicious! I’m going to add a can of pinto beans towards the end to see how that turns out. Thanks for the great recipe!

  • Jarrett

    This turned out great, Elise!

    I saw cubed pork leg in the grocery store so I used that instead. Turned out very tender. After the dollop of sour cream, the flavour slightly reminded me of creamed corn. Also, I don’t have chipotle in adobo, but I do have dried chipotles. I tossed one in with the broth to hydrated and minced it afterwards.

  • Karlette

    So good! Similar to–but different from–pozole. The sweet potato and fresh corn made for wonderful flavors and textures. Perfect fall dish. (Now we just need a little cold weather!)

  • Richard Hill

    I’ve made this twice in the last month. I make a big batch each time. my wife takes it to work for lunch.

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