5. Carne Adovada – I am New Mexico

5. Carne Adovada



Carne Adovada
Serves 4 to 6

  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • 5 tablespoons all-purpose flour, divided
  • 4 tablespoons + 2 teaspoons New Mexico red chile powder, divided [see Kitchen Notes]
  • 2-1/2 cups warm water
  • 3 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
  • 2-1/2 teaspoons dried oregano, divided
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper [see Kitchen Notes]
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3 pounds cubed pork stew meat, from pork shoulder or pork butt
  • 2 tablespoons butter

Put on a kettle of water to boil. In a skillet or frying pan, heat oil over medium heat. Whisk in 3 tablespoons of flour and brown until light golden brown. [I used theDIREKT Whisk from IKEA; to me, it’s the perfect tool for preventing lumps in sauces. Anytime you see whisk or stir in this recipe, I was using this well-designed device.] Blend in 4 tablespoons of chile powder. Slowly add water, whisking until lumps are removed. Add garlic, 2 teaspoons oregano, cumin, cayenne pepper and salt. Simmer on medium heat for 15 minutes, stirring frequently. Remove from heat and let cool.

Place pork in a one-gallon, zippered plastic food storage bag. When chile mixture has cooled, add it to pork, seal bag and mix until pork is covered with chile. Marinate pork for at least 12 hours or overnight.

Preheat oven to 350º F. Transfer pork and marinade to a covered dutch oven or roasting pan. Roast pork in preheated oven for at least 2-1/2 hours, or until meat is very tender. You can also cook it in a slow cooker—I was seeing times of 4 hours or more; but since I don’t have a slow cooker, I can’t give you accurate timing.

Remove from oven, transfer meat to a large bowl with a slotted spoon and cover to keep warm. Place dutch oven with sauce over a medium flame on the stove and stir in remaining 1/2 teaspoon of oregano and 2 teaspoons of chile powder.

Make a roux. This quick and easy faux roux, a simple restaurant cheat, will thicken the chile sauce nicely. Heat a small nonstick skillet over a medium flame. Melt the butter in the skillet and gradually add the remaining 2 tablespoons of flour, whisking constantly until it is completely blended and a golden brown.

Transfer butter/flour mixture to chile sauce, whisking it in to thoroughly blend and thicken. Remove from heat. Return meat and any accumulated juices to sauce and mix to coat. Serve.