Casa Chimayo’s posole recipe a taste of traditional New Mexico

Casa Chimayó’s posole recipe was first published in December 2011. It’s is our most popular post this time of year — it seems a lot of people want a posole recipe. We wanted to share it with you again, so we republished it. Add a bit of traditional Northern New Mexico to your Christmas or New Year’s Day dinner. Happy holidays!

Posole is pure New Mexican comfort food. While it’s served at family dinners throughout the year, it’s considered a holiday dish showing up on many family tables at Christmas and New Years. The corn based dish is rich and spicy and has been made in New Mexican families for generations. Roberto Timoteo Cordova, owner of Casa Chimayó Restaurant in Santa Fe, can trace his New Mexican roots back to 1598. His ancestors arrived with Juan de Oñate and the first Spaniards to settle here. They arrived in Chimayó in 1695 after the Spanish returned at the end of the Pueblo Revolt of 1680. At that time, they also settled in Truchas and Cordova further up the High Road to Taos.

Cordova family of Chimayo, NM at Christmas

Santa Fe recipes: Cordova family at Christmas Grandma Tita in front, photo/courtesy of Roberto Cordova

Cordova is passionate about his family’s history, including the culinary part. His restaurant serves what he calls “las comidas de las abuelas” (the food of the grandmothers). He calls it “authentic” New Mexican food. The recipes have been passed down in his family. He shares his grandmother Teresita’s (“or Grandma Tita as she was known to us”) posole recipe here. Should you have too much holiday cheer, he says it’s a great hangover cure. ¡Feliz Navidad y Prospero Año Nuevo!

Casa Chimayó’s Posole recipe

 

Posole from Casa de Chimayo

Casa Chimayo’s Posole, photo/courtesy Casa Chimayo

© Casa Chimayo Restaurant Recipe author: Helen Cordova

Posole is a very traditional dish around the holidays in Northern New Mexico.  It is a rich and hearty dish that sticks to your ribs, and warms you up from the inside out.

Serves:  6 to 8

Prep Time: 45 minutes
Cook Time: varies from 1½ to 3 hrs, depending on type of posole (hominy) selected.
Total Time: varies, depending on posole used (see note below).

Pork Ingredients

3 lbs. pork shoulder
2-4 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp cumin
1 bay leaf
1 onion, chopped fine
1 tsp salt or to taste

Chile Ingredients

10 to 12 Casa Chimayo Red Chile pods, (Note:  the more pods, the more intense the flavor and heat of the chile).
2 cups broth, or enough to allow pods to puree easily in blender (Do not fill blender more than halfway with hot liquid).
4 cloves fresh, peeled garlic
Salt to taste

Posole Ingredients

1 lb. posole, dried or frozen. Canned hominy may be substituted if dried or frozen are not available; add it in the last 15 minutes of cooking to preserve texture.
1 onion, quartered
1 tsp salt

Method

You will essentially be preparing this recipe in three stages:  pork, chile, and posole.  These are then combined into the final posole.

Step 1 – Prepare Pork

Place pork shoulder in a pot and cover with water.
Add 1 tsp salt, cumin, bay leaf and onion.
Bring to a boil uncovered and then then cook, covered, over medium heat until tender and falling off the bone; about 1½ hrs.
Remove meat from broth and let cool; reserve broth for later.Pull meat from bones and cut into small bite size pieces, set aside.

Step 2 – Prepare Chile

Place rinsed chile pods, stems and seeds removed in 2 cups of hot broth and let soak about 20 minutes, or until soft.
Place broth, pods, and garlic in blender and blend until smooth.  Add salt to taste and set aside.

Step 3 – Prepare Posole

If using dried posole let soak overnight, then proceed to next.  If using frozen, defrost thoroughly then proceed to next step.
Drain and rinse posole.
Place posole in a cooking pot and cover with water. Use approx. 2 parts water to 1 part posole.
Add onion and salt

Bring to a boil on the stove, then lower heat and simmer until posole has started to “bloom” (about 1 to 1½ hrs).  The posole will swell and start to resemble popcorn, but will still be chewy.  At this point add the pork, chile, and any remaining broth into the posole and let it finish cooking.  The key to a successful posole is watching for it to finish “blooming”.  Posole is fully cooked when it has opened completely, and is tender when chewed.

Taste and adjust seasonings.

Serve in bowl and place garnishes on the table so that each can do their own.  Garnish are optional and may include: sliced limes, chopped fresh cilantro, finely chopped onion, oregano, cubed avocado, or grated cheese.

Note:  Total cooking time for this dish will vary greatly, depending on which kind of posole you select (canned, frozen, or dried).  Best estimate would be anywhere from 2-4 hrs.  Just remember, dried posole will take the longest @ 3 hours, frozen will shorten cooking time somewhat, and canned will be the shortest at taking about 1½  hours.

Do you have a favorite posole recipe to share?

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46 Responses to “Casa Chimayo’s posole recipe a taste of traditional New Mexico”

  1. Charles Higgins
    December 22, 2011 at 8:05 am #

    Posole is a staple at our house..great recipe here..thanks..

    Cheers..

    • Billie Frank
      December 23, 2011 at 9:30 am #

      I didn’t know that. Interesting. Hope your using NM red chiles!

  2. Mike Roybal
    December 11, 2012 at 8:53 am #

    Looks very similar to my family recipe. Unfortunately for me I have to use canned hominy because that is all that is available unless I drive for an hour.

    • Billie Frank
      December 11, 2012 at 9:10 am #

      Plan ahead! I bet your family recipe is delicious.

  3. Helen
    October 2, 2013 at 6:48 pm #

    Great recipe. I had to move away from Santa Fe, but took my stash of Posole and Red Chilis with me. I added an additional step to this recipe. I made a rue of bacon fat, the chopped onion and garlic. Then added it to the red chili. It gave the Sadie’s a creamier texture and thickened it a bit. Perfect. Then I also took the liberty of adding some aromatic coriander. Amazing!!!
    H

    • Billie Frank
      October 4, 2013 at 9:22 am #

      Thank for your comment. Glad you can make posole wherever you live.

  4. Kate
    November 26, 2013 at 12:22 pm #

    I know this is from last year, but I just found it and plan to make this posole for a party – can you tell me how many portions more or less this recipe would make? Thanks!

    • Billie Frank
      November 26, 2013 at 1:10 pm #

      We never thought to ask them. Our best guess is 4 people. I have a call into the restaurant to confirm. As soon as we get the information, we’ll update the post. We should have had it in there. Thanks for calling this omission to our attention.

      • Kate
        November 26, 2013 at 1:56 pm #

        How cool that you respond so fast! Thanks! I found a recipe on Rick Bayless website that called for roughly 15 pounds of meat to serve 25 so you’re probably close!

        • Billie Frank
          November 27, 2013 at 7:58 am #

          Good to know. Still waiting to hear back from them.

  5. Rob
    December 23, 2013 at 4:36 pm #

    I’m a bit confused on the directions.. You show cumin on the list of ingredients but nowhere in the 3 steps. Is it added with the bay leaf and chopped onion in step one? Also in step one do you boil the pork covered or uncovered? I make posole every year for the Holidays and this recipe will be different than what I am used to. Thanks and Merry Christmas

    • Billie Frank
      December 24, 2013 at 9:41 am #

      Thanks for your questions as we missed those omissions. As it’s not our recipe- I checked with Casa Chimayo. The cumin goes in withe the bay leaf leave uncovered until boiling then reduce heat and cover and cook over low heat. Hope this helps. We’ll change the recipe in the post so it’s clear to readers. Happy holidays!

  6. shawncity7
    September 27, 2014 at 11:47 pm #

    My first pasole was made by someone from NM. He makes it when he’s been home for a visit and able to pick up the red chilies and dried pasole hominy to bring back with him. Unfortunately, I don’t have any relative in NM. And, I just love the dish.

    Wouldn’t it be nice if someone from that area would share the name of a local market where rest of us might be able to mail order some of the ingredients (with appropriate proportions). It doesn’t sound like there is a need for refrigeration of any of the ingredients to be shipped, so it should mail fine. I’d love to make some for my cousins at the holidays. Anyone?

  7. Elizabeth J
    November 7, 2014 at 6:15 am #

    I have never made posole. If the hominy is canned instead of cooking if for an hour and a half it only needs to be cooked for 15 minutes? After the 15 minutes is when the red chili and meat is added?

    • Billie Frank
      November 7, 2014 at 4:31 pm #

      As it’s not our recipe, I can’t say for sure. But after rereading it, it sound like you only need to cook canned for 15 minutes and it sounds like you add the meat and chile after it cooks the 15 minutes. Like any recipe, you just need to experiment.

      • Steve Collins
        November 10, 2014 at 3:59 pm #

        The trick with posole is to get it to that wonderful combination of crisp and soft. Cook it too short and it’s too chewy, too long and it’s too mushy.

  8. Carol
    December 21, 2014 at 2:09 pm #

    Can the leftover prepared posole with pork be frozen? If not, how long can it be refrigerated?

    • Billie Frank
      December 21, 2014 at 2:20 pm #

      We would freeze it for sure. Generally, we don’t keep anything in the fridge beyond a few days. There’s probably lots of food safety info on the Internet. I tend to be cautious.

  9. Katrina Hollywood
    December 27, 2015 at 5:41 pm #

    Another Christmas using this recipe (although I subbed chicken for the pork this year due to the husband’s cholesterol). Thank you again for posting. It’s the best posole recipe I’ve tried!

    • Billie Frank
      December 28, 2015 at 1:27 pm #

      So glad to hear that. Lots of people must love posole and want to make it at home. This recipe is our most popular post over the holidays. So glad you love the recipe. There are people whose families have been in NM for over 400 years who make it with chicken as that’s how the way back abuelas did it.

  10. Kathy
    March 31, 2016 at 8:17 am #

    Can you use pork loin?

    • Billie Frank
      April 2, 2016 at 12:17 pm #

      I checked with Steve, our resident cook. He thought it would be fine, but it’s not our recipe. Try it and let us know how it goes.

  11. Rebekah
    June 29, 2016 at 6:22 pm #

    I love the dried corn. It is so frangrant when it cooks. Chimayo chiles are so good.

    • Billie Frank
      July 1, 2016 at 7:02 pm #

      Chimayo chillies are fabulous! Some of the best.

  12. Lynn Belles
    July 10, 2016 at 12:38 pm #

    WOW – that looks mouthwateringly good! I think I can smell it cooking!
    Lynn Belles recently posted..Cruise with Cheap Trick! – and other 80’s bands!My Profile

    • Billie Frank
      July 11, 2016 at 8:50 am #

      You could smell it cooking- the recipe is there for the trying.

  13. lisa
    October 18, 2016 at 1:04 am #

    I like the look of this recipe, and intend to shorten cooking time substantially by cooking the pork in my Instant Pot and using the easily available canned hominy (this time! Next time I may try from dry!).

    But I’m unclear on the final step- when do you combine meat, hominy and chile? Aren’t they all supposed to simmer together for a bit?

    Thanks!

    • Billie Frank
      October 19, 2016 at 11:05 am #

      As it’s not our recipe, I can’t give a definitive answer, but I think the “finish cooking” see what I pasted from the recipe below- means to simmer all the ingredients together. In my book- the more it cooks the better it gets.

      Bring to a boil on the stove, then lower heat and simmer until posole has started to “bloom” (about 1 to 1½ hrs). The posole will swell and start to resemble popcorn, but will still be chewy. At this point add the pork, chile, and any remaining broth into the posole and let it finish cooking. The key to a successful posole is watching for it to finish “blooming”. Posole is fully cooked when it has opened completely, and is tender when chewed.

  14. Bettyj
    December 19, 2016 at 1:59 pm #

    How many lbs of dried posole to feed 6 adults?

    • Billie Frank
      December 19, 2016 at 3:40 pm #

      Sorry, it’s not our recipe. Since that feeds 5 to 8 I’d go with their proportions.

  15. Jeff Wall
    February 24, 2017 at 1:56 pm #

    Grew up in Las Cruces . Now in Kansas . So this recipe is a great reminder of home . To the non-cook this recipe may sound complicated but it’s not . Follow closely and you’ll be delighted . Can find all the ingredients even in SE Ks . Made today and will invite the family over . Thank You for this recipe !

    • Billie Frank
      February 28, 2017 at 12:05 pm #

      So glad the recipe brought back NM memories!

  16. Alan Barber
    March 27, 2017 at 8:43 am #

    This recipe looks authentic, and I intend to try it for a family gathering in two weeks. I have some dried Posole, but my memories of the BEST Posole I ever had came from a refrigerated (not frozen or dried), lye treated corn that Orlando Cassados produced at his San Juan Valley Farms in Espanola in the early 70s. We bought it in packages from the refrigerated section at the Safeway on the Taos Highway in Espanola. We washed it for about Forever until the water ran clear and cooked it until it popped (or bloomed as you call it). I would give anything to find that type of possible again as the base for your recipe. The taste was unmatched!

    Some background – MY mother taught school in Santa Fe from the late 60s to the late 80s and when I visited, she took me to many restaurants that served a traditional NM Green Chile Stew and a Traditional NM Posole. I bought, in early 1971, a small orchard in Chimayo and also ate at Rancho de Chimayo, El Paragua and the Rio Grande Cafe on the other side of the river in Espanola. I have yet to taste anything as wonderful and authentic as a NM Green Chili Stew when the greens are available in the fall, and I have rarely had anything as hot as the Chimayo Reds we bought in Chimayo, freshly dried from that year.

    Now that I live in Austin, Texas, I have noticed a resurgence of Posole at some of the more Trendy Restaurants popping up like rain lilies after a storm around Austin. People scoff at me when I tell them that the Posole, however well made, is not authentic because, for one, they are using canned Hominy. They doubt that I can tell the difference. I want to show them, and I know that if I could find the refrigerated treated corn, God Bless Orlando Cassados, they would taste something they have never tasted before.

    So I have a question – do you have any idea where I might find the refrigerated Posole? Thank you – ALAN BARBER

    • Billie Frank
      March 27, 2017 at 1:51 pm #

      Great posole memories! Thanks for sharing them. Re: refrigerated posole is a thing of the past as far as we can tell. I even checked with Santa Fe’s premier food expert. You can sometimes find frozen at the markets here- don’t know about Austin. People here use dry and the posole is great. Hope you prove your point to your doubting friends.

  17. Alan Barber
    March 27, 2017 at 2:35 pm #

    THANK YOU – I will stick with the dry, especially since I am morally opposed to using canned Hominy. I believe there is a difference, however subtle it might be, between refrigerated, dried and canned. But maybe memories are stronger than taste buds. Thanks again for what sounds like a perfect recipe – ALAN

    • Billie Frank
      March 28, 2017 at 10:23 am #

      Fresh is probably better but NM cooks have been using dried for centuries. All the great posoles we’ve eaten have, as far as we know, been mae from dry.

  18. Shannon Hamilton
    March 28, 2017 at 8:47 pm #

    Love this recipe thanks for sharing!!!!

    • Billie Frank
      March 30, 2017 at 3:33 pm #

      Our pleasure. It’s one of most read posts. Apparently a lot of people look for good posole recipes.

  19. Mate Uzcarra
    September 7, 2017 at 6:30 pm #

    Pozole ,tamales,enchiladas were eaten by the Aztecs long before the Spaniard’s arrived in the New World.I visited Spain and the staple of Spaniard’s cusine now and 400 years ago has nothing to do with tortillas and masa.What is a known fact that hundreds of families throughout centuries left Mexico and moved North to the South West bringing with them traditions like food and eating this meals during the Holliday’s. In countries like Cuba or Argentina where a high percent of the population is of Spanish heritage not from 400 years ago but a generation ago.Do not eat tamales,Pozole,ta quitos,guacamole etc.etc.They don’t have that Native American influence .

    • Billie Frank
      September 8, 2017 at 9:49 am #

      This comment seems to relate to the one from Martha. Interesting. I’m not sure how Spain came into this discussion. Corn and tamales are New World foods as is posole. Yes, many of the food traditions in New Mexico came up from Mexico and the food is also influenced by the indiginous Pueblo peoples.

      • Martha Gonzalez
        September 8, 2017 at 10:20 am #

        This is how the Spain came into the Discussion
        I was reading the history of Roberto Timoteo Cordova who can trace his Hispanic roots almost 400 years.The owner of Casa Chimayo,he
        made it seem like this recipes came from the first settles from Spain whom he was related too..Thank God for DNA testing !

        • Billie Frank
          September 10, 2017 at 5:23 pm #

          Yes he said his ancestors came from Spain and then up from Mexico with Juan de Oñate. They didn’t come directly from Spain, the post ssorry our post was more clear on this. To clarify- posole did not come to New Mexico from Spain.

  20. Martha Gonzalez
    September 7, 2017 at 7:39 pm #

    I visited Spain, people don’t eat tamales,guacamole or Posole as a staple.A Spaniard told me when he was in Mexico City he ate Pozole,and tamales all that good Mexican food.

    • Billie Frank
      September 8, 2017 at 9:46 am #

      I’m not sure how this comment relates to this post as we don’t talk about the origins of these foods. Posole came to New Mexico from Mexico. This is a New Mexican family recipe.

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  1. WIAW #5-Posole! – Happy Ramblings - December 11, 2012

    […] are many recipes out there, but I found this one for Casa Chimayo’s Posole, which looked like it had all the elements I was looking for, while being simple. I like simplicity […]

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