Last year I discovered my love for tomatillos and all salsa verdes. I’m working my way through the Trader Joe’s salsa variations, have made my own tomatillo salsa and now even got to try a family member’s tomatillo sauce! My step-mom Susan’s brother, Chuck, and his wife Kaari started the company Hollister Tamales to bring Mexican cuisine all the way to New England where they live today. I tried their tomatillo sauce in this shredded pork and couldn’t wait to share. There’s really no heat to tomatillos, just pure freshness and zest to brighten up dishes from eggs to chicken to pork!
This shredded pork is something you could meal prep on Sunday. It perfumes your house and leaves a lingering scent that makes you hungry when you walk in the door. I’ve made shredded pork in the slow-cooker before and it is just as good, but I was curious to experience with it over the stove. I wanted to be able to reduce the leftover liquid gold of the beer and tomatillo salsa to form a thicker sauce for the pork. It worked perfectly!
Yellow, green and red bell peppers added such a gorgeous color to the bowl. They’re naturally sweet and get even sweeter while they sauté, caramelize and get a little charred in the pan. Don’t take the peppers off too early. You’ll feel like they’re cooking for a while, but they need to hang out on the heat to get those rustic char marks on the skin and soften.
- 1 pork shoulder or boneless loin roast, approximately 2 pounds
- 2 tablespoons garlic, minced
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 tablespoon cumin
- 1 cup tomatillo salsa, plus extra for bowl
- 1 bottle of beer
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- ½ teaspoon pepper
- The Bowl
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- ½ teaspoon sea salt
- ¼ teaspoon pepper
- 3 bell peppers, seeds removed, sliced into thin strips
- 1 cup quinoa, cooked according to package directions
- 1 avocado, diced
- ¼ cup chopped cilantro
- 1 lime
- Cut pork into about 1 inch chunks. Place pork in a large Dutch oven or pot on the stove. Add all ingredients for pork into the pot and stir.
- Bring to a boil, partially cover and turn down the head to medium low, enough for small bubbles to form. Cook for about 1 hour or until the meat is tender and easy shredded.
- With about 20 minutes left for the pork, begin to cook quinoa according to package directions.
- Heat olive oil over medium high in a cast-iron skillet or pan. Cook bell peppers and season with salt and pepper. Sauté the peppers until they are soft and lightly charred.
- Remove pork cubes from the pot once the meat is cooked. Using two forks, shred the chunks into smaller pieces. While shredding the meat, turn the stove heat up to medium high for the pot and allow sauce to reduce by half.
- Put the meat back into the pot and stir into sauce.
- Once peppers are ready, prepare a bowl. Scoop quinoa, peppers, shredded pork, ¼ of the avocado and a sprinkle of cilantro into the bowl. Then add a squeeze of lime!
This bowl could be assembled with anything you have on hand. Brown rice would work beautifully instead of quinoa. Add corn, cheese, other veggies or hot sauce. It’s really customizable. I enjoyed how the avocado warmed from the pork and peppers, got creamy and balanced the tomatillo flavors. I scooped extra salsa on top, too!
When you make a big batch of this you can package up several bowls for lunch or dinner throughout the week! I thought the pork was so good I was eating it cold from the fridge as a snack, so just a heads up – it is a hit.
Love food. Love self. Love life.