Pozole rojo

  • Servings : 8

I love pozole! This is a favorite comfort food that’s not Asian! I first had it in Puerto Vallarta decades ago and then recently at Tortilleria Nixtamal in NY. The first time, it was with pig trotters and the second time without and it didn’t taste much at all. I had to make my own and being a chili-freak, just had to make the red version. Hubby couldn’t stand seeing trotters or pigtails in the house so I was forced to use knuckles instead but the result is still the same – the gelatine from the knuckles gives the soup a deep flavour as well as body so that the soup becomes a big lump of congealed goodness when stored in the fridge, see recipe.

This recipe is labour-intensive but soooo worth it! The stock will take 3-4 hours to make and don’t forget to soak the hominy overnight before cooking it for 4-5 hours or until soft. Yes, I prefer the dried hominy as it tastes much better than the canned version although it does take hours to cook! If you have a pressure cooker then it’ll take around 90 minutes to cook the hominy.

The garnish just lifts the soup to another level. The usual suspects are cabbage or lettuce, radishes, onions, coriander, jalepenos and lime and some tostados or fried tortillas. Yum!


  • 200mL of dried hominy, soaked overnight
  • 2 dried ancho chilies
  • 3 dried guajillo chilies
  • 2 onions, quartered
  • 1 tablespoon of dried Mexican oregano
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 1.5L pork stock
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • 1kg pork belly or fatty piece of pork, cut into cubes
  • 3 chopped jalepenos
  • 1/2 head of lettuce, sliced thinly
  • 1 chopped onion
  • 10 radishes, thinly sliced
  • 2 limes, cut into wedges
  • 2 avocados, sliced
  • 8 corn tortillas


Step 1

Remove the center of the hominy with a paring knife or your fingernail. This will ensure that each kernel opens up like a flower when cooked. Cook in a pressure cooker for 90 minutes or until soft. If not using a pressure cooker, allow 3-4 hours cooking time

Step 2

Remove the stems from the chilies. Soak the chilies in hot water for 30 minutes or until softened. Transfer the chilies and water to a blender. Add the garlic and 2 onions and blend until liquidized. Set aside. If you prefer more heat, you can add dried chilies (the normal kind) as the ancho and guajillo are hard to find unless you have access to speciality grocery stores.

Step 3

Sautee the pork in some oil until browned.

Step 4

Transfer the meat to a stockpot. Add the stock, cooked hominy and chili base. Add the bay leaves and oregano (crush the oregano in your hand to release its aroma before adding to the stock). Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 1 hour.

Step 5

Adjust the seasoning by adding salt and pepper to taste.

Step 6

Shallow fry the corn tortillas in some oil until crispy. Drain on paper towel.

Step 7

Serve the pozole with a garnish of jalepenos, lettuce, onion, radishes, limes, avocados and tostadas.

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