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Regalito Recipes

A 'Little Gift' for You

Regalito means “little gift” in Spanish, and I felt like a kid on Christmas when given the chance to have Thomas walk me through two mouth-watering recipes, and then eat the end products.

Costilla de Puerco (one serving)
This dish is a country-style rib that tames even the most carnivorous appetites. The rib is a fattier cut, hence more flavorful, juicy, and forgiving. It is simply plated over a bed of hominy and cabbage with a splash of salsa roja coloring the plate. Cutting into my first bite, the smells of fleshy pork wafted upwards toward my nostrils. I found the rib to be hearty, smoky, and satisfying. The crunch of cabbage nicely offsets the hominy’s softness, and the more understated flavors allows the pork to be the star.

1 pork rib
1 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper
1 cup hominy
1 cup cabbage
2 cups chicken stock
Salsa Roja (see recipe)

• Season rib with salt and pepper
• Place on grill for 3 minutes, each side
• Allow meat to rest 5 minutes before plating
• Blanch hominy in chicken stock; reduce till liquid gone
• Add cabbage and let it wilt
• Pour salsa roja on plate
• Add hominy and cabbage mixture
• Place rib on top and serve

Salsa Roja (2 qts)
The “mother sauce” for many Regalito dishes is good with steak, pork, and enchiladas rojas.

1 lb Guajillo chiles (stemmed)
1 lb New Mexico chiles (stemmed)
4 tbsp Mexican oregano
1 tbsp cumin seeds
1 white onion
6 lbs tomatoes

• Toast chiles lightly, cover with hot water and let sit 20 minutes.
• Lightly toast herbs
• Sweat onions and chop
• Blacken tomatoes and chop
• Blend all ingredients and add water for smooth consistency
• Run through food mill
• Simmer sauce for 20 minutes - salt to taste

Pozole (many servings)
“P” is for party and pozole, the traditional pork-centric Mexican stew. Hominy is the foundation of this popular dish often served at parties or holidays. Regalito’s pozole is a hearty bowl boasting multiple layers of flavor. The broth’s bony, gelatinous pigs’ feet provide extra complexity. Traditionally, you add pigs’ feet back to broth, but Regalito leaves it out to cater to more widespread tastes.

The pozole comes in a large bowl with a side of warm tortillas. The cimarron-colored broth has an herbaceous aroma and is served piping hot. There is a pervasive kick of spice. The sour acidity tickles taste buds with hints of lime and tomato. I lapped up every bit, tilting my bowl to catch the last spoonfuls.

Pork stock:
2 pigs’ feet - cut and split
1 large onion - minced
4 tbsp kosher salt
1 garlic head - peeled
3 tbsp Mexican oregano
3 bay leaves

• Add pigs feet and 6 qts water to pot
• Low simmer an hour - skim off scum
• Add onion, salt, garlic, oregano, bay leaves
• Low simmer another 3 hours
• Strain out pigs feet to leave just the broth

6 lbs pork shoulder butt – 1 inch cubes
1 diced onion
2 tbsp Mexican oregano
1 bay leaf
6 garlic cloves - minced
1 6 lb can of hominy
Pork stock
2 qts Salsa Roja

Chopped onion
Chopped cabbage
Lime wedges
Chile de Árbol

• Add all ingredients to large pot
• Low simmer 2 hours – skim as needed
• Serve and garnish according to taste

Aside from these dishes, Regalito has an assortment of offerings. Sure bets: Cochinita Pibil (roasted pork in a banana leaf), Elote (grilled corn with cotija), and Chilindrinas (masa and spinach tortillas). Grab a pitcher of sangria and your stomach will shout “gracias” for the little gift of authentic Mexican cuisine.