A few years ago my friend Lynette got me a year’s subscription to the Everyday Food magazine, published by Martha Stewart Living. I have a collection of about 20 issues now, and they all contain fantastically easy and delicious recipes that are great for a weekday meal (or a weekend meal, for that matter!). This pork picadillo from the June 2007 issue is a Latin-American/Mexican dish that can be used as a burrito filling, on nachos, in a quesadilla, over rice… you get the picture. I’ve only ever tried it in a burrito, but I can imagine that it would be just as good in any other application. I love the combination of smoky chipotle heat with a hint of cinnamon and cloves, along with the sweetness of the raisins. Sounds odd? Try it – it’s wonderful!
We had this in burritos along with cumin-spiced black beans, fresh Mexican-style farmer’s cheese (available at Fairways, of all places!), sour cream, salsa, lettuce, and cilantro. I am becoming a believer in the less-is-more approach to burritos – choose a few delicious toppings that compliment the flavour of the filling, rather than overwhelming it. It also makes the burrito easier to hold, fold, and eat!
The original recipe makes a lot, but it freezes well. I’ve reduced it by roughly half and adjusted the seasonings a bit. Usually the Everyday Food magazine recipes are available on the Martha Stewart website, but for some reason I can’t find this one
(adapted from Everyday Food, Issue 43, pg 66, June 2007)
1 tbsp olive oil
1/2 an onion, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
coarse salt and ground pepper
1/4 cup tomato paste
1 chipoltes in adobo, finely chopped (or about 1 tbsp chipotle purée)
1 tsp ancho, chipotle, or regular chili powder
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp ground cloves
just over 1 pound of lean ground pork (lean is important, otherwise you end up with greasy filling)
1 14 oz can of chopped or crushed tomatoes
1 tbsp cider vinegar
1/4 cup raisins, chopped
In a 2-quart pot or Dutch oven, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add onion and garlic and season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring, until onion is soft. Add tomato paste, chipotle, chili powder, cinnamon, and cloves; cook until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add pork and cook until no longer pink, stirring to break up any lumps. Add tomatoes, vinegar, and raisins, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer, partly covered, until thickened, 30 to 40 minutes.
Serve as a burrito or quesadilla filling, over rice, on nachos, in a stuffed pepper, over a baked potato… Makes at least enough for 4 burritos.