We have one long standing tradition for Christmas Eve and that’s Mexican food. The food may change a little – we made tamales from scratch one year, enchiladas a few years, and usually we make churros and mexican hot chocolate. This year we changed it up just slightly and went for a huge pot of posole. If you’re new to posole, it’s similar to chicken tortilla soup but made with hominy and usually with a richer pork broth (though my recipe is made with chicken or turkey).
My version of Posole recipe is inspired from Sunset Magazine, but I made my own turkey stock with a turkey carcas, some charred veggies and serrano chilies (which definitely boosted the flavor). But the recipe below is simple and perfect for every day use. And it’s easily doubled or tripled for a large group, which is what we had this year!
After our church Christmas Eve service this year about 20 friends joined us for posole. The hot soup, loaded with all the fixins’ was perfect on a cold holiday night. Along with a few bottles of wine shared and chatting (and singing!) into the wee hours, we had the perfect beginning to Christmas and made more great memories around our dinner table.
an easy recipe for traditional posole
- 3 large poblano peppers (1 lb. total)
- 6 garlic cloves
- 1 large onion
- 2 cans (14 1/2 oz. each) white hominy, or one bag soaked overnight
- 1 1/2 pounds boned, skinned chicken thighs*
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 2 teaspoons dried Mexican oregano*, divided
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 3 cups chicken broth
- 3 tablespoons ground red New Mexico chiles*
- Garnishes: sliced avocado, lime wedges, cilantro sprigs, radish slices, and sour cream
- Preheat broiler. When hot, broil poblanos on a baking sheet covered in foil, until blackened, turning as needed, about 15 minutes.
- Meanwhile, in a food processor or blender, whirl garlic to mince. Cut onion in chunks and pulse with garlic until chopped; set aside. Drain hominy; set aside.
- Cut chicken into 1- to 1 1/2-in. chunks and sprinkle with salt and 1 tsp. oregano. Heat oil in a 5- to 6-qt. pan over high heat. Brown half the chicken lightly, stirring occasionally, about 5 minutes. With a slotted spoon, transfer meat to a plate. Repeat with remaining chicken.
- Reduce heat to medium-high. Add onion mixture and remaining 1 tsp. oregano to pan and sauté until onion is softened, 3 minutes. Meanwhile, in a microwave-safe bowl, microwave broth until steaming, about 3 minutes. Add ground chiles to pan and cook, stirring, about 30 seconds.
- Add broth, hominy, and chicken to pan. Cover and bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer to blend flavors, 10 minutes.
- Remove stems, skins, and seeds from poblanos and discard; chop poblanos.
- Stir poblanos into posole and cook 1 minute. Ladle into bowls; top with garnishes.
*Find Mexican oregano at well-stocked grocery stores, along with ground red New Mexico chiles. *You may use pork shoulder instead of chicken thighs for a richer soup or use already cooked and shredded chicken or turkey. *Poblano peppers and Pasilla peppers may be used interchangeably ***Sometimes I also add in sweet potatoes, black beans, and corn to this recipe