Thinking Rick Bayless Smoked Pork Chili Verde, but Not

Never order barbecue in a place that also serves Quiche.
Lewis Grizzard

We had fun cooking on Sunday Mike cranked up the Pitt Boss as I prepped a hunk of pork butt for braising Mexican style, simply seasoned with salt, pepper and a sprinkle or two of smoked paprika.  I was getting ready to smoke veggies on the grill the day before, but a little shower crept in so that smoking operation moved to the stovetop smoker.

Meat Ingredients

3 pounds of  1+1/2 inch cubed pork butt, seasoned with salt and pepper
1 tablespoon flour seasoned with a little salt, pepper, and smoked paprika
2 tablespoons EVOO
1/4 tsp of smoked paprika
a sprinkle of ground cumin
(* 1/2 teaspoon optional Spice House Gateway to the North Maple Garlic Seasoning)

Salsa Verde
Prepare a sheet pan for the smoker grill fill with
1 pound husked and washed tomatillos
2 jalapeños
1 medium sweet Vidalia onion, peeled and halved
5 peeled cloves of garlic
2 cups of vegetable or chicken stock
1-8 ounce can whole green chilies/Hatch is my favorite brand or TJ’s brand
salt and pepper
a handful of cilantro
1/2 tablespoon ground cumin

To tame my too hot salsa verde a bit those jalapeños were very hot!
1 teaspoon honey
2 tablespoon fresh lime juice


Drizzle all of the veggies with a couple of teaspoons of EVOO

I made the salsa verde a day ahead of time in a stovetop smoker, smoking for about 30 minutes and then tossed the slightly cooled veggies and seasonings in a blender to purée.

Add the oil to the pan and toss the seasoned pork in after about a minute of heating up the oil, sauté meat until lightly browned.

If you haven’t made the salsa ahead of time…Day of salsa verde,
prepare a sheet pan Drizzle 2 tablespoons of olive oil over vegetables and season with salt and pepper. Stir to coat.  The veggies will smoke on the grill/lid closed for about 30 minutes until soft then add them to a blender to purée.

Once the meat is browned add about 1+1/2 cups salsa to the meat along with about the same amount of stock, toss in the spices.   I did add 2 cups and the pan liquid did not reduce that much so once the meat was tender, I pulled it from the smoke and further reduced the liquid.  The pork was fabulously tender and shreddable, but I took a potato masher to break up the chunks a bit, but not necessary though.

Pour pureed vegetables into the pan with the pork along with chicken stock, green chiles, oregano, and cumin.

 Cook the chile Verde for 2  hours or until the liquid has reduced and the pork is fork tender.  Check the liquid level once or twice over the 2-hour cooking time.  Start checking the meat at about 90 minutes to see how tender it is…

Remove from the grill toss in some chopped cilantro and a little lime juice. I served the pork with warmed corn tortillas and a simple red and green cabbage slaw with shaved carrots, thinly sliced red or white onions, simply dressed with lime juice, a little honey, and EVOO, garnish with additional cilantro.