If you’ve ever tried to eat traditional Mexican food, then you know that it can be hard to find the right balance between the spices and the flavors.
But what if I told you that you could make an amazing meal with just two simple ingredients?
The answer is menudo!
This classic Mexican stew is made up of chunks of pork, cooked down until tender and served with beans as well as other toppings such as cheese, onions, peppers, tomatoes, and more.
What is pork menudo?
Pork menudo is a classic Mexican stew made of chunks of pork, which is cooked down until tender, and served with beans as well as other toppings such as cheese, onions, peppers, tomatoes, and more.
Pork menudo is known by many names around the world including chicharron de puerco (Spanish), menúdo (Portuguese), and menù del porc (Italian).
Whatever you call it, this dish has been enjoyed by people throughout Mexico for centuries.
It’s no surprise that pork menudo is one of America’s most popular dishes since many people have grown up eating it.
But did you know that pork menudo was originally created to feed poor people who couldn’t afford meat?
What are the ingredients of pork menudo?
There are three main components to pork menudo:
Lean pork, which is usually used for this recipe (but not always)
Other toppings such as onions, tomatoes, peppers, cilantro, etc.
To prepare pork menudo, you first need to brown the pork chops in oil before adding the rest of the ingredients and simmering them together.
You can either use a slow cooker for this step, or just put everything into a large pot over medium heat and let it cook slowly.
The pork should take about an hour to soften, and the beans should soak overnight.
How do you cook pork menudo?
So how do you prepare this tasty dish?
Pork menudo is easy to make—just cook the pork shoulder/shanks first with aromatics (onions, garlic, etc.), then add the rest of the ingredients together and let it simmer until everything is done.
You can cook it on the stovetop or slow cooker, but we recommend using a pressure cooker for best results.
Here’s our recipe for pork menudo:
1 tablespoon oil
4 large cloves of garlic, minced
6 large yellow onions, chopped
3 tablespoons tomato paste
2 tablespoons paprika
1 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon oregano
1 teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon black pepper
5 pounds pork shoulder/shank, cubed
4 cups water
¼ cup white vinegar
1 bay leaf
¾ cup canned diced tomatoes
1 cup corn kernels
1 bunch scallions, sliced
To start off, heat up a deep skillet over medium heat and pour in the oil.
Once the oil is hot, sauté the garlic and onion for about five minutes, until they begin to turn translucent.
Add the rest of the ingredients except the tomatoes and corn, and season with the salt and pepper.
Cook on low heat for 30 minutes.
Then, increase the heat to high, and add the tomatoes and corn.
Continue to cook until the meat is tender and the sauce has thickened, approximately 40-50 minutes.
Remove the bay leaf before serving.
What is the history of pork menudo?
Menudo literally translates into “stewed intestines.”
The word came from the Spanish name for the pig intestine, which was used in this recipe to create the stew.
In Mexico, menudo originated during the colonial era from the indigenous people.
When the Spanish arrived, they brought this stew with them.
They adapted it to include chorizo sausage and added more spices to it.
From there, the popularity of menudo grew and eventually spread throughout Latin America and the United States.
Today, pork menudo is considered one of the most traditional dishes in Mexico.
What are the different versions of pork menudo?
There are many different ways to cook pork menudo.
You can use any combination of pork, beans, vegetables, seasonings, and even herbs.
The most common version is made with pork belly (the fat part of the pig) and is seasoned with chili powder, cumin, oregano, garlic, onion, and salt.
But you can also add tomato sauce, rice, potatoes, or corn into the mix.
To create a thicker stew, you can always add beans or ground pork instead of the pork belly.
If you want a lighter dish, you can skip the pork belly altogether and add shredded pork shoulder instead.
Where does pork menudo come from?
Menudo is a staple dish in Mexico, where it’s known simply as “pig intestines stewed with beans.”
The dish was traditionally prepared by boiling pig intestines in water along with salt, garlic, onion, cumin, coriander, and chili powder.
Once cooked, these ingredients were discarded and the broth was mixed with black beans and corn kernels before being served.
Pork menudo recipe
While this method has been around for hundreds of years, modern menudo recipes have taken on many forms since then.
Some versions call for boneless pork shoulder instead of pork leg.
Others include vegetables such as carrots, potatoes, and even sweet potato.
But the basic ingredients of pork and beans remain the same.
Why is pork menudo a popular dish?
Menudo is one of those dishes that are easy to prepare and even easier to enjoy.
You don’t need any fancy equipment, and you don’t have to spend hours preparing this dish.
All you need is a pot, a frying pan, and some time to let the pork simmer slowly.
The flavor of pork menudo has been compared to everything from Chinese food to Italian cuisine.
The dish is usually served over rice, but you can also serve it with tortillas instead.
If you want to spice things up a bit, try adding some green sauce or salsa verde to the mix.
As long as you follow the recipe below, you shouldn’t run into any problems with overcooking this dish.
But if you do, just add a little water and continue cooking until the pork becomes tender.
What are some tips on cooking pork menudo?
Menudo is one of those dishes that takes time to prepare, but not much effort.
If you have the right equipment, this is a meal that will impress friends and family alike.
The key to making this dish stand out is finding the perfect combination of spice and flavor.
Let’s take a look at how to cook pork menudo:
What are some common mistakes when cooking pork menudo?
Menudo is one of those dishes that seems easy enough to prepare, but turns out not so tasty.
And unfortunately, there are a lot of ways to mess this up.
First off, you have to make sure that you get all the parts of the pig involved in the recipe.
There needs to be pork shoulder (tenderloin), pork belly, and pork neck.
These are all used in the cooking process, although they may not end up being eaten by everyone at the table.
You also need to make sure that you choose the best quality of meat.
You want to go for something that has been raised on a farm, not a factory farm.
The animals should live a natural life, eating grass instead of corn, and spending time outdoors.
It’s also important that you don’t overcook the pork.
If you let it sit too long, the fat will start separating from the meat, which makes the whole thing taste horrible.
Finally, you need to make sure that you season the pork with salt before you start cooking it.
That way, you can add extra flavor later on.
And if you’re making menudo with beans, you should also add some cumin, oregano, and chili powder to the mix.
These are all things you can learn about by watching a few YouTube videos or reading online reviews.
But once you’ve got everything figured out, you’ll know how to make the perfect pork menudo.
What are some serving suggestions for pork menudo?
The best way to enjoy this dish is to serve it over rice or pasta, which will soak up all the juices.
If you don’t have any, you can always add noodles to the bottom of the bowl and pour the liquid over top.
You can also serve pork menudo over tortillas or even in tacos.
You can also try serving menudo in burritos by filling them with rice or beans and topping them off with shredded lettuce, cilantro, pickled onions, salsa, and guacamole.
Or you can pair it with chips and dip, or serve it as a main course with cornbread and greens.
What part of the pig is menudo?
Menudo is made out of pork shoulder, which is one of the most popular cuts of pork.
Pork shoulder (also known as Boston butt) has a lot going for it, including being relatively cheap and easy to prepare.
The meat is usually sold in large pieces and you have to break them into smaller pieces yourself before cooking.
Because this cut of meat is so versatile, it’s possible to use it in a variety of dishes.
We’ll discuss the different ways you can enjoy pork shoulder later in this article.
What is the meat cut of menudo?
Menudo is typically made with pork shoulder, which is a fatty cut of meat that has been slow roasted for a long time.
The meat is then shredded into bite size pieces and cooked down until soft and tender.
When you serve this dish, you have a choice of how much fat is left in the final product.
Some people prefer their menudo very fatty while others want it to be leaner than most stews.
Are there different types of menudo?
Depending on where you live, you may have heard people refer to their version of menudo as either “chorizo” or “sausage.”
Both names are used interchangeably and refer to the same thing: a seasoned pork variety known for its spiciness.
It comes from the Spanish word “menudillo,” meaning “little end.”
And while this type of sausage isn’t very large, it packs quite the punch.
We recommend making this dish with pork shoulder (aka Boston butt) because it has a rich flavor that will give you all the depth you need.
The meat should be at least 5 pounds (2.3 kg), but if you can afford it, opt for 8 to 10 pounds (3.6 to 4.5 kg).
This way, you can save yourself the hassle of cutting up the pork into smaller pieces.
You can also buy pork menudo pre-cooked in cans or jars, which saves you time.
But you’ll still want to follow the recipe below to ensure that you don’t overcook your meat.
Is menudo good for your stomach?
Menudo has been around for centuries, but its popularity rose during the Mexican Revolution (1810–1921), which was led by Francisco “Pancho” Villa.
The revolution brought about many changes in Mexico, including the introduction of new foods into the country.
Pork menudo became one of those new additions.
Today, it’s still a mainstay of Mexican cuisine.
Pork menudo consists of shredded pork, salt, water, and a variety of seasonings.
You can add tomatoes, green chiles, cilantro, onion, and even hot sauce to give it flavor.
Some people enjoy adding mushrooms, eggs, and other vegetables as well.
But since menudo is usually eaten with tortillas, most recipes include corn flour, either in the form of masa harina or masa de maiz.
You can serve pork menudo with tortillas, rice, or bread.
Many people prefer to dip their tortillas into the pot of simmering pork menudo, while others will ladle out portions of the stew into bowls.
If you want to go fancy, you can top off each bowl with slices of avocado and/or queso fresco.
Common Mistakes When Cooking Pork Menudo
There are several common mistakes that people make when they cook pork menudo.
First, they don’t always follow the recipe instructions correctly.
For example, they might add too much water or not enough salt, or they might forget to add some of the optional ingredients like tomatoes, chiles, or onions.
A second mistake is overcooking the pork.
While it’s important to allow the pork to become tender before serving, it’s equally important to avoid overcooking it.
And finally, making sure that all of the ingredients are added at once is essential, because the meat won’t absorb any seasoning if you wait to add it later.
What is the chewy stuff in menudo?
Well, first things first – this isn’t a type of rice. Instead, the chewy texture comes from the long strands of collagen (or connective tissue) that run through all of the pork used to make menudo.
When you roast the pork pieces, these proteins break down and become gelatinous and stringy.
That’s why this dish is so chewy – it has lots of collagen!
- 1 deep skillet
- 1 tablespoon oil
- 4 garlic minced, large cloves
- 6 yellow onions chopped, large
- 3 tablespoons tomato paste
- 2 tablespoons paprika
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- 1 teaspoon oregano
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon black pepper
- 5 pounds pork shoulder cubed
- 4 cups water
- ¼ cup white vinegar
- 1 bay leaf
- ¾ cup canned diced tomatoes
- 1 cup corn kernels
- 1 bunch scallions sliced
- To start off, heat up a deep skillet over medium heat and pour in the oil.
- Once the oil is hot, sauté the garlic and onion for about five minutes, until they begin to turn translucent.
- Add the rest of the ingredients except the tomatoes and corn, and season with the salt and pepper.
- Cook on low heat for 30 minutes.
- Then, increase the heat to high, and add the tomatoes and corn.
- Continue to cook until the meat is tender and the sauce has thickened, approximately 40-50 minutes.
- Remove the bay leaf before serving.