Last month when my mom and dad were in town, they invited my husband and I over for lunch. Originally my mom was planning on making her delicious caldo de pollo, but the day before I got a text from my dad asking if I instead wanted salsa de carne frita. I believe my answer was "YESSS!!!". The next day when I woke up, my first though was "OMG, today I'm having salsa de carne frita." I am not exaggerating when I say I had four servings that day (blame it on the pregnancy). In the four years of knowing each other, I don't think my husband had ever see me devour a dish like that. To say that I love this dish, is an understatement. Even this time around when I tested the recipe with my girlfriend Paola, we both (almost) finished the entire pot
I called my mom to ask her for the recipe a couple of weeks ago, and I finally got to making my own version at home. I say my version because even though I followed her recipe step by step, it will never be as good as my moms. I hope all of you enjoy and share it with your families. It is really very easy and a super inexpensive meal to make. I visited two stores to find all the ingredients, El Super and Felimex in Highland Park (shout out to my new hood NELA!) and spent a total of $17.06. The trick to this dish is browning the meat down to its core, and this takes a bit of patience. It took about 40 minutes of stirring and waiting, but the end result was worth every second. Also don't forget the frijolitos, tortillas and cheese. They were meant for each other!
2 lbs pork spare ribs (the fattier, the better) cut in 3 inch strips
8 garlic cloves, smashed
1/4 small onion
1 lb tomatillo milpero
4 small tomatoes, cut in fours
4 chiles morita
Place the ribs in a stockpot, and cover with water, about 4 cups, bring to a boil over medium-high heat. When the water begins to boil, skim all brown foam off with a fine strainer. Discard the foam.
When the water no longer has any foam, add the garlic and onion. Allow the ribs to boil for 5 more minutes and add salt, about 1 tablespoon. Lower heat and allow simmering for 20 minutes. Remove 1 cup of liquid and reserve. Continue to cook over high heat and stir to combine the garlic flavor onto the ribs, until all the liquid has evaporated and the ribs are thoroughly browned on each side. Remove the ribs piece by piece and place on a separate dish. Do not discard the pot, as you will be using it again.
In a separate pot, boil the tomatillos and tomatoes with 3/4 cup of water, stirring occasionally, and cover for 10-12 minutes. Place the chiles morita on a comal, or griddle until toasted and fragrant and add them to the tomato pot, until soften. Once the chiles are soft, place the chiles and tomatoes in a blender and blend until finely pureed.
Remove any excess grease from the pot you used to brown the pork (if necessary), but leave just enough to fry your sauce, about 1 tablespoon. Do not remove any brown bits, this will allow for a deeper flavor of the sauce. Add the tomato puree, cup of liquid you reserved plus 1/4 cup of extra water to the pot. Allow cooking for 5 more minutes under low heat. Add the ribs to the sauce and allow simmering for 5 more minutes. Serve in a bowl with warm tortillas on the side. Pairs great with a bowl of black beans.