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Homemade Chorizo

Ease of Preparation: Moderate

Preparation Time: 30 min
chill at least 24 hrs

Cook Time: 3 hrs

Servings: makes 2 lbs.

Recipe By: Jacqueline Higuera McMahan

From:  California Rancho Cooking
Used with permission of Sasquatch Books

Other Main Dishes
Other Mexican
Other Grilled Food
Other Meat

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Homemade Chorizo

2 pounds boneless pork with some fat
4 cloves garlic, minced
3 teaspoons dried oregano
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 teaspoons cumin seed, crushed very fine
1 tablespoon sea salt
4 to 6 tablespoons powdered red chile, preferably New Mexican, Californian, or mixed or 4 to 6 tablespoons powdered red chile and pureéd chipotle en adobo
1 to 2 teaspoons chile seeds, reserved from whole chiles (optional)
1/4 cup paprika
1/2 cup red wine vinegar or cider vinegar
2 tablespoons port wine
Cut the pork into small pieces and grind them in a food processor with short pulses so as not to purée them. Transfer to a bowl.

Combine the garlic, oregano, pepper, cumin, salt, chile powder (if you like spiciness, use the larger amount of chile), chile seeds, paprika, vinegar, and port for a traditional touch.

Add the spice mixture to ground pork, working it in with your hands until it is well colored. As Maria Torres Yzabal says in the traditional Sonoran recipe, "Add enough paprika that your hands are stained red." Otherwise, the chorizo will cook up grayish. Do a quick taste test by frying a little patty of chorizo to see if the seasonings are to your taste. Remember that the flavors will intensify as the chorizo stands. Let the chorizo mellow in a covered glass bowl in the refrigerator for at least 24 hours. It freezes well, in small packages.

Chef Suggestions
You can use already ground unseasoned pork, which supermarkets have available, in a pinch. It is not quite the same, but it is very good. This way you can quickly make up a homemade batch of chorizo, which is much better than the store-bought.

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