Cecina Enchilada (Adobo Marinated Pork Cutlets)
Ancho (Ahn-cho) Chile (Capsicum Annum) means Wide Chile Pepper. This chile ranges from 3 – 4 on a heat scale of 1 to 10. An Ancho is the dried form of a Poblano Pepper and often is mislabeled as a Pasilla or Mulato Pepper. Anchos have sweet fruity flavor with hints of cherry, prune, and fig. Anchos, combined with the Pasilla and Guajillo, form the Holy Trinity of chiles used to prepare the traditional mole sauces. Scoville heat units are 1,000 to 3,000.
Anchos are great in salsa, soups, enchilada and any sauce needing mild heat and chile flavor. Chopped, pureed or ground, they can be added directly to your recipes.
4 ounces dried ancho chiles
2 whole cloves
2 whole allspice berries
1/2 tablespoon whole cumin seed
1/2 tablespoon dried Mexican oregano
1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 ounce white vinegar
3 cloves roasted garlic
4 (8-ounce) pork cutlets, pounded to 1/4 inch thick
Makes 4 servings
Clean, seed, and dry-roast chiles on a comal or in cast-iron skillet over medium heat until they are fragrant and slightly toasted, being careful not to burn them. Transfer to a small bowl of hot water and soak until softened, 30 minutes.
On a comal or in a cast-iron skillet over moderate heat, dry-roast the cloves, allspice, cumin, oregano, thyme, and cinnamon, being careful not to burn them.
In a blender, combine the chiles with the roasted spices. Add the vinegar and roasted garlic, and process until smooth, adding water as needed. Season to taste with salt.
Marinate the pork cutlets in the chile paste for at least 8 hours. Grill the pork cutlets and serve immediately with lime, crema fresca, sliced avocado, salsa, and tortillas.