Dehydrating 101: Ski’s Pork Stew
- 2 pounds ground pork
- 1 large onion, minced fine (I used a Walla Walla Sweet)
- 14 tomatillos, peeled, washed, stems removed, and cut up
- 6 roma tomatoes, cut up
- 1 small can El Pato mild tomato sauce
- 1 head garlic, minced fine
- 2 Tbsp ground cumin
- 1/3 cup oregano leaf
- 1½ tsp salt
- 1 small jalapeno pepper, seeds removed and minced fine
- ½ tsp chili powder
- ½ tsp paprika
- ½ tsp thyme
- ½ tsp black pepper
- olive oil
In a dry pan, heat the cumin a bit to bring out full flavor. do not scorch. Remove from pan and set aside. Brown the ground pork in a pot. Remove and drain on paper towels. For purposes of dehydrating, I cooked the pork until it was quite done.
In a little oil, saute the onion, garlic and add the herbs and spices.
I ground all the herbs, salt, and pepper into a powder with a mortar and pestle to bring out the flavors.
Add the tomatillos, tomatoes, jalapeños, and tomato sauce. Add water to the top of the pot.
I had to split this batch in half and use two pots.
Simmered for five hours, until reduced to a thick consistency:
Spread out on parchment paper lined drying trays:
Dried for fourteen hours at 135° F:
One measuring cup of stew yielded just over ¾ cup dry:
Reconstituted with 1/2 cup boiling water:
Served over Basmati rice:
I let the dry mix reconstitute in boiling water in a covered bowl for five minutes.
The texture of the meat was still a bit… dry? not rubbery, but not soft either.
I don’t believe I overcooked the pork at first, because we had it for supper last night and it was fine. I think if I had let it stand for ten minutes instead of five it would have been fine.
My mother suggested I try this over polenta, but that sounds kind of mushy, and corn meal isn’t much nutritional value for the weight.
I think orzo might be a better option than the rice.
That batch was enough for dinner for two of us last night, and I got four full measuring cups plus just shy of a fifth measuring cup of stew, which I used for this test. So I have four bags, which don’t seem to weigh much more than the four bags of spaghetti sauce. In my haste to make sure I had all the stove stuff earlier, I forgot to grab them out of the freezer to check on the triple-beam.
Hope you all enjoyed this – I have another post coming from Ski this week as well!