Last Updated on October 11, 2023 by My Back Kitchen
Prepare your taste buds for a savory adventure as we delve into the world of Calabacita con Carne de Puerco, a delightful Mexican dish that combines tender pork with the natural sweetness of zucchini and an array of aromatic spices. This hearty and comforting stew showcases the vibrant flavors and ingredients of Mexican cuisine, bringing together succulent pork, tender zucchini, and a medley of seasonings that will transport you to the heart of Mexico. In this blog post, we will explore the origins, ingredients, and preparation of Calabacita con Carne de Puerco, uncovering the secrets behind this soul-warming delicacy.
Calabacita con Carne de Puerco holds a special place in Mexican cuisine, particularly in the regions where squash (calabacita) and pork (carne de puerco) are abundant. This dish reflects the cultural heritage and traditional cooking methods of Mexico, celebrating the use of locally sourced ingredients and time-honored culinary techniques.
The star of the dish, tender chunks of pork shoulder or pork loin add richness and depth of flavor to the stew. The pork is typically browned before being simmered, allowing the meat to develop a caramelized crust and infuse the stew with its savory goodness.
The calabacita (zucchini) takes center stage, contributing a delicate sweetness and a satisfying texture to the dish. Choose fresh zucchini that is firm and vibrant in color. You can slice it into rounds, cubes, or any desired shape.
A combination of aromatics, such as onions and garlic form the flavor base of the dish. Additional seasonings like freshly ground black pepper and jalapeno lend a complex and aromatic profile to the stew. Tomatoes also play a vital role in providing a rich and tangy backdrop to the dish.
The fresh kernals of corn in this dish add a hint of sweetness and texture that compliments the tenderness of the calabacita.
This one pot meal is quick to pull together any day of the week. For a change, use chicken thighs or omit the protein all together for a vegetarian option. Serve with warm corn or flour tortillas and enjoy!
Calabacita con Carne de Puerco
- 3 lb. pork roast cut into bite size pieces (can substitute boneless skinless chicken thighs)
- 1 medium white or yellow onion diced
- 5 roma tomatoes blended to puree
- 1 whole jalapeno
- 2 cloves fresh garlic minced (or 1/2 tsp. garlic powder)
- 1/8 tsp. pepper
- 2 Tbsp. vegetable or canola oil
- 3 calabasita squash cut into half moons
- 1 cup frozen corn or more to taste
- Season pork with salt and pepper. Set aside.
- Heat a Dutch oven or large size pot oven over medium-high heat.
- Add oil. When oil begins to shimmer and is slightly smoking, add pork to pan cooking in batches to not overcrowd the pan. Let sit on one side for a couple of minutes until well browned, flip, and repeat. Note: Browned equals flavors, so make sure your meat is well browned before moving to the next step. As meat is browned, set aside in bowl until done cooking all batches.
- In the same saucepan, add back in all browned meat. Add chopped onions and jalapeno and cook until translucent. Add garlic and stir to combine.
- Add the calabasita squash and cook for 2 minutes to lightly brown. Add blended tomato and frozen corn.
- Season with 1/4 tsp. salt and add pepper. Lower heat to simmer and cover. Cook for 30 minutes. Uncover, taste broth and add additional salt to taste. Serve and enjoy!
Calabacita con Carne de Puerco is a traditional Mexican dish made with tender pieces of pork cooked with zucchini, tomatoes, and various seasonings. It’s known for its rich and savory flavor.
To prepare this dish, you’ll typically need pork, zucchini, fresh tomatoes, onions, and spices like garlic. The ingredients are simmered together to create a flavorful, comforting stew.
You can use various types of zucchini for this dish, but Mexican gray zucchini is preferred due to its flavor and texture. Green zucchini or yellow squash can also be used as a substitute.
Yes, chicken can be used in place of pork with the same cooking steps being used. We recommend chicken thighs if doing so as they stay moist throughout the cooking process. You can create a vegetarian or vegan version of this dish by substituting the pork with plant-based proteins or leaving it out completely and increasing the amount of zucchini and corn.