We live in a quite remote area in the mountains. When you live out here, it’s important to know and to help your neighbors as you never know when you might need to call on them to help you. So we do that. We moved into this area about 6 years ago. I ride horses, so I made friends with some other riders and we meet up when we can to go riding. We also met the neighbors of our neighbors and were warmly welcomed into a circle of kind friends. Now we get together to celebrate birthdays and holidays, to play cards and socialize. Of course, there is nearly always food involved.
We sometimes meet at one of the two restaurants in our tiny town, but often we decide on a theme meal or potluck. The January birthdays were celebrated tonight with a Mexican theme decided by the birthday celebrant last weekend while horseback riding. I was elected to bring a main dish and decided on Pork Chile Verde. Others were elected to bring, rice, salad, another Mexican dish, and of course the birthday cake.
Since I had another full day of horse activities and chores planned along with helping my husband clean our rental home I decided to utilize my trusty slow cooker for the second time this week. It might seem like a cop-out to some, but for a busy woman who loves good food, it’s truly a Godsend.
The pork shoulder (bone in) was thawed in the refrigerator waiting. After I finished my work in the rental cabin, I ran back into the kitchen and chopped and onion, 3 jalapeno peppers, and two Anaheim peppers. I seared the whole pork shoulder in olive oil while I did the dishes from last night, that I was too lazy to wash. I added one can whole, peeled (chopped) tomatoes and a can of chicken broth and set the cooker on high. I seasoned with salt, pepper, 2 cloves of garlic chopped, dark chili powder and some cayenne pepper (just a dash), some Mexican oregano and a few blops of hot pepper sauce and left. I returned around 1 pm and reduced the setting to low and left to go ride my horse.
When I returned at 4 pm the house smelled like I imagine Heaven might. I removed the bone, took two forks and shredded the tender pork, making sure it was all immersed in the simmering liquid. I stirred it all up and covered it. It was perfectly cooked when I arrived down the road and complemented by the delicious sides and the other dishes made by my neighbors.
One of our friends is not a cook, so she was in charge of the birthday cake. She brought a small white layer cake and a fudge bomb cake covered with yellow coconut shred. This was immediately dubbed the “boob cake” due to its resemblance to a certain body part complete with wrinkled cherry on top.This birthday party will be memorable because of the great football game that was enjoyed, the incredible food, the great company, the new infant that attended, and yes, for the boob cake.