Caldito de Cabrito Ahumadoro (Smoked Goat Green Chile Stew)
Whenever the Green Chile crop would come ripe in New Mexico, you could count on my mom making her Caldito, or “little stew”.
Perhaps the most basic of New Mexican dishes, it involves first and foremost, Green Chile, Potatoes, Garlic, Pork, water and salt.
She would brown a pound of ground pork in minced garlic and a little flour to make a roux, then add green chiles, potatoes and water into the pot and simmer that bad boy until the whole house smelled of green chile porky goodness.
Well, since we smoke as a matter of principle here, and commit culinary heresy at the drop of a hat, here is my take on Moms old classic:
4# goat meat, chunked and smoked
3-4# Yukon Gold Potatoes, cubed and browned in a fry pan
6 cloved of garlic, minced
¾ cup chopped, roasted Green Chiles from New Mexico ( see chile note below)
2 quarts chicken stock
Mauldon salt to finish
I have always been fond of Goat or Kid (cabrito), and conveniently enough, a Middle Eastern grocery with a Halal butcher moved into my neighborhood less than a mile away. They have ridiculously fresh goat meat there, and you can order a kid of any size with enough advanced notice. They also have discount, misc. goat chunks for sale which worked great for my purposes.
I bought about 4 # of chunks, and tossed them into a foil pan, and smoked them with pecan and mesquite for 3-4 hours.
while they were in the home stretch, I cubed and fried 3 # of Yukon Gold potatoes in until crisp, then flipped them to brown the other side. I crushed and minced about ½ a bulb of garlic and reserved.
A note on NM Green Chile. God knows what heat level you get when you buy a sack. The only way to test it is to dive after roasting and it’s pure Russian roulette. Sometimes a 40# sack wont last a month because they are so mild, but this year, the sack of ”medium” so kindly sent to me by my brother in law Steve, really needs a skull and cross bones on it. Consequently, I used very little in this recipe and it still had people crying.
So with that warning, I ended up with about 2/3-3/4 cup of diced, roasted green chile from Chimayo, north of Santa Fe. Also reserved.
Pulled the goat out of the smoker and put it directly into a big crock pot, bones and all, followed by the pre fried spuds, garlic, chopped green chile, and chicken stock. Cooked it all night on low and woke up to that piquant, light motor oil aroma of smoked goat. Goat is so lean, that you may not need to cool it to separate fat, but I like to refrigerate for a few hours after cooking to help meld the flavors.
After it cools, get after that pot and debone the meat. BE CAREFUL WITH THIS STEP! Young Goats have sharp little bones that need to be evicted from your stew. Once its clear of bones, finish with a little Mauldon Salt if needed, stir together in the pot and serve up only to derserving individuals who are pure of heart. Make sure they have a buttered flour tortilla to aid them in their quest to the bottom of the bowl.
The next morning, found me cracking soft boiled eggs into my bowl of stew…SO good!
This one is really easy, and it wowed a room full of teen and college aged kids and their folks watching ball.
Thanks for looking.
Edited by SmokeyDokey - 7/30/15 at 9:21am