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A warm stew to chase the chill away

by Brandon Williams
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As the mercury dips and snow and ice making conditions outside less inviting, a warm and welcoming meal inside can be just what the doctor ordered.

This recipe for “Jalapeño Pork Stew With Pickled Onions” from “Real Simple Dinner Tonight: Done!” (Time Home Entertainment) by the editors of Real Simple is tailor-made for a cold day. This hearty dish will warm anyone up, both from the heat of the stew itself and the spicy kick of the jalapeños.

Jalapeño Pork Stew With Pickled Onions

Serves 8

4 tablespoons olive oil

5 pounds boneless pork shoulder or butt, trimmed and cut into 2-inch pieces

2 tablespoons ground cumin

Kosher salt and black pepper

3 tablespoons all-purpose flour

1 cup fresh orange juice

1 14.5-ounce can diced tomatoes, drained

12 cloves garlic

1 to 2 jalapeño peppers, seeded and sliced

1 large red onion, thinly sliced

1/4 cup red wine vinegar

1 1-pound package frozen cut okra

11/2 cups grits

Heat oven to 325 F. Heat 2 tablespoons of the oil in a large ovenproof pot or Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Season the pork with the cumin, 11/2 teaspoons salt and 1/2 teaspoon black pepper. In batches, cook the pork until browned, turning occasionally, 6 to 8 minutes; transfer to a plate.

Add the flour and the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil to the pot and cook, stirring for 1 minute. Add the orange juice, tomatoes, garlic, jalapeños, and 4 cups water and bring to a boil. Return the pork to the pot, cover, transfer to oven, and cook until the pork is tender, 21/2 to 3 hours.

Meanwhile, in a small bowl, toss the onion with the vinegar, 1/2 cup water, and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Let sit, tossing occasionally, for at least 30 minutes (and up to 4 hours).

Skim off and discard any fat from the stew. Add the okra. Cover the pot, return it to the oven, and cook until the okra is tender, about 15 minutes. If the stew is too thin, place the pot on the stove and simmer, uncovered, until thickened, 5 to 10 minutes more.

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