I hope all of you have had your black eye peas by now.
Posole is a New Year's and Chrismas tradition along the border and in New Mexico. While I've had some very nice versions and I've always enjoyed it, a couple of years ago my friend Matt made a batch and served it with all the trimmings so that you made your own bowl "al gusto". The chopped fresh vegetables add significantly to the dish and make the bowl something like a Latin pho. I discovered a whole new enthusiasm. Consequently, each winter requires at least one batch of posole and this New Year's Eve was the time.
Rick Bayless's "Mexico One Plate at a Time" has some good instruction and advice for cooking posole. In my case, I had some left over pig and added some other bits with bones to thicken the broth.
As Bayless notes, you want it to be the consistency of a "soupy stew".
Ready to serve (photo actually shows leftovers): bowl of posole with thinly sliced cabbage, radishes, minced fresh jalapeno, minced onion, grated cheese, lime wedges and chopped cilantro. Add any or all to taste. Personally, crunchy cabbage and the earthy notes lent by the radish are absolutely required, any of the other sides might get added or not.
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