Mexican Pork Chorizo Sausage
Mexican chorizo is not like the Portuguese chorizo you find in a lot of markets. Mexican chorizo is a sausage unto itself. You won't find anything quite like it anywhere else in the world. It is all at once rich with the fragrance of herbs and spices, piquant from the deep red guajillo chilies, and tangy from the vinegar.
In my opinion it is this sausage that captures the character and embodies the spirit of Mexican cuisine.
Important: If this is your first experience with grinding meat, please take a look at my Meat Grinding Page. It explains in detail, with pictures, about grinding meat.
Pork chorizo is comfort food to nourish the soul. The combination of spiciness and tanginess really wakes up your senses.
Like any good cook, the first thing I do is get my meez (mise en place) ready.
Processing or grinding the pork for the sausage. See how nicely the meat and fat are combined, and the fat is still solid. That is important.
Again, if this is your first time grinding meat I urge you to read my Meat Grinding page.
Here, the chilies are pureed and the spices are finely ground together. Everything is ready for the next step, mixing the chorizo sausage.
You combine the ground pork with the pureed chilies and the ground spices. Next, you mix it all together, gently, using your hands.
The ground pork, chilies, and spices are thoroughly mixed together, you're almost done.
Cook off a small bit and taste it so that you can adjust the seasoning, if you need to.
The final steps, wrapping the chorizo to cure. When you wrap it in film, make certain to double wrap the sausage.
An Authentic Pork Chorizo Recipe From Mexico
Yield: About 4 pounds / 1.8 kg
- Prep Time: 45 minutes
- Meat grinder or grinder attachment
- Spice grinder or molcajete
- 3 ounces / 85 grams, about 15 Guajillo Chilies, stemmed and seeded
- 3/4 cup / 170 grams / 177 ml cider vinegar
- 4 large cloves garlic, minced
- 2 pounds / 907 grams pork shoulder, coarsely ground
- 8 ounces / 227 grams pork fat, coarsely ground
- 2 tbsp / 10 grams / cumin, toasted
- 2 tsp / 5 grams coriander
- 1/8 tsp / 1/2 gram ground cloves
- 2 bay leaves
- 1/2 tsp / 1/2 gram cinnamon
- 1 tablespoon / 2 grams / 0.1 oz dried oregano
- 1/2 teaspoon / 1/2 gram dried thyme
- 2 teaspoons / 10 grams / .35 oz kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon / 2 grams / .1 oz freshly ground black pepper
- 1/8 teaspoon / 1/2 gram ground allspice
- 3 tbsp / 24 grams / .85 oz ancho chile powder
- 1 tbsp / 10 grams / .35 oz smoked paprika
- 1 ounce / 30 ml tequila blanco
- Soak the chiles in a bowl of boiling water to cover until soft, about 15 minutes. Drain the chiles, reserving the soaking water. Tear or chop the chilies into smaller pieces, and return to the bowl.
- Add the vinegar and marinate for 45 minutes, stirring from time to time. Transfer the chilies and vinegar to a blender and process until smooth, adding a bit more vinegar, or some of the soaking water, only if needed to release the blades. Once the chilies are pureed you can toss the soaking water.
- Cut the pork and pork fat into 1 inch / 2.5 cm cubes. In a large mixing bowl, grind the meat and the fat together into a coarse grind, using the large grinder plate. Process until all the meat has been ground.
- Add the garlic to the bowl and toss until well mixed. Add the pureed chilies to the sausage mixture.
- Next combine the cumin, coriander, cloves, bay leaves, cinnamon, oregano, thyme, salt, pepper, allspice, ginger, ancho chile powder, and paprika in a spice mill and grind until it is a fine powder, you may need to grind it in batches.
- Add the spice mixture to the meat along with the tequila. Thoroughly, but gently, work the mixture together with your hands.
- Fry a spoonful in a small skillet until thoroughly cooked, taste, and add more salt if needed.
- Divide the mixture into equal parts, about a pound each. Transfer each batch to film and roll tightly into logs. Refrigerate for at least 72 hours.
- Alternatively, Cover the bowl tightly and cure in the refrigerator for at least 3 days, occasionally turning the mixture so the flavors are well blended. At this point, the chorizo can be divided into smaller batches, or used immediately. It can be frozen for up to 3 months.
Pork chorizo, ready for curing
- This chorizo recipe calls for coarse ground pork shoulder and pork fat. If you have a butcher shop that you like they can grind the pork and fat for you. Explain that you want it coarse ground not fine ground.
- While you can eat the sausage immediately, it really needs the time to cure. The flavors marry and the subtle notes pop out after it is cured, don't skip that step.