Six chefs show off posole recipes in Bloomfield

Hannah Grover
hgrover@daily-times.com

BLOOMFIELD — As the mornings are getting colder, posole offers a way for people to warm up.

John Gomez serves up his dad's recipe for red chile pork posole during the Bloomfield Boys & Girls Clubs' posole cook-off Saturday at Salmon Park in Bloomfield.

Posole is a traditional stew that uses hominy, meat and seasonings. Six local chefs showed off their own recipe or family recipe today at Salmon Park during a cook-off that raised money for the Boys & Girls Clubs of Bloomfield.

Three of the six posole dishes were made using red chile and pork, while another chef used pork, pigs feet and beef, along with red chile in her posole. The other two posole recipes included green chile and chicken.

Sadie Smith-McDaniel, the board president for the Bloomfield Boys & Girls Clubs, came up with the idea for a posole cook-off.

"I'm from Louisiana, and we do gumbo cook-offs a lot," she said.

Heath, left, Michelle and C.J. Barker, 16, try Olivia Montoya's pork and beef posole during the Bloomfield Boys & Girls Clubs posole cook-off Saturday at Salmon Park in Bloomfield.

Smith-McDaniel and the rest of the board chose to feature one of New Mexico's signature dishes for their event.

"I told her (the posole cook-off idea) was just fantastic because nobody else does it," said Cynthia Atencio, the secretary of the organization.

Atencio has been making posole for decades and entered her recipe into the contest.

"I think my blend of chiles makes mine unique," she said.

Sarah Lorette, who was one of the judges, said each chef had delicious chile that was very different. She commented that their traditions of serving chile were also very different. For example, Olivia Montoya served her posole with frybread, while John Gomez provided crackers.

Smith-McDaniel said the posole cook-off is a good way for people to sample a large variety of styles.

A visitor tries Olivia Montoya's pork and beef posole during the Bloomfield Boys & Girls Clubs posole cook-off Saturday at Salmon Park in Bloomfield.

She and Lorette said the chefs gave a large amount of posole to each person, and people could easily get a full meal from the event.

"It's posole season," Lorette added.

Hannah Grover covers government for The Daily Times. She can be reached at 505-564-4652.