Posole in a Clay Casuela

Beef pozole with condiments

Pozole is a classic Mexican comfort food dating back to Pre-Colombian times. The word Pozole comes from the Natualtl word, Pozolli, meaning foamy and refers to a stew made of maize.
Pozolli was believed to have been consumed during sacred ceremonies as offerings. Pre-Colombian pozole did focus on Maize being the ritualistic ingredient, honoring the belief that man was created from masa, ground corn. The large corn kernels, also known as hominy were particularly valued. It is believed in some interpretations of ancient texts that Pozole was eaten during these scared rituals and made with sacrificial human meat. Not the most appetizing of thoughts but it was a brutal time in Pre-Colombian history when Cannibalism was a religious practiced of domination and respect. On a lighter note, if you were originally made out of a piece of corn, wouldn’t eating corn also be a cannibalistic act?

A Codex image of a ancient pozole cooking clay pot!

A Codex image of a ancient pozole cooking clay pot!

This Codex drawing portrays pozolli being cooked or stored in a Pre-Colombian clay pot. Mexico Cooks.

Modern Pozole is traditionally made in many regions of Mexico and the South West US with pork (particularly a pig head), turkey, beef, chicken, seafood or vegetables offering I wide variety of options and regional specialization. Here is one recipe I have experimented with and find offers a very satisfying and delicious pozole. Enjoy!

Ying Yang Grits – Huitlacoche and Cheese Grits

Ying Yang Grits – Blue Corn Huitlacoche and Garlic Cheese Grits

A fun and unusual way to present a traditional cheese grits and introduce the musty indigenous flavor of huitlacoche. Corn fungus and corn grits are a natural compliment. Everyone will wonder what is that unique flavors and how did you get the dark blue color. This dish can add an international philosophical twist as a side dish at Thanksgiving with itsĀ  indigenous corn ingredients.

I like making the grits in a lidded clay pot because I find the moisture seems seems to plump up the grits and cook them slowly to offer a very creamy texture. I used a chamba olla.

You can do a similar dish presentation with Purple and White Mash potatoes too.

Vegetarian friendly.

For vegans you could omit the cheese and butter and have a tasty dish as well.


Please share your favorite recipes and experience cooking with clay cookware from around the world.