Growing up in a heavily Portuguese city, I was totally spoiled rotten on gloriously delicious food. Two of my favorite dishes, caçoila (a type of Portuguese pulled pork) and pork alentejana (pork and littlenecks) have many similar ingredients. My mom and I used to out to eat once a month for alentejana, and she would eat my littlenecks, as I’m not much a fan of clams.
I decided to make a pork stew in the crockpot, which freed me up to get some packing done for our most recent trip to our homestead site. I made what could be thought of as a combination of the two dishes. I also had a few bell peppers to use up, so I added them to the pot. I also left the pork in cubes, instead of shredding it, like in pulled pork. No particular reason, except perhaps a bit of laziness on my part.
The result was my husband insisted that I had to write down the recipe for intentional duplication.
- 4-5 potatoes, diced
- 3-4 bell peppers, diced large
- 3 large onions, sliced
- 2 cups of cooking wine or 2 cups of beef stock
- 1 can tomato paste
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 Tbls piri piri sauce, or crushed red pepper sauce (often found in the ethnic section of the grocery store, it’s often in a tall, clear jar)
- 2 tsp paprika
- 2 tsp cinnamon
- 3-4 lbs boneless pork (butt, shoulder, whatever you have on hand), cut into cubes
- Add all ingredients except the pork into the crockpot, with the potatoes on the bottom. Gently stir the tomato paste and spices into the cooking liquid, and set the slow cooker on high.
- About 2 hours in, add meat on top, last. You want the potatoes on the bottom submerged in liquid and cooking the longest to make sure they cook through. Cook for an additional 4 hours on high.
- Test the potatoes for doneness, and serve.
This was absolutely delicious. The only thing that both my husband and I agreed would made this even better would have been the addition of chourico. If you cannot find Portuguese chourico, you can substitute chourizo. It’s not the same, but it’s still a decent option for a substitute.