Posts Tagged ‘David Hammond’


February 24, 2011

From David Hammond

Serves (his words) a medium-sized hipster bar

Says David: “The better the pork, the better the pozole. Last year, we ate all of Ermine (our Mulefoot hog), so this year I looked to Wettstein’s for high-quality pig meat to put in my pozole. I like a little tooth in my hominy; if you like yours softer, cook it longer. You will need one 5-gallon pot and one 3-gallon pot for this recipe.”


3 pounds of pork soup bones (knuckles, ribs, neck)
2.5 pounds of pork shoulder
1 bay leaf
5 cloves garlic
2 medium onions
1 carrot
3 pounds hominy
4 tablespoons cal (lye)
9 fresh jalapenos (charred, peeled and chopped)
12 chiles de arbol (crumbled)
2 teaspoons oregano
4 teaspoons cumin
4 tablespoons chili powder
salt to taste


Roast pork bones and meat at 350 degrees for about 45 minutes.

Put bones and meat in the 5-gallon pot filled almost to the top with water. Add bay leaf, 2 garlic cloves, 1 onion and carrot, and put everything in the oven at 200 degrees. After 8-10 hours, fish out all the solids. Pull the meat off the bones and reserve. Reduce the liquid over low heat for about five hours.

Put hominy and cal into the 3-gallon pot and cover with a few inches of water. Bring to a boil for 30 minutes, then turn off heat and let it sit for an hour. Rinse hominy in a colander. Clean out the pot. Then put rinsed hominy back into the cleaned pot, cover with a few inches of water, bring to a boil for 30 minutes and let it sit for an hour. Rinse thoroughly three times.

Add the meat along with jalapenos, chiles de arbol, the other onion, oregano, cumin and chili powder. Simmer everything together until the flavors have married, and it looks good enough to eat (around 90 minutes or so).

David Hammond writes the weekly “Food Detective” column in the Chicago Sun-Times and the weekly “Omnivorous in Oak Park” column for the Wednesday Journal. He is a regular contributor of food-related segments to Chicago Public Radio (91.5FM), and he is a founder/moderator of, the Chicago-based culinary chat site.


Mulefoot Pozole 2.0

March 30, 2010

From David Hammond

Serves ?

[Ed: David whipped up a batch of this rich pozole for us last year. This year’s edition is tweaked a bit, but stars the “last scraps” of the very same pig, the noble Ermine. Mulefoot hog (a heritage breed) yields excellent pork,notes David. “You won’t find it at the big supermarkets, so I’d recommend using any fatty piece of pork, like a shoulder chop. This isn’t fancy soup; whatever pork you got is good. Pozole is a traditional soup, and there are no doubt hundreds of variations. Mine is subject to change pending availability of ingredients; measurements are approximate.”]


2 pounds shoulder chop
1 ½ pounds dry hominy (for fun, use different kinds; this time around, I used red kernel and mote)
2 tablespoons chili powder
4 arbol chiles (take out seeds and crumble this and other chiles)
2 pasilla chiles
2 ancho chiles
2 onions, diced
6 garlic cloves, diced
2 teaspoons oregano
2 teaspoons cumin
water (fill to rim of big pot, maybe 2 gallons)
salt to taste


Bake meat at 350 for about 40 minutes, then cut into small chunks. Put everything into the big pot and set the oven to 180 degrees; cook the pot about 6-7 hours. Remove bones before serving (or not).

Week 12

March 25, 2010

… aka the Week in Which I Get Other People to Do the Work for Me.

Our soup cooks this week came to us from the ranks of LTH Forum — “the Chicago-based culinary chat site.” LTH’er Sharon Bautista organized a mighty crew of eight, who came bearing crocks and coolers loaded with seven fantastic soups, not to mention premade signage, ladles, paper towels, cornbread, baguettes, and I don’t even remember what all else.

In fact, this group is so organized that most of their recipes are already up on the LTH thread dedicated to Soup and Bread, along with photos and lots of commentary. The thread, in which the participants swap tips and jibes, and try to figure out what this whole Soup and Bread thing is about, makes for fun reading — and, honestly, I’m not sure what all else I can add. But I will be reposting the recipes over here as time permits. In the meantime, here are some photos, and a few notes of my own.

Here’s most of the crew, including — from the far right, Sharon, David Hammond, Steve Zaransky, and Gary Wiviott. Unfortunately, I didn’t quite get the names of the ladies to the left, though I’m pretty sure the one farthest left is Wendy Dilliard. (Last name? Anyone?)

The soups were a terrifically diverse bunch, from Wendy’s vegan curried squash and red lentil soup (pictured up top) to Gary’s kneifla, a beef soup with drop dumplings made from his mother-in-law’s recipe.

We also had (in honor of the week’s historic act of Congress) a take on the storied Senate Soup fron LTH denizen “mbh” Maribeth Heeran (Again, still trying to track down everyone’s proper names … ) and David Hammond’s encore rendition of last year’s mulefoot pozole.

Here, Hammond and Steve Zaransky discuss proper transportation techniques for hot pots of soup. Or, maybe they’re just shooting the breeze  — heck if I know. But more than one LTH’er arrived with a piping pot of soup wrapped in hot towels and snugged into a cooler, as above. If anyone’s struggling with their own soup transportation issues, this did seem a quite effective solution.

The quarter’s over at Illinois Institute of Art, so no more experimental challah or addictive cheese bread from Chef Kraus’s students. But our friends at La Farine continue to supply us with starches. This, above, I believe is a ciabatta, shaped into lovely, branchlike form and dusted with pepper, poppy, paprika (?) and I’m not sure what all else. And Kim Soss brought hamentashen!

And, of course, the money: Thanks to your generosity, we raised a tidy $297 for the food pantry at the Howard Area Community Center. Way to go team!

Lastly, in other news of the you-do-it-so-I-don’t-have-to variety, earlier this season Mike Sula brought *two* soups to Soup and Bread; one, a tasty mushroom-sauerkraut, is posted here. The other we kept on the DL. Until today. Behold, the recipe for Asian Carp Hot-and-Sour Soup. I’ll just second what Mike says in his post: It tasted better than it looked.

More soon, including the lineup for next week, including a very special surprise guest, whose contribution is, I’m pretty sure, a Soup and Bread first. Just don’t start talking to him about fruit.

Week 11

March 19, 2010

I’ve been trying really hard not to read anything into the fact that Paul Kahan made soup for us on the same day that Alex Chilton died. Because despite that sad, freaky coincidence, it was a night of Big Stars.

Erm, did I mention that PAUL KAHAN MADE SOUP THIS WEEK?

I was a little worried that between Kahan, the gorgeous weather, and the annual holiday of the green plastic hats, we would be mobbed. So I got to the bar superearly to make sure everything was set up with time to spare. (Big ups to surprise assistant Derek Erdman, who apparently didn’t have anything to do at 4 PM besides haul folding chairs around the Hideout. Thanks Derek!)

And then — whether thanks to foresight, or the fact that it was quite possibly just almost too warm for soup, or who knows what — chaos did not ensue. Sure, it was busy, but manageable-busy. Pleasant, bustlin’, soup-lovin’ busy — and just a great night all around.

That’s Kahan, above, “sexing up” a bowl of his silky yellow split pea and truffle (!) soup with croutons and fresh pea shoots.

And here’s our entire magic soup crew.

On the far left is Susannah Kite Strang, following up last week’s fresh pea soup with a pot of yummy vegetarian minestrone that featured a very generous stuff-to-broth ratio.

Next to her is Immediate Sound Series curator Mitch Cocanig. “Oh, great,” Mitch moaned, after he peered into PK’s soup pot. “You made split pea soup too!?!” But they were both delicious, and totally different — Mitch’s green and rustic, and full of smoky ham goodness thanks to a hock that he “boiled the shit out of” for six hours.

On the other side of Kahan is our very own Sheila Sachs, who spent *days* slaving over a pot of her mother’s shrimp and red pepper cream soup. This was a project that entailed taking the Montrose bus over to the Fish Guy, where she bought ten pounds of fish bones, and then hauling those bones back home and stinking up her house with the stock. The soup itself is made with 8 pounds of shrimp procured from our neighbors at Plitt Seafood, via our other neighbor Dan Blue. Thanks, Dan!

Next to Sheila is Trea Fotidzis, with the much-anticipated Polish dill pickle soup, a Soup and Bread first! Mitch helped with this one, shredding 52 pickles by hand the night before. It was *great.* Very old country and not weird at all. Refreshing, like cucumber soup, but, you know, pickled.

And on the end is Kent Kessler, with a fragrant pot of pork and hominy chili. Hominy, like butternut squash and tortilla soup, is a recurring theme this year. This was *massive* — spicy and rich, and topped with a piquant salsa of onions, jalapeno, and cilantro and a crumble of salty cotija cheese.

Bridging the gap between soup and bread, and St. Patrick’s Day, was another stellar bread pudding, courtesy of Celeste and Devon. Rich and savory,  this one was packed with brussels sprouts and corned beef!

We also had another bagful of baguettes from La Farine, and platters of challah from Chef Kraus’s pastry students at Illinois Institute of Art. Some of their challahs were shaped into traditional braids; others were fancifully blobby. And a few were just downright adorable:

But this little guy proved too tempting for someone, giving rise to the night’s great mystery: Who stole his snout?

Staff members from Inspiration Corporation,  beneficiaries of this week’s donations, turned up with literature and, hurray!, plates of cookies. Inspiration’s probably best known as the organization behind Inspiration Cafe, in Uptown, and the Living Room Cafe, in Woodlawn — both of which provide restaurant quality meals and supportive services, including food-service job training at the associated Cafe Too, to homeless Chicagoans. Thanks to you Soup and Bread raised a tidy $359 toward their efforts. Thanks, everybody!

Next week a team from LTH Forum takes over Soup and Bread. I don’t know exactly what’s on the menu, but I think I heard something about a reprise of last year’s mulefoot pozole, and LTH founder  Gary Wiviott has already sent me his recipe for his mother’s kneifla, or beef soup with drop dumplings. With that much culinary know-how in the house, you know it’s gonna be good.

And, lastly, a reminder: We were slated to wrap this up March 31, but due to overwhelming demand among would-be cooks, we’ve extended Soup and Bread until April 14. Still, that’s just FOUR WEEKS away. Don’t miss out on all the exciting spring soup action!

See you next Wednesday. Recipes coming soon.

Mulefoot Pozole

February 1, 2009


From David Hammond

[Says David: “Mulefoot hog (a heritage breed) yields excellent pork; you won’t find it at the big supermarkets, so I’d recommend using any fatty piece of pork, like a shoulder chop. For my pozole, I used chops, a hambone  and neckbones. This isn’t fancy soup; whatever pork you got is good. 

“Pozole is a traditional soup, and there are no doubt hundreds of variations.  Mine is subject to change pending availability of ingredients; measurements are approximate.”]

1 pound pork
2 tablespoons of oil
2 cups dry hominy
2 tablespoons chili powder
3 jalapenos (charred, skinned and chopped)
6 chiles de arbol (crumbled)
1 onion, diced
2 garlic cloves, diced
1 teaspoon oregano
2 teaspoons cumin
Water (fill to rim of crock pot)
Salt to taste

Cut meat into small chunks; brown the meat and bones (if you got ’em) in the oil; put everything into a crock pot. Fill the crock pot with water. Set for low. Cook about 16 hours or until hominy is soft (stir every so often, if so inclined). Remove bones before serving.

Soupfest 2009

January 30, 2009


mulefoot pozole

So, I hear the all-stars are cooking tonight, right?”

So said an early bird at the bar this Wednesday, and boy, howdy, was he right. Guest chefs Mike, Mike, and David all brought their A-games to the pot. Sula’s kimchi chigae was — once we got it heated up enough — a potent, pungent stew of light pork broth and grandma’s homemade kimchi. Gebert delivered a chickpea — or “hummus” — soup whose humble vegetarian trappings were quickly exposed as fraudulent, as one taste revealed it to be built on a smoky bacon stock, (And, just in case you were still confused, Mike also provided crispy bits of jamon iberico as a topping.) Hammond produced the promised mulefoot pozole (pictured above), a rich and rustic take on the Mexican classic.

But that wasn’t all! We realized early this week that, thanks to a perfect storm of factors, we’d be wise to expect a larger-than-usual crowd. So in addition to rounding up stalwart Swim Cafe for yet another veggie contribution — this time in the form of “Moroccan Soul,” a hearty, spicy pot full of chickpeas, spinach, olives, and I’m not sure what else — I also whipped up an impromptu “stone soup,” and Katie tapped the soup bar at Whole Foods for some quite tasty vegetarian minestrone. Which, you know — not the usual Soup and Bread m.o., but why quibble when people are hungry?

And hungry they were. We were completely out of soup by 7 PM. Apologies to anyone who showed up later and was left to knaw on crusts of bread. I have yet to figure out the perfect algorithm of soup + people, but I know it’s out there. 

This week’s donations: $185. Thanks to one and all.

Recipes coming soon, like later today. These guys are on. The. Ball.

Guest soup chefs, Jan 28

January 23, 2009

Coming up next week we’ve got a three-way soup smackdown, when some of my favorite food writers step up to the crock. On the docket:

Chicago Reader columnist Mike Sula
Peripatetic freelancer David Hammond
Sky Full of Bacon’s Mike Gebert

Because all three of these guys are notorious for their enthusiastic pursuit of carnivorous pleasures — and it would be criminal for anyone to go hungry — we’re also bringing back the delicious vegetarian soup skills of Swim Cafe. Let’s just see if they can top the creamy potato-carrot and Fiesta de la Fiesta of weeks gone by.