Red Turkey Posole

December 3, 2023

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Red Turkey Posole

This year’s Lotus Farms turkey prompted me to make a red chile posole during Thanksgiving week. I adapted a red chicken pozole recipe from Steve Sando’s The Rancho Gordo Pozole Book, making the red chile paste a couple of weeks ahead and freezing it until time to make the posole. I used Rancho Gordo white corn posole/hominy. I like the size of the Rancho Gordo kernels, larger than some varieties, and its texture, denser than some.

A day ahead of putting the posole together, I spatchcocked the seven and a half pound turkey and roasted it. Also a day ahead, I made stock from the back of the turkey. In putting the posole together the next day, I played with the amount of stock and chile paste and hominy to end up with enough posole for about six servings. 

The Recipe


For the meat and stock

Both thighs and legs and half the breast of a roasted seven and a half pound turkey, deboned

As much stock from simmering the turkey back with aromatics such as onion, garlic, bay leaves, and salt and pepper as you like

Ingredients for red chile paste

  • 2 ancho chiles, wiped clean with a moist towel
  • 3 guajillo chiles, wiped clean with a moist towel
  • ½ of an onion, chopped
  • 6 garlic cloves, smashed and peeled
  • 2 tablespoons oil or lard


Preparation for the chile paste

  1. Cut chiles in half; discard seeds and stems. In a small saucepan, warm 2 cups of water over medium-low heat; turn off heat when the water is hot Meanwhile, warm a dry comal or skillet over medium heat; toast the chiles quickly, taking care not to let the chiles burn. Soak the toasted chiles in the pan of warm water for 15 minutes. Drain chiles, reserving the soaking liquid.
  2. In a blender, combine the chiles, onion, garlic, and enough of the strained chile-soaking liquid to allow the blender blades to move. Blend well, scraping down the paste as needed, Use a wooden spoon to push the mixture through a fine-mesh sieve into a bowl, discarding skins and seeds.
  3. In a large pot over medium heat, warm the oil until hot, 2 to 3 minutes. Add the chile paste and stir immediately. Reduce heat to medium-law; cook, stirring frequently, for 5 to 10 minutes. Taste and adjust seasoning as desired.

Putting the posole together

  1. Combine the chile paste, meat, and drained, cooked posole.  Slowly add enough of the stock to make a soupy stew, stirring frequently. 
  2. Cook over medium heat until all of the ingredients are hot. Ladle into bowls and serve with whatever garnishes you like. My favorite garnishes are thinly sliced radishes, finely chopped white onion, thin ribbons of cabbage, and juice from quartered limes.


    This locally inspired recipe is brought to you by Pam Walker. Pam is an avid home cook, writer, and local farm and food activist who is also a board member of the Santa Fe Farmers’ Market Institute. Thank you, Pam, for helping inspire us to use locally sourced ingredients!