Making Cachupa with Grandma!

A modern man needs to know how to cook!

If you are from a different country, you need to learn how to make a traditional dish! I'm from Cape Verde so I learned how to make Cachupa! It was a great way to spend some time with my grandma (hi, vovo!) and add a delicious dish to my staple dishes!

First thing first. What is Cachupa?

Cachupa is a slow boiled stew of hominy corn, beans, vegetables, spices and marinated pork. It looks a little something like this!

Let's start from the beginning. Cachupa is made out of love! That means the measurements are loose and we won't be talking cups, tablespoons, etc. We'll be eyeing everything and adjusting based on our personal taste. Don't worry, the dish is very forgiving.

Let's get everything out before we start. We'll need the following ingredients.

  • Hominy Corn. 1/4 - 1/2 bag
  • Pork Shoulder. I use half a pound. You can reduce or add more as needed.
  • Beans. Pick from baby lima, stone and/or kidney. I only use baby lima beans. The amount should be about half the amount of the hominy you're using.
  • Cloves of garlic. 3 crushed
  • Onion. 1 chopped
  • Carrots. 2 peeled and chopped
  • Yuca. 1 roughly cut
  • Collard Greens. Rough cut. Enough to fill a cooking bowl.
  • Seasoning. Olive oil, salt, crushed red pepper, bay leaf, sazon

You'll need 2 pots: one for beans, one for meat.

Cachupa in 6 easy steps

Step 1 - Broil hominy

Broil half a pot of water with a bay leaf, 3 crushed garlic, some olive oil and hominy.

Broil Hominy

Step 2 - Cook pork

Cut the pork into small pieces and season with some salt, crushed red pepper, bay leaf, 2 cloves of crushed garlic and some onion. We'll add a pack of sazon for coloring, oil olive and cook it over medium heat.

Cook Pork

After the meat has color to it, add just enough water or beer to cover the meat. Usually, I add crushed red pepper as well for flavoring. The water/beer keeps the meat tender.

Step 3 - Prep the veggies

Now we can rough chop some collard greens. Cut up our yuca into small pieces and chop our carrots. Let's set aside for now.

Prep veggies

Step 4 - Check the hominy

We want to make sure we are aware of the level of water in our pot. Once it gets low we can fill it half way with more water. Allow the water to boil again and add the lima beans. The lima beans sink when they start cooking. Check them by squeezing one to see if it is soft enough for you.

Check Hominy

Step 5 - Add collard greens

Add the collard greens to the pork. Once the stalks are soft we can throw in the yuca and carrots. Allow it to cook until it is soft. When it is soft, dump this pot into the hominy pot (assuming the lima beans are cooked).

Add collard greens

Step 6 - Add some good fat!

Good fats aren't bad for you so don't skip this! You need healthy fats. Fry half an onion in some olive oil. Once it starts to brown pour it over the Cachupa.

Add fat

Now just let it simmer!

This depends on your preferrence as well. Some people like it soupy and others like it drier. Adjust the time you allow it to simmer accordingly. I'd say roughly 30 minutes for a less liquidy cachupa!