Now, I am not going to try and tell you that my version is just like the dish that inspired it. I think you can only hope to achieve that depth of flavor if you're willing to get up at 1 a.m. to cook bubbling cazuelas of the stuff every single day. And it probably doesn't hurt to have a Mexican mother, grandmother or auntie (or father, grandfather or uncle!) to pass along some family secrets, either. Alas, the extent of my family culinary secrets begins and ends with a cheese sandwich (albeit a really good one).
That said, while different from its spiritual progenitor, this dish is good in its own right. In fact, it's kind of awesome (if I do say so myself). I think I managed to coax a lovely - dare I say complex? - balance of flavors from the broth, if Poppa's licked-clean bowl is any indication.
I originally planned to make the my version with pork rather than beef, but I was foiled by the Whole Foods animal welfare rating system. It ranges from 1 - presumably animals that have at least been treated marginally better than those in a factory farm - to 5, perhaps for animals who have enjoyed regular pedicures, trips to the spa, and massages. The day I went to the market, all of the suitable pork was rated a lowly and sad number 1, so I decided to go with a grass fed, pasture-raised beef top round with a rating of 4, the same cut I usually use for goulash. (Using beef rather than pork is why, I believe, the broth became darker than the typical bright green of salsa verde.)
The ingredients for this sauce are fairly standard for salsa verde, with a few tweaks. As I believe this is the sort of thing you should feel your way through, I am not going to give fiddly measurements just to show up higher on a Google recipe search, but rather a guideline, because that makes more sense.
Carne de Res En Salsa Verde
Cube the beef (a 1 1/2 pound top round roast should do the trick) into cubes and shake them in a plastic bag that contains a mixture of flour, salt, pepper, and paprika. Fry in a sautoir in canola oil over medium high heat until browned. Pour the salsa verde over the beef, scraping up the fond, and turn the heat to low. Cover and simmer until the beef is meltingly soft.
To serve, garnish with red onion, cilantro, and the reserved poblano. And do I have to tell you to squeeze liberal amounts of lime over everything? I hope not!
And of course, everything - and I mean everything - is better in a corn tortilla, and that's how we enjoyed this dish: