"This is an authentic-tasting version of the popular Salvadorean dish. It does take some time, however it is well worth the effort! You can purchase pre-made Chicharron at specialty markets, however this recipe tastes just like it. I also make the Salsa Roja and Curtido ahead of time (the salsa freezes very well, and the Curtido can stay in the fridge at least a week)."
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2 1/2h servings
Serving size has been adjusted!
Original recipe yields 10 servings

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  1. Salsa Roja: Add tomato sauce, green pepper, onion, garlic, chicken bouillon, cilantro, water, and salt to a medium pot. Cook 20 minutes, medium-low heat. Let cool for 10 minutes, puree sauce in a blender until smooth. Add sauce back to pot, simmer for another 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Once cool, refrigerate until serving.
  2. Curtido: Place cabbage and carrots in a large bowl. Pour boiling water over mixture, let sit for 5 minutes. Drain well. Add scallions, vinegar, oregano, red pepper flakes. Chill until serving.
  3. Chicharron: Cook bacon with garlic until almost fully cooked (not crispy). Keep the bacon fat to add later or discard. Add bacon, bacon fat (optional), green pepper, tomatoes, and cheese to a food processor. Puree, add salt to taste. Masa harina: Mix the flour and some water together by hand. Add just enough water to make the dough very moist but still solid. Place a wet towel over masa dough to keep it from drying out.
  4. Heat a large skillet on medium/high heat.
  5. There are two ways you can make the pupusas. The traditional way is to take a golf ball-sized piece of dough, roll it until it is round in your hand, then make a hole inside with your thumb. Put some of the chicharron inside the hole, close it up, flatten the ball with your hands into a thick tortilla, and place on skillet to cook. The other way is to make 2 thin tortillas with the dough by flattening each one between 2 sheets of wax paper. Spread some chicharron mixture on one tortilla, place the other one on top, sealing the edges.
  6. Add some oil to the skillet and fry pupusas each side until golden brown.
  7. Serve each with 2 tbsp. of curtido and 1 tbsp. of salsa roja on top.


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