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Prep 15 mins
Cook 1 hr
Vigoron is a Nicaraguan dish also popular in Costa Rica with coastal people. It is sold by street vendors wrapped in banana leaves. Pork rinds are commonly available in the market near the potato chips, and may be subbed for home-made chicharrones. Courtesy of CostaRica.com and posted in response to a recipe request.
- 4 lbs pork rinds (chicharron de cerdo) or 4 lbs pork cracklings (chicharron de cerdo)
- 4 lbs cassava, peeled and cut into 2-inch pieces
- 4 lbs cabbage, chopped (about 1 head)
- 3 bunches fresh cilantro
- 1⁄2 lb onion, peeled
- 3 lbs of ripe tomatoes, chopped
- 1 head garlic
- 1 red jalapeno chile, seeded and minced (or more, to taste)
- 3⁄4 cup lime juice, freshly squeezed
- 1 teaspoon granulated sugar
- 10 banana leaves (if you can't find banana leaves in your local market, regular dishes are just fine)
- Chicharrons is the product of pork fat being cooked on very low heat in a pot either on the stove or in the oven for something like three hours and releasing its oil or lard very slowly, leaving only the crunchy brown structure of the fat (the rendered fat, or lard, can be reserved to use as shortening in other recipes). Chicharrons may be purchased at local markets or carnicerias.
- Place the cooked chicharrones on a paper towel to cool and to continue to drain.
- When cool, chop into small pieces.
- Place cassava into a large pot and cover with water to a depth of 1".
- Heat to a boil and reduce to a simmer until the cassava is nearly tender.
- Add salt, oregano, and the garlic bulb.
- Continue to simmer until cassava is completely tender.
- Drain the water and let the vegetables cool; discard garlic.
- Chop the cilantro and the onions into thin pieces (or pulse in the food processor). Place the tomatoes in a large bowl; add the pepper, chopped onions, cilantro, lime juice and sugar.
- Mix well and add salt, pepper, and cumin to taste.
- To serve, place about 1/2 cup of chopped cabbage in the banana leaf (or dish) and top with two or three pieces of cassava, 1/4 cup of the salsa, and garnish with the chopped chicharrones.