This simple but tasty dish evolved from the need to preserve meat without refrigeration since chile acts as an antioxidant and prevents the meat from spoiling. It is a very common restaurant entree in New Mexico.
Note: This recipe requires advance preparation.
1½ cups crushed dried red New Mexican chile, seeds included (Chimayó preferred)
4 cloves garlic, minced
3 teaspoons dried oregano
3 cups water
2 pounds pork, cut in strips or cubed
Combine the chile, garlic, oregano, and the water and mix well to make a "caribe" sauce.
Place the pork in a glass pan and cover with the chile caribe sauce. Marinate the pork overnight in the refrigerator.
Bake the marinated pork, uncovered, in a 300°F oven for 2 hours or until the pork is very tender and starts to fall apart. You may have to add a little water to keep the pork from burning.
Serving Suggestions: Place the Carne Adovada in a flour tortilla to make a burrito, use it as a stuffing for sopaipillas, or use it as filling for enchiladas. If you add chopped potatoes during the last hour of baking, the dish becomes a sort of stew.