Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Cafe Rio Pork and Tomatillo Ranch Dressing

One of my favorite things to do is look for yummy new recipes to try... I have so many cookbooks and cooking magazines that I have to store oodles in big rubbermaid containers because I'm out of space in my cupboards and on my shelves. And then there's this awesome thing called the internet! Wow! I get on the internet and go through all these amazing cooking blogs that are out there and find some really great new recipes.

Lately I have been craving Cafe Rio Pork Salad. I have a recipe that uses brown sugar, salsa, and coke. I like the flavor of it but it just isn't quite what I'm looking for. I have looked at all these cooking blogs and found many different variations of Cafe Rio Pork. When I found this one, I just knew it was the one!!! So, I tried it! O....M....G!!! Like if I didn't know better, I would have thought it came straight out of the Cafe Rio kitchen! It is THAT good! And THAT close! I found the pork and dressing recipes on Anne Strawberry's Blog. She has some amazing recipes and I'm excited to be able to keep trying more! Then I went on another search for the cilantro lime rice. After perusing over bunches of different variations of this recipe, I decided to try this one, found on Tasty Kitchen. The rice was good and the rice cooker made it so easy! It definately completed the salad! So now, for the Pork and Dressing recipes:

Cafe Rio Pork
Printable Recipe
Recipe adapted from Anne Strawberry

4 lb pork loin roast
1 can Dr Pepper
1 cup brown sugar
2 Tbsp dry mustard
1 Tbsp cumin
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 can chipotle chiles in Adobo sauce

First open can of chiles and drain the sauce into the crockpot. ( FYI~~I used a 5 qt dutch oven and cooked this in the oven!) Discard the chiles. Chipotles are just roasted jalapenos and are darn hot so don't use them unless you can TAKE THE HEAT! Add sugar, mustard, cumin, garlic and Dr. Pepper. Stir everything and toss in trimmed pork loin. Pierce it several times so that the juices absorb in it better. Cook for 5 hours or so, turning the roast every hour or so. Make sure that there is always plenty of liquid so that your roast does not burn and go dry. I cooked it in the oven, covered, for 5 1/2 hours. When the liquid was low, I just added a couple cups of water. Shred this pork and let sit in the juices before serving. The longer it soaks up the juice before serving, the better it will be!

Now for the dressing:

Tomatillo Ranch Dressing
Recipe Adapted from Anne Strawberry

4 tomatillos, outer shell removed, rinsed and cut into fourths
1/2 cup mayo, NOT miracle whip
1/2 cup milk
1 packet Ranch Dressing Mix
A bunch of cilantro, washed and stems discarded
Juice from one lime

Place all ingredients in blender and blend until smooth. (I love my Vitamix!) Refrigerate until set. Serve with Cafe Rio pork!!

Happy Cooking



  1. I'm so glad you liked the recipe- it always makes me happy to hear back from people! Your blog is great, thanks for your kind words!

  2. I think this sounds like a good recipe. I am going to try it as soon as my new vitamix arrives. It should be here tomorrow and I am so giddy!

  3. Oh my!!...that's all I can say!

  4. Loved that you shared with me and we were able to enjoy a classic without going out of town. It was so yummy and totally took care of the craving. Thank you, my dear!!!


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