Most recipes neglect to mention how to clean the tripe first. It must be well-cleaned to stop any of its smell coming into the stew.
To prepare the tripe, you cut off any excess fat, and chop into 1 inch (2 ½ cm) pieces or to the size advised by your recipe, Simmer for 15 minutes in water that has the juice from 1 lemon in it, then drain in a collander, and run cold water over it.
You can then proceed with the recipe.
You can use canned or frozen hominy, or if you start off with dried, simmer it for a few hours first to cook it, then drain.
The chile can be all one chile, such as ancho, or a mix of chiles, such as ancho and poblano, but it is not meant to be searingly hot spice-wise.
Some recipes add another meat as well, such as calf’s foot or pigs foot.
Some American versions add tomato, but purists scoff at this.
The mixture is stewed for hours. It is served hot. At the table, it is garnished with fresh diced onion, fresh chopped oregano and a squirt of lemon juice.
Some swear by it as a hangover cure, so it is often served on New Year’s Day mornings. Many restaurants serve it for breakfast on weekend mornings for people who drank too much the night before,
You can buy it already made in cans.
In 1987, there were false reports that a human finger had been found in a can of menudo.