Saturday, July 12, 2014

Latin-Style Beef { Ropa Vieja }

In Nowhere, AZ there really isn't anything but a bar and a trailer park. Our mail comes from Kirkland, AZ, and the closest Mexican restaurant is 12 miles away give or take a switch back. When Bubba and the crew want Mexican it's up to me to make it. One of their favorite dishes is Ropa Vieja, the Spanish name for this Latin-style braised beef literally means "old clothes," because the meat is cooked until it's so tender it can be shredded into what resembles a pile of rags.

 

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 CUP DRAINED SLICED PICKLED JALAPENO CHILES
  • 3 RED, ORANGE AND YELLOW BELL PEPPERS, CUT INTO 1/4-INCH WIDE STRIPS { I USE ONE OF EACH }
  • 2 GARLIC CLOVES, THINLY SLICED
  • 1 LARGE ONION { 12 OUNCES }, CUT IN HALF AND THINLY SLICED
  • 1 TEASPOON GROUND CUMIN
  • 1/2 TEASPOON DRIED MEXICAN OREGANO
  • 1 BAY LEAF
  • 1 TEASPOON SALT
  • 2 BEEF FLANK STEAKS { 3 1/2 TO 4 POUNDS TOTAL }
  • 1 CAN { 14 1/2 OUNCES } WHOLE TOMATOES IN JUICE
  • WARM TORTILLAS

Directions:

  1. In a 6 1/2-quart slow-cooker bowl, stir together jalapenos, bell peppers, garlic, onion, cumin, oregano, bay leaf, and salt. Top with steaks cutting if necessary to fit into the  slow-cooker bowl.
  2. Using kitchen shears, coarsely cut up tomatoes in the can. Pour tomatoes over steaks; do not stir. Cover slow-cooker and cook on Low for 9 hours.
  3. Using a slotted spoon, transfer steaks with vegetables to a large bowl. Discard bay leaf.
  4. Using 2 forks, shred steaks, with the grain, into fine strips.
  5. Skim and discard fat from cooking liquid in slow-cooker bowl. Stir cooking liquid into steak mixture 
  6. Spoon into serving bowls and seve with warm tortillas.

ACTIVE TIME: 15 MINUTES
SLOW-COOK TIME: 9 HOURS ON LOW
MAKES: 10 MAIN-DISH SERVINGS