Friday, January 27, 2012

Ropa Vieja

Another yummy Cuban dish that I had while visiting Columbus was Ropa Vieja. Basically, all it is, is a flank steak that has been simmered in a flavorful sauce made of red wine and tomatoes. The flank steak is seasoned with salt and pepper, then seared over high heat in a dutch oven or heavy bottomed skillet. Once seared, the flank steak is removed from the pot and set aside while the rest of the flavors are combined. Started with sofrito of course, onions and bell pepper join the party followed by red wine, tomato paste and water. The flank steak is added back in and everything is gently simmered for a couple hours. The meat is then shredded and the sauce reduced down. Served with rice and black beans of course.

One Year Ago: Mediterranean Salad
Two Years Ago: Orange Chicken

What You Need:

1 tbs veg oil
2 lb flank steak
1/2 c sofrito
1 large onion, sliced
1 large bell pepper, sliced
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 (5oz) can tomato paste
1 1/2 c red wine (not a sweet red)
1 c water
1 tbs oregano
1/2 tbs cumin
salt and pepper

What To Do:

Season the flank steak with lots of salt and pepper. Sear in the veg oil on both side in a heavy bottomed skillet or dutch oven. You want it brown and crusty on both sides. Remove to a plate. Reduce the heat to low and add the sofrito. Cook for a few minutes until fragrant, being careful that it doesn't stick and burn to the bottom. Add in the onions, bell peppers, garlic and tomato paste. Cook for a couple more minutes, again making sure that it doesn't stick and burn. Stir in the wine and water, scrapping the bottom of the pan to get up anything that did stick. Add in the oregano and cumin and stir everything until well combined. Nestle the meat back into the mixture so that it's covered with the sauce. Bring to a boil, then turn the heat as low and possible and cook for at least two hours, stirring occasionally. You want it to be bubbling slightly. After the two hours, remove and shred the meat. Turn the heat to high and reduce the sauce a bit until nice and thick. Stir the meat back in and serve.

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