|Nutrition Facts (per serving)|
|Servings: 4 to 6|
|Amount per serving|
|% Daily Value*|
|Total Fat 22g||29%|
|Saturated Fat 7g||33%|
|Total Carbohydrate 28g||10%|
|Dietary Fiber 5g||16%|
|*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.|
This recipe for Cuban beef stew is known as ropa vieja which means "old clothes" in Spanish. The name describes the shreds of meat and vegetables in the dish which resemble colorful strips of rags.
The beef must be cooked and shredded first. For convenience, you can prepare the beef the day before and refrigerate overnight to save time the next day. Flank is typically used, but chuck roast has a bit more flavor and is great for slow cooking. Brisket is another good option.
This beef stew is hearty enough to eat on its own but also goes well over rice dishes and soaked up with crusty bread. You can also serve it with plantains, yellow rice or white rice and black beans, or yuca con mojo. In the Spanish version of ropa vieja, garbanzo beans are used in place of the peas used in this recipe.
"Ropa Vieja was quintessential in my home growing up in Southern Florida. This recipe delivers all those cozy, warm flavors with pantry staples you probably already have on hand and minimal effort. It's easy to adapt to make it your own as well." —Lauryn Bodden
- For the Steak:
- 2 pounds flank steak (or chuck roast)
- 1 large onion (quartered)
- 2 cloves garlic (smashed)
- 1 large celery rib (chopped)
- 1 tablespoon salt
- For the Stew:
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 2 cloves garlic (minced)
- 1 large onion (sliced into thin strips)
- 1 large green bell pepper (sliced into thin strips)
- 1 1/2 pounds tomatoes (diced)
- 2 tablespoons dry sherry
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 tablespoon ground cumin
- 1/4 cup cooked sweet peas (frozen and thawed are okay)
- Salt and pepper to taste
Prepare the Steak
Gather the steak ingredients.
Place the steak into a large stockpot and add water to cover the steak completely.
Add the quartered onion, smashed garlic, chopped celery, and salt.
Bring ingredients to a boil, then reduce to moderate heat and cook until steak is tender, about 1 1/2 hours.
Transfer the meat only to a platter to cool. You can skim and strain the cooking liquid (discarding the onion, garlic, and celery) and save it for another recipe.
Shred it with two forks when the meat is cool enough to handle. At this point, you can refrigerate the meat overnight if desired, or carry on with cooking.
Prepare the Stew
Gather the stew ingredients and cooked steak.
In a large skillet or pot, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the minced garlic and sauté until soft, about 1 minute.
Reduce the heat to medium and add the sliced onion and bell pepper. Cook until vegetables are soft, about 10 minutes.
Stir in the diced tomatoes, sherry, bay leaves, cumin, and a pinch of salt.
Turn the heat to medium-high and cook for 25 minutes, occasionally stirring to prevent sticking.
Remove the bay leaves.
Stir in the shredded beef and cook for about 10 minutes until the beef is heated through.
Stir in the peas. Turn off the heat. Add salt and pepper to taste. Serve immediately with rice if desired.
- Deglaze with 1/2 cup white wine for added acidity and complexity.
- Add pimiento or manzanilla Spanish olives.
- Use canned tomatoes if you can't find good fresh tomatoes.
- Add some beef broth for a saucier Ropa Vieja.