Cuban Ropa Vieja Recipe
Ropa Vieja literally means “old clothes” in Spanish. The name simply comes from the fact that the beef is shredded. This dish is traditionally served over white rice with plantains (platanos maduros or tostones) on the side. Flank steak is a tougher cut of meat so I typically use a pressure cooker to prepare the meat, however you may also use a slow cooker. It’s ready when the meat is tender and shreds easily. You can use the reserved stock later for a delicious vegetable beef soup!
2lbs. flank steak
4 whole cloves of garlic
I whole onion, cut into fourths
Water (enough to cover the meat & vegetables in the pot)
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1 large onion, chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 large green pepper, chopped or sliced in long, thin strips
1 15 oz. can tomato sauce
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. Sazón Goya
1 bay leaf
½ cup cooking sherry
roasted red peppers (optional, for garnish)
Pressure Cooker Method
Put meat, carrots, tomatoes, 4 whole cloves of garlic, and the whole onion (cut into fourths) into the pressure cooker. Add enough water to cover the ingredients. Heat on high until pressurized. Once pressurized, lower to medium temperature and cook for another 20 minutes. Remove from heat. (Wait until pressure valve drops to open the pot!) The meat should be soft enough to easily shred.
Slow Cooker Method
Put meat, carrots, tomatoes, 4 whole cloves of garlic, and the whole onion (cut into fourths) into the slow cooker. Add enough water to cover the ingredients. Cook for 6-8 hours on high heat. The meat is ready when you are able to shred it easily.
Shred the beef and set aside. Sauté the minced garlic and onion in the vegetable oil for 2-3 minutes. Add the green pepper and sauté for 2-3 minutes more. Add the beef and the rest of the ingredients (minus the roasted red peppers) and cook over medium-low heat for an additional 20 minutes. Serve over steamed white rice, garnish with the roasted red pepper (if desired) and enjoy!