Good ISH - Ropa Vieja

23 March 2018

Here I am again. Saying something I ate was SO GOOD. Blogging the recipe because you have to make it. But... this was SO GOOD. YOU HAVE to make this. There.. got that out of the way. 

Ya'll, this was good. This recipe came from my Martha Stewart Slow Cooker cookbook. We made this on Sunday and it was so tender, so full of flavor.. so different. And the plantains, never had them before, loved them, will make again STAT. 

I think I've/we've decided we're doing recipes from this cookbook every Sunday from here on out. Who likes cooking on Sunday evening? Not me. Throw and go. And when the result comes out this delicious, it's a no brainier. 

1 1/2 pounds flank steak
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 medium onions, cut into thick slices - I used 1
1 large red bell pepper, cut into thick slices
3 large cloves garlic, cut into thin slices
1 jalapeno (ribs and seeds removed for less heat, if desired), cut into thin slices
1 tablespoon whole cumin seeds
2 tablespoons tomato paste 
1 can (28 ounces) diced tomatoes- I used 1 fire roasted, 1 regular 
1/2 cup small Spanish olives
1 tablespoon capers, drained, plus 1 tablespoon brine
Fresh cilantro leaves, for serving
Cooked white rice and plantain chips, for serving

Preheat a 5-to-6-quart slow cooker. Season steak generously with salt and pepper. In a large skillet, heat 1 tablespoon oil over high. Add steak and cook until browned on both sides, about 8 minutes. Transfer to slow cooker.

Add remaining 1 tablespoon oil to skillet. Add onions, bell pepper, garlic, jalapeno, and cumin seeds; season with salt and pepper and cook until vegetables are tender, about 5 minutes. Stir in tomato paste; cook 2 minutes more. Add tomatoes and bring to a boil. Pour mixture over steak in slow cooker; cover and cook on high until very tender, 5 hours (or on low 10 hours).

Transfer steak to a platter; cut in half crosswise. Using two forks, shred meat. Transfer sauce to skillet; cook over high heat until slightly thickened, about 10 minutes. Stir in shredded meat, olives, and capers with brine; cook just until heated through, 2 minutes more. Top with cilantro and serve, with rice and plantain chips.

Now these plantain chips-- she just casually mentions, serve with plantain chips. OK but HOW?! How do I peel these things first? Is there a proper way? (YES- I youtubed) and how do I cut them? How do I season? How and what temp do I cook? I had so many questions. So I googled... a lot. And I came up with a recipe that I took from 4 different ones. And it's easy... 
Drizzle with EVOO
Season with salt
Season with cayenne
Roast on 450 for as long/little as you want

Here's my before... I always use parchment paper because I'm lazy and want to clean as little as possible. You can see the after above :) 

Oh and I used my mandolin to cut these guys. It was still quite hard. And I wasted a lot. But the end result was well worth the headache. Now I know! 

Try them!! I'm going to make them again.. soon! So good! So unexpected. 
Enjoy! XOXO

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