22 December 2018

Weekend Cooking: Slow Cooker Ropa Vieja

Ropa Vieja from Food & WineIt's almost Christmas, and my cooking week, has gone full-on easy, tried-and-true, and flexible. I can't believe how many evenings have been taken up with last-minute errands, wrapping, cleaning, decorating ... ARGH.

Last week's dinners included lentil soup, roast chicken, and pasta with my homemade sauce (from the freezer). Last night we resorted to tuna salad because the easy savory galatte I had planned suddenly seemed like too much trouble.

Tonight I'm turning to the slow cooker and a reliable recipe from Food & Wine magazine. I cut out this recipe for ropa vieja from the March 2010 issue, but I found a copy of it on the magazine's website, so you can bookmark it there or here, whichever is easier for you.

Ropa Vieja is a Cuban dish, and I'm not at all sure that this recipe is anywhere close to being authentic, so you can let me know if you care to research. Note too that I agree with the reviewers on the Food & Wine site, that the recipe as written was not overly flavorful. I have tweaked the ingredients to suit our tastes, and that's the version you'll get here.

Slow Cooker Ropa Vieja
Adapted from Food & Wine

  • Adapted recipe: Ropa Vieja from Food & WineOne (2- to 3-pound) flank steak, cut into 4 chunks
  • Sea salt and pepper to taste
  • One (28-ounce) can diced tomatoes
  • 1/2 cup red wine (I don't really measure)
  • 1 red bell pepper, sliced
  • 1 orange bell pepper, sliced
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 5 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 2 or 3 hot peppers, depending on taste and which peppers you're using, chopped
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons dried oregano (I don't really measure)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin (I don't really measure)
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder (I don't really measure)
  • 3/4 cup pitted green olives (I halve them after not measuring)
  • 2 tablespoons capers, drained
  • 1/3 to 1/2 cup chopped cilantro
  • Brown rice for serving
Season the steak with salt and pepper.

Put the tomatoes and their juices, the wine, bell peppers, onion, garlic, hot peppers, oregano, cumin, bay leaf, and chili powder in the slow cooker. Mix. Place the steak on top. Cover and cook on high for 5 hours, until the meat is very tender.

Transfer the meat to a cutting board and let rest while you stir the olives, capers, and cilantro into the sauce. Don't turn off the cooker.

Shred the meat and return it to the cooker. Taste the sauce and adjust the seasonings, if needed. Let the meat rewarm for a few minutes. Serve over the rice.

The photo of the finished dish is from Food & Wine. Note that the ropa vieja is always waaaay more saucy than this photo shows.
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12 comments:

Mae Travels 12/22/18, 6:20 AM  

Ropa Vieja has always sounded really delicious to me, including the versions from other Latin and Caribbean countries. Yours sounds very delicious. I've always suspected that the long, slow cooking makes up for some tough meat that they had (or still have) in some of those places.

best... mae at maefood.blogspot.com

Judee Algazi 12/22/18, 6:48 AM  

Enjoy the holidays and thanks for hosting Weekend Cooking . So many interesting shares each week.

Clarissa 12/22/18, 6:56 AM  

We are not green olive people, so I’ve never considered cooking with them. Do they provide a flavor to the dish or is it a color/shape/texture thing?

Deb Nance at Readerbuzz 12/22/18, 7:56 AM  

I love all Latino cooking, so I need to take a close look at this recipe. The crockpot was my friend through all my years of working, and I still bring it out now and then since I've retired.

Patrick Looney 12/22/18, 8:07 AM  

That looks delicious!

rhapsodyinbooks 12/22/18, 9:23 AM  

I'm always in favor of tuna salad, or even just, tuna, with cheese melted on top! I would never dream of looking askance at anyone who chose it!

bermudaonion 12/22/18, 10:10 AM  

We have company coming today and we'll be crazy busy at the store so I might just have to try this this week.

Jackie Mc Guinness 12/22/18, 10:53 AM  

We are both finally over our colds! So nice to be back in the land of the living!

I love my slow cooker and this sounds like a good one. I don't have one here in the condo, but your dish reminded me of something I can make on the stove.

Merry Christmas!

Abi Pearson 12/22/18, 12:29 PM  

Oh my god my mouth is watering!

Carole 12/22/18, 6:28 PM  

Happy HOlidays! Cheers from Carole's chatter

Tina 12/23/18, 9:53 AM  

Can’t go wrong with Food and Wine recipes. That looks delicious, just the thing for one of my New Years dinners. I wanted to hook up this week but wasn’t organized. We are camping in Destin, Fl so I’ll have food stories to share upcoming.

Hope you and yours have a wonderful and safe holiday! 🎄

Vicki 12/23/18, 4:44 PM  

Looks and sounds really good!

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