A traditional Cuban dish that's packed with vibrant flavors!Print Recipe
- 1 1½ lb Chuck roast
- Kosher salt
- Freshly ground pepper
- Onion powder
- 3 tablespoons canola oil
- ½ cup Sofrito (recipe follows)
- ¼ teaspoon ground cumin
- 2 8-ounce cans Spanish-style tomato sauce May sub regular tomato sauce for a milder version.
- 1 ½ cups water
- 3 tablespoons coarsely chopped pimiento-stuffed green olives
- 2 bay leaves
- 4 celery stalks with leaves, cut into ¼-inch dice
- 3 medium carrots trimmed and cut into ¼-inch dice
For the sofrito
- 2 medium Spanish onions cut into large chunks
- 3 to 4 Italian frying peppers or cubanelle peppers
- 8-10 to matillos
- 16 to 20 cloves garlic peeled
- 1 large bunch cilantro washed
- 3 to 4 ripe plum tomatoes cored and cut into chunks
- 1 large red bell pepper cored, seeded and cut into large chunks
- 1 Anaheim chili
For the sofrito
- Chop the onion and cubanelle or Italian peppers in the work bowl of a food processor until coarsely chopped.
- With the motor running, add the remaining ingredients one at a time and process until smooth. The sofrito will keep in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. It also freezes beautifully.
- Freeze excess sofrito in ½ cup batches in sealable plastic bags. *see note
For the Ropa Vieja
- Preheat the oven to 350° F.
- Season both sides of the beef generously with salt, pepper and onion powder.
- Heat the oil in a large, oven-proof, heavy skillet over high heat until rippling. Add the beef and cook it until well browned on both sides, about 10 minutes.
- Drain or spoon off most of the fat from the pan.
- Stir in the sofrito, 2 teaspoons salt, cumin, tomato sauce, water, olives, and bay leaves. Bring to a boil, cover the dish and bake until the meat pulls apart easily with a fork, about 3 hours. Let stand in the sauce until cool enough to handle.
- Shred the meat coarsely by hand or using two forks.
- Return it to the sauce and add the celery and carrots. Bring to a simmer over low heat and cook until the vegetables are tender, about 10 minutes.
- Watch the liquid as it cooks, and add more broth or water as needed.
- Serve with black beans and yellow rice.
*Now, sofrito purists will tell you that it has to be simmered or braised before it’s a true sofrito. I disagree with this entirely. At least the way I use it, it always gets cooked anyway, and why would I braise it just to leave all that flavor in the braising pot? I say throw it together raw, and let it cook and meld flavors in whatever dish you’re making as it cooks. Alternative cooking method: Add all ingredients for Ropa Vieja to a crock pot. Cook on low for 6 hours.
Calories: 61kcal | Carbohydrates: 2g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 6g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 1mg | Sodium: 68mg | Potassium: 78mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 3842IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 10mg | Iron: 1mg