Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Vaca Frita

Here I go on my Cuban kick again. I just love that Cuban food! As I mentioned in a previous post, my favorite restaurant in New Jersey was called Cuban Pete's. I would always either order Vaca Frita or their Churrasco Steak. EVERY time!!!

We went to the Ann Arbor library last weekend and I always find myself migrating straight back to the cookbook section. Imagine that, right?! Low and behold, this Cuban cookbook caught my eye.

So now I know how to make both of my favorite Cuban entrees! I have one more I want to try but I'll save that for another week. This recipe was very good and reminded me a lot of Cuban Pete's. It needed some extra salt and some extra squeezes of lime juice at the end to make it just perfect.

Vaca Frita
(Also known as Crispy Shredded Beef)
Source: In A Cuban Kitchen cookbook

3 lbs. flank steak
2 bay leaves
1 carrot, cut into 3 pieces
1 medium tomato, cut in half
1/2 T. cumin
1/2 T. dried oregano
1/4 c. olive oil
1 lg. Spanish onion, sliced fine
2 T. chopped fresh cilantro
1/4 c. fresh lime juice
Salt and fresh ground black pepper, to season

In a small stock pan, add the meat, bay leaves, carrot, tomato, cumin, and oregano and cover with water. Bring to a boil and then simmer for about 1 and a half hours until the meat becomes tender. Remove from the heat, drain, and shred meat.

Heat a skillet until it is very hot and add 1/8 c. of the olive oil. Add the shredded meat, being sure to spread it evenly over the pan. Flip the meat and cook until both sides become crispy.

In a separate pan, add the remaining olive oil and cook the onion until caramelized. Mix in the meat, cilantro, and lime juice. Season with salt and pepper. Serve with extra lime wedges.

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