A colorful meal made of braised beef and bell peppers in a tangy tomato-based sauce and served with the perfect side of rice, this traditional Cuban dish will never go out of style.
Prepare rice according to package directions.
Season flank steak with half each salt and pepper. Heat 2 tbsp oil in large Dutch oven set over medium heat. Cook flank steak for 3 to 5 minutes per side or until browned all over; remove from pan.
Add remaining oil to the pan. Cook onions, bell peppers and garlic, for 3 to 5 minutes or until vegetables start to soften. Stir in cumin, oregano, paprika, smoked paprika, remaining salt and pepper, allspice and cloves. Cook for 3 to 5 minutes or until vegetables are tender and fragrant. Stir in wine; bring to a boil. Cook for 1 minute. Stir in crushed tomatoes, broth, water, tomato paste and bay leaves; bring to a boil. Add flank steak. Reduce heat to medium-low. Cover and cook, stirring occasionally, at a gentle simmer for 2 to 2 ½ hours or until meat is very tender.
Transfer meat to large bowl and shred with 2 forks. Stir shredded meat back into sauce. Stir in cilantro.
You don’t typically associate old clothes with a meal. At least, not one that you would find appetizing. Ropa vieja, meaning “old clothes” in Spanish, is an incredibly flavorful and delicious Cuban dish consisting of shredded flank steak and vegetables in a vibrant, tomato-based sauce. Meat is commonly paired with sides like white rice and fried plantains. It gets its unique name from the fact that it resembles a heap of colorful rags when the vibrant veggies and shredded steak are cooked and mixed together.
A popular and beloved dish in Cuba, Ropa Vieja has been designated as one of their national dishes. This popular meal has many variations and is also popular in other Caribbean areas such as Puerto Rico and Panama, and even other parts of the world like Spain and the Philippines. Other recipe versions, tend to have sweet undertones due to the use of fully ripe red bell peppers.
Whatever your preference, there’s bound to be a version of Ropa Vieja out there that is sure to make your taste buds dance!
For a taste of the Cuban version, try this tasty recipe loaded with fragrant spices and paired with our very own Carolina® Jasmine Rice and fresh bell peppers. If you’re feeling really bold and inspired, try your hand at some fried plantains for an authentic meal the whole family will love!
Follow it up with a classic Cuban-style arroz con leche using our brown rice pudding recipe.