This take on picadillo, a classic Cuban dish, is a fabulous weeknight meal — it makes a large serving and you don’t
need to serve anything else. Make it the night before you intend to serve it because the flavors will improve.
Cuban-Style Hash with Fried Plantains
- 2 cups cooked brown or red rice
- 1 tbsp olive oil 15 mL
- 1 onion, finely chopped
- 1 green bell pepper, seeded and diced
- 1 jalapeño pepper, seeded and diced
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 12 oz extra lean ground beef 375 g
- 2 tsp dried oregano leaves 10 mL
- 1⁄2 tsp salt 2 mL
- 1⁄2 tsp freshly ground black pepper 2 mL
- 1 stick cinnamon, about 2 inches (5 cm) long
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 can (28 oz/796 mL) no-salt-added diced tomatoes with juice
- 2 tbsp each tomato paste and red wine vinegar 25 mL
- 8 large pimento-stuffed olives, sliced
- Fried Plantains
- 2 tbsp butter 25 mL
- 4 very ripe plantains, thinly sliced
- 2 tbsp freshly squeezed lime or lemon juice 25 mL
- 4 hot runny fried or poached eggs, optional
- 1. In a large skillet or saucepan, heat oil over medium heat for 30 seconds. Add onion, bell pepper, jalapeño and garlic and stir well. Reduce heat to low. Cover and cook until vegetables are softened, about 10 minutes.
- 2. Increase heat to medium-high. Add ground beef, oregano, salt, black pepper, cinnamon stick and bay leaf and cook, stirring and breaking up beef with a spoon, until beef is browned and no longer pink, about 5 minutes. Add tomatoes with juice, tomato paste and vinegar and stir well. Stir in rice and season to taste with salt and black pepper. Reduce heat to low. Cover and simmer until flavors meld, about 15 minutes. Stir in sliced olives and remove from heat.
- 3. Meanwhile, make Fried Plantains: In a skillet, melt butter over low heat. Add plantains and cook, stirring occasionally, until caramelized, about 25 minutes. Pour lime juice over top. Serve hot.
- 4. To serve: Spoon picadillo onto a plate and top with a fried egg, if using. Serve fried plantains alongside.
- Make Ahead
- Make it the night before you intend to serve it because the flavors will improve. (Complete Steps 1 and 2, but don’t add the olives.)
- According to my friend Ana Thompson, who is Cuban, plantains should have black skins before they are cooked. In Cuba, they are usually fried in copious amounts of vegetable oil, but I find my method produces a very acceptable result.
Judith Finlayson http://judithfinlayson.com/