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Island Bites: Ropa Vieja (Caribbean Shredded Beef Stew)

Updated on August 8, 2013
4.5 stars from 4 ratings of Island Bites' Ropa Vieja

What is Ropa Vieja?

Ropa Vieja is a popular dish of the Caribbean and the Canary Islands. The name "ropa vieja" means old clothes. It is a shredded beef stew in a tomato and peppers sauce.

Originally, the dish was made with leftover beef, that was shredded and reheated in sauce. Now is a stew made, mostly, with flank steak. Although skirt steak or even brisket is often used.

There is no official Ropa Vieja recipe. Every country, (and every family for that matter) has their own way of preparing the dish. Some people add olives or capers. In the Canary Islands, most people add chickpeas and potatoes.

In the Caribbean, this delicious stew is served with white rice and tostones or fried sweet plantains.

Instructions

  1. (You could also use skirt steak, flank steak or brisket to make this dish.)
  2. Put all the ingredients in a large pot. Add water. Bring to a light boil, cover and reduce temperature. Let it simmer for about 3 or 4 hours, or until is fork tender.
  3. (You could use a pressure cooker if you want it to cook faster. You could also use a slow cooker, and make this step a day in advance.)
  4. Let it cool. Shred the meat. Reserve the broth.

To prepare the meat:

  • (aprox. 4lbs) 1 round eye roast, (cubed in 4 large chunks)
  • 1 onion, in half
  • 1/2 bell pepper, in half
  • 6 garlic cloves
  • peppercorns
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • salt
  • 1 sprig of cilantro, *You could use a culantro leaf

To make Ropa Vieja

Ingredients:

  • 2 onions, julienne
  • 1 green bell pepper, julienne
  • 1 red bell pepper, julienne
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 6 ounces tomato sauce or tomato pure
  • 1/4 cup white wine
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • salt & pepper
  • 2 or 3 cups reserved broth
  • 1/4 cup oil


Instructions

  • Heat oil in a large skillet. Sauté onions and peppers at medium heat for about 8 minutes. Add garlic and cumin. Cook for another 3 to 4 minutes.
  • Add the wine and tomato sauce. Cook for 5 more minutes.
  • Stir in the shredded beef and 2 cups of broth. Add salt and pepper if needed.
  • Lower the temperature and let it simmer cover for 25 to 30 minutes. You could add more broth if is to dry.


Comments

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    • IslandBites profile image
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      IslandBites 2 years ago from Puerto Rico

      Thanks for your comment.

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      Manoj 2 years ago

      Simply wish to say your article is as hnansitsiog. The clearness in your post is just spectacular and i can assume you are an expert on this subject. Well with your permission allow me to grab your RSS feed to keep up to date with forthcoming post. Thanks a million and please keep up the gratifying work.

    • IslandBites profile image
      Author

      IslandBites 3 years ago from Puerto Rico

      I hope you like it. Thanks for the comment, Alpha!

    • Alphadogg16 profile image

      Kevin W 3 years ago from Texas

      This looks absolutely delicious IslandBites, I will definitely have to try it.

    • IslandBites profile image
      Author

      IslandBites 3 years ago from Puerto Rico

      Thanks, teaches!

    • teaches12345 profile image

      Dianna Mendez 3 years ago

      This is a favorite dish of many hispanics in the US. I love the recipe you shared and must make some soon.

    • IslandBites profile image
      Author

      IslandBites 4 years ago from Puerto Rico

      No hay nada mejor que la comida de las abuelas. Gracias por comentar!

    • titi6601 profile image

      titi6601 4 years ago

      Que Rico my grandma makes this dish all the time.

    • IslandBites profile image
      Author

      IslandBites 4 years ago from Puerto Rico

      I'm glad you liked it.

    • profile image

      Sol 4 years ago

      Thank you for your recipe, Imade it two days ago anit was delicious.

    • IslandBites profile image
      Author

      IslandBites 4 years ago from Puerto Rico

      Thanks!

    • Thief12 profile image

      Thief12 4 years ago from Puerto Rico

      This was delicious indeed :-)

    • IslandBites profile image
      Author

      IslandBites 4 years ago from Puerto Rico

      It is really good. Thanks for the comment!

    • Peggy W profile image

      Peggy Woods 4 years ago from Houston, Texas

      This sounds delicious and fairly easy to make. Thanks for the recipe.

    • IslandBites profile image
      Author

      IslandBites 4 years ago from Puerto Rico

      Thanks for stopping by!

    • Mike Robbers profile image

      Mike Robbers 4 years ago from London

      Seems delicious! What I like most is the freedom to choose your own ingredients and the varied recipes around the world. Thanks for sharing!

    • IslandBites profile image
      Author

      IslandBites 4 years ago from Puerto Rico

      Thanks!

    • rose-the planner profile image

      rose-the planner 4 years ago from Toronto, Ontario-Canada

      This looks amazing and scrumptious! Thank you for sharing. (Voted Up)

      -Rose

    • ladydeonne profile image

      Deonne Anderson 4 years ago from Florence, SC

      I do not care for stew but believe that I might like this recipe because it dos not call for potatoes or carrots I will try it this winter.

    • IslandBites profile image
      Author

      IslandBites 4 years ago from Puerto Rico

      Gracias! jajajaa

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      Sonia Crespo 4 years ago

      ¡Que ricura! Se ve delicioso, mi boca se hace agua. Gracias por compartir la receta. Quisiera hacerla, pero preferiría tener ese sartén ahora mismo frente a mi. ¡Mmmm!