Category Archives: Beef
One of the most desired cuts of beef in Brazil is called (picanha) . It is also very common in higher end restaurants in Yucatan these days. What is it?
Picanha is a cut of beef called sirloin cap in the United States or the rump cap in the United Kingdom, that is popular in Portugal and Brazil. In the United States, it is little known, but referred to as the rump cover, rump cap, or culotte.
In a Brazilian restaurant it is often served on large skewers…
I chose to roast it whole.
There are THREE steps to the recipe, which involves marinating overnight in the refrigerator (see below) with a citrus-herb salt rub.
Simple Roasted Picanha Recipe
Step One – Citrus-Herb Salt Rub
- 1 tablespoon kosher salt
- 1 tablespoon minced fresh parsley
- Zest of one small lemon, approximately 2 teaspoons
- 1 teaspoon minced fresh oregano
- 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 2 cloves garlic, roughly chopped
Score the fatty blanket on the picanha by making criss-crossing cuts into the fatty blanket covering one side of the picanha. Fat behaves differently than meat when cooked. It loses more liquid and therefore shrinks more. By scoring the fat, you can prevent the piece from curling and dis-forming while it grills.
Rub the salt mixture into the cross cuts of the fat. Refrigerate overnight.
Step Two – Preheat oven to 400 degrees, letting the picana come to room temperature.
Prepare the chimichurri sauce by mixing the following ingredients…
- 1/2 cup chopped parsley
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 teaspoons chili pepper flakes (less for milder flavor)
- 2 teaspoons minced oregano leaves
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 3 tablespoon red wine vinegar
- 1/2 cup olive oil
Step Three – Sear and Roast the picana as follows
Heat a large oven-safe skillet (preferably cast iron) over medium-high heat. Pour in a few tablespoons of olive oil.
Sear the beef until browned on both sides,approximately 2 minutes per side.Transfer the skillet to the oven with the fatty side of the piranha facing up.
Cook the roast for 35 minutes, or until the internal temperature reaches 128-130° for medium-rare. Remove the roast from the oven, cover with foil and let rest for 10 minutes before slicing. The temperature will rise 10 degrees while resting!!
Slice against the grain for tender cuts.
Here is my recent attempt to duplicate that restaurant experience in our oven…in case there is too much snow to fire up the Barbie, mates. Sliced after resting with chimichurri sauce.
Once a year, we seem to be able to find spaghetti squash in Yucatan. This was it! If you have never baked a spaghetti squash it is so simple. When it is done baking you take a large fork and shred it et voila – spaghetti! The simple version is to bake it and the add your favorite spaghetti sauces (commercial or homemade) and lots of Parmesan cheese,
This version is a little more time consuming but well worth it. Take a look –
The original recipe called for the filling to be baked inside the upturned squash. It was very difficult to shred the squash with the filling in it and thus I adapted the version and filled the shredded squash, mixing the filling into it.
Stuffed Spaghetti Squash
Cut the spaghetti squash in half horizontally and remove the seeds. Put squash cut sides down in a baking dish with a half inch or so of water. Drizzle with a little olive oil. Cover with foil and bake in 350-degree oven for 35 to 45 minutes. Test with a fork for tenderness.
While it is baking, prepare the stuffing as shown below.
- 1 medium spaghetti squash
- 1 lb. Ground beef
- 5 cloves of garlic crushed
- 1 large cooking onion
- Salt and pepper
- Seasoning to suit your taste
- ¼ cup Parmesan cheese
- 2 heaping tablespoons of salsa (optional)
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
Heat oil in pan. (I like to use my wok) Throw in the garlic and sauté for about 30 seconds. Throw in the onion and continue to sauté until tender.
Add ground beef and brown thoroughly. Season with salt and pepper.
Add other seasoning such as Italian as you wish*
Mix in the cheese. Mix in the salsa.
Keep warm until the squash is tender.
Turn the squash over on a plate leaving on the outer shell, shred with a fork being careful not to break the shell.Fill with the ‘stuffing”.
Top with sour cream, more salsa? BBQ sauce?
Since there might be a few new followers, I am noting a few of the recipes on the site which you might want to incorporate into your Canadian OR American Thanksgiving dinners. Hoping you might find some ideas before you head out to buy groceries…LOL
Look for these and other recipes in the GO box –
Good Eats Roasted Turkey or
Spice Rubbed Turkey or
Slow Cooker Rosemary Garlic Crusted Roast Beef (for those who are not into turkey)
Thai Style Chicken and Pumpkin Soup
Fragrant Fall Red Cabbage (side dish)
Pumpkin Crunch Cake (much better than pie!)
Happy Thanksgiving my friends!!
Ropa vieja (Spanish for “old clothes”) is one of the national dishes of Cuba, but is also popular in other areas of the Caribbean such as Puerto Rico and Panama. It consists of shredded or pulled stewed beef with vegetables. This was a dish we had in Havana in 2014. The beauty is that it is done in a slow cooker.
You can omit the olives, but trust me on this one. Serve with your favorite rice or use it with fresh tortillas.
Slow Cooker Ropa Vieja (Cuban Beef)
- 3 lbs. beef flank steak (or substitute Mexican arrachera)
- 1 cup beef broth
- 1 (6-oz.) can tomato paste
- 1 (14-oz.) can petite diced tomatoes
- 1.5 tsp. salt
- ¼ tsp. pepper
- 1 tsp. oregano
- 1 tsp. cumin
- ½ tsp. turmeric
- 1 Tbsp. apple cider vinegar
- 1 small white onion diced
- 2 bell peppers, diced ( I used red for contrast)
- 1 cup Spanish olives – green
- 3 whole garlic cloves, peeled
Cooked yellow rice for serving*
Slow Cooker Size:4-quart or larger
- Add the beef broth, tomato paste, diced tomatoes, salt, pepper, oregano, cumin, turmeric and apple cider vinegar to the slow cooker. Stir.
- Add the flank steak and flip it around in the sauce so it gets coated. Add the bell pepper, onion, olives and garlic cloves, mix those items together to combine on top of the meat.
- Cover and cook on low for 9 hours on LOW without opening the lid during the cooking time. Shred the meat with 2 forks right in the slow cooker.
If you have been following me you know that our slow cooker cooks faster for some unknown reason. When I looked up cooking on HIGH (because I was short of time) it suggested 5 hours as the equivalent. Guess what? It was done in a little over 2.5 hours using an arrachera of 1.3 kilos.
LESSON—-dont let it cook while you are away at work unless you know your cooker very well. Keep checking for doneness.
Sooo…my spouse bought this Paderno spiralizer a year ago..new toy…lol. We have only used it a handful of times. Since we started our low carb diet we are now using it more. We love lasagna, but low carb means no pasta or breads. Et voila, with Pinterest I discovered this recipe. We have served it to our guests and they loved it too! It tastes wonderful!!! Don’t tell anyone it is low carb… shown here with a green salad with radish sprouts.
Keto Lasagna with Zucchini Noodles Author Vicky | Tasteaholics.com
Prep Time 15 minutes Cook Time 30 minutes Total Time 45 minutes
Servings 4 Calories 544 kcal
- 16 oz. ground beef
- 1 cup Rao’s marinara sauce * (see below)
- 1 zucchini large
- 10 oz. ricotta cheese
- 4 oz. mozzarella cheese shredded
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Peel zucchini into strips and leave out the seedy core. Salt and let sit for 15 minutes and blot with paper towels.
Brown ground beef in pan and add marinara. Season well with salt and pepper.
Layer into a small casserole dish: meat, zucchini, ricotta, meat, zucchini, ricotta, mozzarella.
Cover with foil and bake for 30 minutes. Broil uncovered for 2-3 minutes to brown the top.
- Rao’s Marinara Sauce (Pinterest recipe)
Makes 7 cups
- Four 28-ounce cans whole tomatoes (I used four cans of Kirkland tomatoes)
- 1/2 cup olive oil
- 6 tablespoons minced onion
- 4 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
- Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
- 12 leaves fresh basil, torn (optional)
- Pinch of dried oregano
- Remove tomatoes from can and place in a large bowl, reserving juices. Crush tomatoes using your hands; remove and discard the hard core from stem end, and any skin and tough membrane; set aside. OR…just use as is if using Kirkland brand…
- Place oil in a large, nonreactive saucepan over medium-low heat. Add onion, and cook until soft and just beginning to brown, about 3 minutes. Stir in garlic, and cook until softened, about 30 seconds. Stir in tomatoes and reserved juices; season with salt. Increase heat and bring to a boil. Immediately reduce heat to low and simmer until slightly thickened, about 1 hour.
- Stir in basil, if using, oregano, and season with pepper; continue cooking 1 minute more. Remove from heat and serve.
- Amount Per Serving
- Calories 544 Calories from Fat 369
- Total Fat 41g 63%
- Saturated Fat 18g 90%
- Trans Fat 0g
- Polyunsaturated Fat 0g
- Monounsaturated Fat 0g
- Cholesterol 139mg 46%
- Sodium 487mg 20%
- Potassium 530mg 15%
- Total Carbohydrates 6g 2%
- Dietary Fiber 2g 8%
- Sugars 3g
- Protein 34g 68%
- * Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Until recently, soft shell tacos were very hard to find here. Yeah, we could have used tortillas which are everywhere!!! It seems lots of people are on low carb diets these days and I was able to find this GREAT recipe on Pinterest. Who needs a crust? The result was awesome, so much so that we couldn’t believe we ate the WHOLE thing at one sitting.
FYI…. you will notice in the recipe Taco Seasoning. It’s quite simple to make and cheaper. I have included the recipe I use for taco seasoning at the end of the Pie recipe…
Low Carb Crustless Taco Pie
- 1 pound ground beef
- 1 packet taco seasoning (see recipe below)
- 3 green onions thinly sliced
- 1/4 cup salsa (I like La Costena brand with added chipotle)
- 1 cup Mexican blend cheese finely shredded, quantity divided
- 4 large eggs
- 2/3 cup heavy cream
- 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
- OPTIONAL – a layer of refried beans on the bottom of the pie shell!
- Preheat oven to 350º Fahrenheit. Prepare a 9″ pie pan by greasing with butter or spraying with coconut oil.
- Heat a large skillet over medium high heat. If your ground beef is low in fat or if your skillet is not well seasoned, you may want to spray the pan with coconut oil to prevent sticking. When skillet is hot, add ground beef, breaking up into small pieces with a spoon or spatula. Cook, stirring occasionally until browned. Drain beef and add taco seasoning and cook according to package instructions. Set aside and allow to cool while continuing with the next step.
- In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together the eggs and heavy cream. Stir in the green onions, salsa, 3/4 cup of the cheese, and the salt.
- Stir prepared taco meat into the egg mixture. Pour this mixture into the prepared pie pan. Sprinkle remaining cheese on top.
- Bake pie in preheated oven for 35-45 minutes or until the top is brown and the pie is set. Allow to cool for 5 minutes before serving.
Serve with your favorite taco toppings such as salsa, sour cream, guacamole, sliced green onions, or whatever else you like! Maybe add a few sliced radishes…
Taco Seasoning (enough for this recipe)
1/4 tsp Garlic powder
1/4 tsp Onion powder
1/4 tsp Oregano, dried
1 tsp Black pepper
1 tbsp Chili powder
1/2 tsp Paprika
1 tsp Salt
1 1/2 tsp Cumin, ground
I know it sounds a little odd, but this is a very good dish served with rice or maybe Costco Ancient Grains. As usual my slow cooker had it ready in three hours on HIGH, contrary to what the recipe says. It seems every time I use my SC I have the same problem. What do the rest of you find? Mine is a Hamilton Beach with setting – High, Low and Warm. I can never go away and leave it even on LOW…grrr. Be aware…
- 1.5 lb. trimmed flank steak
- 2 cups sliced onions
- 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
- ½ cup reduced sodium soy sauce
- ½ cup water
- 1 T. quick cooking Tapioca, crushed
- 1 T. grated fresh ginger
- 5 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 green onions, sliced (whites and greens separated)
- 3 cups hot cooked rice (or Ancient Grains)
- Cut meat into 6 portions. In a 3.5 cup slow cooker combine meat and sliced onions.
- In a medium bowl, mix the next 6 ingredients (through garlic). Pour over the meat. Sprinkle with WHITE portions of the green onions
- Cover and cook on LOW 8 to 10 hours…or HIGH for 4 to 5 hours. (3 in my case!)
- Remove meat, reserving cooking liquid.
- Slice meat across the grain or coarsely shred and return to the cooker.
- Serve over rice and sprinkle with the GREEN portions of the green onions.
Makes 6 servings.
Thought I could Thai one on since it is now summer…LOL. Sorry that there is no photo, but we were travelling and no camera available.
Thai Basil Beef Bowls
Yield: about 4 servings
- 1 1/2 cups jasmine rice or long-grain white rice for serving
- 1 lb. flank steak, sliced against the grain into thin strips
- 1 tsp cornstarch
- 2 Tbsp + 1 tsp vegetable oil
- 1 red bell pepper, cored and seeded, diced into 2-inch strips
- 1/2 large yellow onion, thinly sliced
- 1 1/2 Tbsp minced garlic
- 1 cup matchstick carrots
- 1 cup fresh basil leaves (roughly chop larger leaves), plus more for garnish
- Sesame seeds (optional)
- 3 Tbsp low-sodium soy sauce
- 1 1/2 tsp cornstarch
- 1/3 cup water
- 1 1/2 Tbsp fish sauce
- 1 Tbsp oyster sauce
- 2 Tbsp packed brown sugar
- 1 Tbsp fresh lime juice
- 1 Tbsp Sambal Oleek, or more to taste (optional)
- Cook rice according to directions listed on package.
- For the sauce:
- In a small mixing bowl whisk together soy sauce and cornstarch until smooth. Stir in water, fish sauce, oyster sauce, brown sugar, lime juice and Sambal Oleek if using, set aside.
- For the beef and veggies:
- Toss beef with 1 tsp oil and 1 tsp cornstarch. Heat 2 Tbsp oil in a large skillet or wok over moderately high heat. Add beef and cook until browned on both sides but still slightly under-cooked in the center. Transfer beef to a plate while leaving oil in skillet. Reduce heat slightly, add bell pepper, onions and garlic and sauté until crisp tender, about 2 – 3 minutes (if needed you can add another 1 tsp of oil to the skillet). Add carrots, whisk sauce mixture once more then pour into skillet and allow to simmer, stirring frequently, until thickened, about 1 minute. Return beef to skillet along with basil leaves, toss until basil has just wilted. Serve immediately over cooked rice garnished with small basil leaves and sesame seeds if desired.
- Recipe source: Cooking Classy
Who does not like shepherd’s pie? There are several variations out there. Sometimes it is called Cottage Pie. This one was a snap! The only tricky part was the roux, melting the butter and adding the flour. Make your life easier and use instant potatoes!
Easy Shepherd’s Pie Recipe
- 1 1/2 lb. Ground Beef
- 4 cups Mashed Potatoes
- 1 tbsp Oil
- 1 tsp Minced Garlic
- 1 Onion, diced
- 1 tbsp Worcestershire Sauce
- 1 cup Milk
- 2 tbsp Butter
- 2 tbsp Flour
- 12 oz. Frozen Peas and Carrots, thawed (Use a can of mixed peas and carrots)
- Salt and Pepper to taste
- Grated Parmesan cheese
- Preheat oven to 375.
- Heat oil in a skillet over medium heat and add ground beef, onion and garlic.
- Cook until browned and drain.
- In another skillet or pan, melt putter and add flour.
- Cook roux for 2 minutes.
- Whisk in Worcestershire and milk.
- Cook for 1 minute to thicken.
- Combine beef mixture, gravy and thawed vegetables.
- Place in baking dish.
- Top with mashed potatoes and place in oven for 20-30 minutes until heated through. In the last few minutes sprinkle the cheese on the potatoes.
A 2008 survey by Heinz shows that Brussels sprouts now take the most-hated prize for Americans in general, with eggplant faring slightly worse among kids. Brussels sprouts seem to be universally loathed, practically: They make it to the top five in surveys of the most-hated vegetables around the world. From Just Disgusting, by Andy Griffiths…. check out the following link – Brussels Sprouts
I happen to be a big fan of these little gems. A simple little meal is a bunch of Brussels sprouts in a bowl with a few drops of water, microwaved with a little salt, pepper and butter. This time I decided to take it up a notch and use them in a stir fry (Thanks again to Pinterest). As Mikey would say…Try it and you will like it!
Oriental cooking is all in the preparation…so lets get chopping!
Beef Stir Fry with Brussels Sprouts
- 3 tablespoons oyster sauce
- 3 tablespoons reduced-sodium soy sauce
- 2 tablespoons unseasoned rice vinegar
- 4 tablespoons vegetable oil, divided
- 1 pound Brussels sprouts, halved
- 8 ounces flank or skirt steak, thinly sliced against the grain
- Kosher salt
- 4 scallions, whites chopped, greens sliced (Substitute green onions if you like)
- 3 garlic cloves, sliced
- 2 tablespoons chopped peeled ginger or fresh grated
- 2 medium carrots, peeled, thinly sliced on a diagonal
- 1 Fresno chile or jalapeño, sliced into rings OPTIONAL
- Steamed rice (for serving)
Whisk oyster sauce, soy sauce, vinegar, and 1/4 cup water in a small bowl; set sauce aside.
Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add Brussel sprouts and cook, tossing occasionally, until golden brown, about 4 minutes. Cover and cook until crisp-tender, about 3 minutes longer. Transfer to a plate; wipe out skillet.
Season steak with salt. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in same skillet over high heat until just beginning to smoke. Add steak in a single layer; cook until browned, about 3 minutes. Turn and cook until nearly cooked through, about 30 seconds. Add to Brussel sprouts.
Heat remaining 1 tablespoon oil in same skillet. Add scallion whites, garlic, and ginger and stir until fragrant, about 1 minute, adjusting heat as needed. Add carrots and chile and cook, tossing occasionally, until carrots are slightly softened, about 2 minutes.
Return Brussel sprouts and steak to skillet and add reserved sauce. Cook, tossing occasionally, until sauce is thickened, about 3 minutes. Serve with steamed rice and garnish with scallion greens.