Prep 30 mins
Cook 45 mins
We do not know whether or not this dish is originally from Cuba. We can only assume that this dish was introduced to the Philippines by the Spaniards. “Arroz” means rice. Arroz a la Cubana is basically a stew using ground beef instead of chunks, and served with fried egg (sunny side up!), slices of fried saba bananas and steamed or boiled rice. Saba banana has thick yellow-brownish skin and is never eaten raw. It can be boiled or steamed in its skin, peeling it just before eating. This humble banana can be transformed to a numberof simple yet amazing and nutritious desserts. For your convenience, use plantain similar to one used in Carribean cuisine. Serve with plain boiled rice.
- 1⁄2 kg ground beef (use sirloin or top round)
- 3 carrots, cut in small cubes
- 3 potatoes, cut in small cubes
- 1⁄2 cup peas
- 2 small bell peppers, cut in thin strips (red and green bell peppers make the dish look festive)
- 2 tablespoons raisins (optional)
- 1 tablespoon minced garlic
- 1 large onion, chopped
- 2 tomatoes, chopped
- 1 cup tomato sauce
- finely chopped fresh parsley, to taste
- 1 pinch basil
- 1 bay leaf
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 tablespoons light soy sauce
- 1⁄4 cup vegetable oil
- salt and pepper
- 6 eggs, fried sunny-side-up
- 4 large plantains, each sliced diagonally into 3, fried
- Heat a heavy skillet. Add 1/4 cup of cooking oil. Heat to smoking point. Add the cubed potatoes and carrots. Stir-fry until the edges turn light brown. Remove with a slotted spoon and drain on paper towels.
- Pour off the oil from the skillet. Add ground beef, breaking it up. Lightly season with salt and pepper, add soy sauce. Cook over high heat until the meat is no longer pink.
- Add the garlic, chopped onions, bell peppers and raisins, if using. Cook, stirring, just until the vegetables start to soften. Add bay leaf.
- Add the tomato sauce. Stir to blend well. Add peas. Stir and cook then add in the stir-fried carrots and potatoes. Simmer to absorb the sauce. Add the basil and parsley. Give it one last stir then turn off the heat. Remove bay leaf.
- Serve with rice, an egg and fried bananas on the side.