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This Colombian dish has the true flavors of the area. For some reason butchers here in the U.S.of A. have quit cutting Flank Steak and are pushing Sirloin, etc (A more expensive cut of meat). When i can't find the flank steak, I will use the Skirt Steak intended for use with fajitas.
- 2 lbs flank steaks, trimmed of all fat
- 1 1⁄2 teaspoons salt
- fresh ground pepper
- 3 teaspoons vegetable oil (for marinade)
- 1 cup coarsely chopped onion
- 1⁄2 cup diced celery
- 1 teaspoon minced garlic
- 4 small tomatoes
- 3 teaspoons oil (for frying)
- 2 cups water
- 12 ounces beer
- 1⁄2 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- Marinate the meat overnight with the salt, pepper, vegetable oil, onions, celery, garlic, and tomatoes.
- The next day, heat 3 tsp oil over high heat in a heavy Dutch oven and add the steak; brown it quickly on all sides without burning.
- Transfer the steak to a plate and sauté the vegetables until they are soft but not brown.
- Return the meat to the Dutch oven. Pour in the water and beer and bring to a boil.
- Cover the Dutch oven and cook slowly for about two hours until the meat is tender. The last hour of cooking add the final ½ tsp of salt and the 1 tsp of ground cumin.
- Finally remove the flank steak and put on an oven-proof plate. Top with onions, etc., and brown under the broiler.
I've made this twice for my husband who is from Colombia. The first time I made it we found it lacked in flavor, so the second time around I made some changes. I used 1/2 the amount of steak (but still used the same amount of tomato, onion, etc), eliminated the celery and used extra garlic and then also sprinkled garlic powder, salt, and pepper directly on the steak before searing. We felt that the beer didn't really add flavor, so I used red wine instead. This made a huge difference and it turned out excellent.
My Colombian husband has been talking about this dish for years so I finally decided to track down a recipe and make it for him. It turned out really well! I made it almost exactly as in the recipe (although I forgot the cumin). Both my husband and my stepson thought it tasted great and as it should according to their Colombian tastebuds. Red meat is not my favorite but prepared like this I liked it, too.