Saturday, January 26, 2008

Vaca Frita, Yuca con Mojo, White Rice, Black Beans and an Avocado Salad!

So as many of you might know, I recently posted a poll where I asked which was your favorite Cuban dish. Vaca Frita was the winner and I promised to make it soon. Since I am a woman of my word I made it tonight. I made Yuca as a side dish- this is the Yuca Diaries after all huh? This was served with white rice, black beans and a yummy avocado and pineapple salad. So without further ado... here's how you make it.

Vaca Frita:

2 lbs Flank steak

The juice of 1 1/2 limes

5 large garlic cloves

1/4 of an onion

1 1/2 tsbp canola oil

4 cups water

Take your flank steak and put it in a pressure cooker with 4 cups of water. If you don't have a pressure cooker you can use a crock pot, but this will take several hours. Turn the heat up to medium high.

Once the meat is tender take it out of the pot and place it on a cutting board to cool a bit. Peel your onion and coarsely slice.  Cut and squeeze the juice of 1 1/2 limes into a bowl. With a garlic press or microplane, grate the garlic cloves into the bowl with the lime juice. Next shred the meat with your hands and add salt.  Add the mixture of Lime juice and garlic to the meat.

Transfer the meat onto a skillet set on high heat. Add the onions. Once the onions are cooked through and some pieces of meat are crispy, remove from the skillet and serve.


1 package frozen Yuca

3 large garlic cloves

The juice of 1 sour orange (or if you can't find this you can use lime)

1/2 of an onion

salt to taste

3 tspb. extra virgin olive oil

Open the bag of yuca and throw into a pressure cooker. Make sure the yuca has about 1" of water covering it, before closing the lid on the pot and salt the water to taste. Cook for 15 minutes on med-high heat or until tender.  In a large saute pan add the canola oil and onions. Saute the onions on med-high heat for 5 minutes. Run the garlic through a press or microplane and add to a bowl. Add the sour orange or lime juice and then add to the pan where the onions are. Continue to cook for about 3 minutes on med-high heat. Once the yuca is cooked, drain it and add it to the saute pan. The mixture of lime juice, garlic and oil is known as Mojo in Spanish. It's pronounced Mo-ho. Mix the ingredients and then transfer to a ceramic or metal container. Add the oil to the saute pan and heat until it get really hot. Add the hot oil to the container where the yuca is and mix.

Avocado Salad:

2 ripe Hass Avocados or 1 Florida Avocado

2 tbsp crushed pineapple

A few slices of red onion

salt to taste

Slice the avocado. Thinly slice a small piece of red onion. Add 1 to 2 tbsp of crushed pineapple on top of the avocado and onion. Mix olive oil and vinegar and drizzle over the top of the salad.

I cheated a bit this time and did not make the black beans from scratch. I opened a can of black beans and doctored them up a bit. I cut up some onion, green peppers, and garlic and sauteed with olive oil. Next I added a splash of vinegar and a splash of the left over mojo and served in a small bowl. Black beans are such a key item in Cuban cuisine that I felt it needed a post all on its own.

1 comment:

Nathan said...

I have never had Vaca Frita everytime we would buy the flank steak my grandma would always want to make "Ropa Vieja" instead haha, but I will for sure make this, damn I wish I had some "Naranja Agria" it would make it taste way better but I can't get ahold of it easily (rarily only when I visit friends that have the tree) so I have to use limes just like you.

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