It’s a dish my mom whipped up como nada. Steak Picado, a spicy beef stir fry that melds together beautifully onions, green peppers, garlic and other seasonings and transforms even the toughest cuts of beef into mouthwatering bites. This dish is also popular in Guatemala, Panama and Cuba. Differences among countries are slight. In the Mexican version, fresh tomatoes are used while elsewhere tomato sauces and pastes may be part of the base. Like my mom, I love making this dish when I don’t have a lot of time and need a piece of beef to stretch and feed hungry mouths.
Steak Picado Recipe
Preparation time: 10 minutes
Cooking time: 50 minutes to an hour
1 ½ – lbs beef steak of choice (tenderloin, round)
2 tablespoons, vegetable oil
4-5 fresh Roma tomatoes, cut into wedges (or one large can diced)
Up to 2 cups water (see directions)
1 large white onion, thinly sliced
3 garlic cloves, chopped
1 green bell pepper (or other color), cut into 1-inch pieces
2 jalapeños, thinly sliced
2 tablespoons chili powder
1 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon dried cilantro
1 teaspoon black pepper
salt to taste
- Heat a large frying pan or cast iron skillet over medium-high heat.
- Brown the beef in skillet and drain on paper towel.
- Add oil to the skillet and heat for about one minute.
- Add the onions and cook until translucent about two minutes.
- Add the garlic, tomatoes, bell peppers, and jalapeno.
- Add back the beef.
- Stir in seasonings.
- Add water slowly to barely cover the beef and vegetable mixture; you may not need all two cups, as it really depends on the size of your frying pan. You don’t want it to become a cocido de res.
- Bring the water to a boil.
- Cover with a lid, lower the heat to medium and cook about 40 minutes, stirring frequently. Make sure to check that the liquid hasn’t completely evaporated. You want a little juice in the pan.
Serve with a side of rice and/or beans and some warm tortillas. A double margarita couldn’t hurt either!
For leftovers: I love cooking down the mixture a bit more and scrambling it with eggs. Makes for a perfect breakfast burrito.