Shredded Cuban Beef Dinner

Sunday we went to Ethiopia.  Today we’re off to Cuba!  Below are recipes for Vaca Frita, moros y cristianos, and tostones – translation?  Cuban shredded beef, black rice (rice and black beans) and fried green plantains –


Really delicious meal!  Here’s how it’s made…

Vaca Frita


What you need:

  • 1 pounds beef – any cut works, but I used a chuck
  • Beef broth (enough to cover the beef in the crock-pot
  • ½ onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 2-3 Tablespoons of olive oil
  • ¼ cup orange juice
  • 3 Tablespoons fresh lime juice
  • 1 teaspoon lime zest
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cumin
  • lime wedges

How to Do it:

Cut the beef into chunks and put in a crockpot.  Put enough beef broth in and cover.  Cook until it falls apart – about 8 hours on low.

When the beef is done, sauté the onion and garlic in olive oil until they are soft.  Add the beef and fry on medium-high until it starts to crisp a little.  Add the remaining ingredients (except lime wedges) and simmer until the liquid evaporates.  Serve with lime wedges.

Serves 4

moros y cristianos


What you need:

  • ½ white onion, chopped
  • ½ green bell pepper, chopped
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 1 Tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 can of black beans, with liquid
  • ¾ cup chicken broth
  • 2 Tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  • ½ cup uncooked rice
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • pinch of saffron
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 bay leaf


How to Do it:

Sautee the onion and bell pepper in the olive oil until it starts to soften.  Add the can of beans with the liquid.  Using a garlic press, add the garlic. 20150817_180701_030_resized

Mix well.  Add all the remaining ingredients and stir.  Bring to a boil.  Reduce the heat and simmer until the rice is cooked through, about 35-40 minutes.  Serve hot!

Serves 4-6



What you need:

  • 4 green plantains
  • Olive oil
  • Salt

NOTE:  Plantains will begin to yellow on the shelf.  Purchase them within a day of cooking them so they stay green!


How to Do it:

Remove the peel from the plantains by removing the ends and carefully cutting the peel away.   20150817_182832_resized 20150817_182956_resized

Some may peel easily, but I used a knife (it was easiest).

Cut the fruit into 1 to 1 ½ inch chunks.


Most recipes call for deep frying, but unless you keep all the oil sitting around ready, it’s a lot more work than I wanted to do!  I just put about ½ inch of oil in the pan and fried them up that way.  Make sure you fry all sides until they are light golden brown.


Remove from the oil and let cool.  When they are cool enough to handles, smash them flat with a pan, tortilla press, or, as I did, a flat-bottomed glass.  20150817_185033_resized

Put the disks back into the oil and fry until golden.  Sprinkle with salt and serve.


Serves 4



And tomorrow – it’s Thai Chicken with Peanut Noodles!


This entry was posted in Appetizers, Beef, Cuban, Internationally Inspired, Main dish, Plantains, Rice, Side Dishes and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to Shredded Cuban Beef Dinner

  1. Jan McDonald says:

    I love this ethnic recipes – so fun to taste the different flavors!!

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