Shredded Beef with Bell Peppers and Onions (Ropa Vieja)
Along with black beans and rice, ropa vieja, or shredded beef with bell peppers and onions, is ultimate Cuban comfort food. Undeniably, the combination of flavors is appealing to American palates, but does the dish make sense for American cooks?
Why This Recipe Works
For a ropa vieja recipe that didn’t take all day, we found a few shortcuts: We eliminated the step of making a long-simmered beef broth to add to the sauce, finding that a braising liquid of water, onions, tomato paste, and bay leaves provided our sauce with enough flavor. We shaved even more time off of our ropa vieja recipe by browning only half of the meat, which supplied plenty of deep flavor and color yet eliminated the need to brown in batches.