Carne Guisada

Taco Cabana Copycat Recipe

4 pounds of chuck or bottom round beef, cut into 1 inch cubes
4 tablespoons of peanut oil
1 medium onion, diced (about 1 cup)
5 cloves of garlic, minced (about 1/4 cup)
1 (14.05 oz.) can of diced tomatoes or 3 fresh tomatoes, diced
2 jalapeno peppers, diced
2 serrano peppers, diced
1 tablespoon cumin
1 tablespoon chili powder
1 teaspoon oregano
1/2 cup of chopped cilantro
1 bay leaf
2 cups of water
1 (12 oz. )bottle of dark Mexican beer such as Negro Modelo
1 tablespoon of flour (optional)

In a large pot or a Dutch oven, brown the beef on medium high heat in 2 tablespoons of the peanut oil, may have to do in batches. Remove beef from pot, add the final 2 tablespoons of peanut oil and cook on medium heat the onions and chiles for about 10 minutes or until the onions are translucent. Add the garlic and cook for another minute.

Throw in the browned beef, add the herbs, spices, water, tomatoes and beer and mix everything really well. Turn up the heat to high, bring the stew to a boil and then turn heat down to low and simmer for five hours, stirring occasionally. At this point, some of the meat will have turned to strings thus thickening the gravy.

Notes: If you want your meat to be distinct cubes rather than strings, lessen the cooking time. If you cook the stew for less time, you may also need to add some flour to thicken the gravy. Take out a 1/4 cup of the cooking liquid, stir into it a 1 tablespoon of flour and then incorporate this back into the stew. Stir until gravy has thickened. If you prefer smaller pieces, cut the meat into 1/2 inch cubes.

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