Date I made this recipe: February 7, 2010 (Super Bowl Sunday)Three Guys from Miami Cook Cuban
by Glenn Lindgren, Raul Musibay, and Jorge Castillo
Published by: Gibbs Smith, Publisher
ISBN: 1-58685-433-X; © 2004
Recipe: Boliche ? Cuban Pot Roast ? p. 112
So today was Super Bowl Sunday, one of my favorite days to watch TV because as we all know, it?s all about the commercials. And the game. But if we?re honest, it?s really about the commercials, right? The thing that cracks me up is that I didn?t want to leave the room during the commercials but I didn?t want to miss key plays of the game, either. And for the record, it was quite the game. I liked both teams (the New Orleans Saints v. the Indianapolis Colts) but was leaning toward New Orleans (especially after they beat the evil Vike-Queens and stopped their advance to the show) and toyed with making something from one of my New Orleans cookbooks but thought that would be rather unfair, seeing as how I don?t have anything to represent Indianapolis. (Although I do have cookbooks from Baltimore and seeing as how I still think of Baltimore Colts as the home of the Colts (not to mention Johnny Unitas), that would have worked?except it wouldn?t, you know what I mean?).
So to even the playing field, I made a recipe from a Miami cookbook to represent where the game was actually played and since Cuban food represents a big part of Miami?s edible offerings, I went with the three guys from Miami (one of whom is originally from Minnesota ? guess which one!).
Now in the interest of full disclosure, when I first got the cookbook, I made the recipe for the Tres Leches (3 milks) cake but it didn?t work out very well, in all likelihood because I had dry ingredients that were just past their ?use by? date. Baking is a funny thing as fresh ingredients are often keys to the recipe?s success whereas in regular cooking, they often don?t make that much difference.
Now I have to say a word about the Spanish chorizo called for in this recipe. Although the recipe itself didn?t say anything about what kind of chorizo to buy, the back of the book said that chorizo is a ?dry, hard sausage? and I know this to be true since I bought some dry links one time at El Burrito Mercado in West St. Paul. But the day I went shopping, we were pressed for time and so I bought chorizo from my local Rainbow Foods that was not dry but rather very wet, just like regular sausage and it did not come in a casing as the other sausage did. And this made the recipe greasier than would have otherwise happened. The taste was still the same, which is to say it added a little bite to the meat, but we could have probably done without the grease. So just be aware of that when making the recipe.
The other thing I have to say is that I thought this dish would be more flavorful the next day but having just polished off some leftovers, I can say that the dish was tastier yesterday when it was fresh from the stove than it was today. That?s not to say the dish still wasn?t delicious, but it wasn?t what I expected.
What I liked best about this dish was that it involved my favorite cooking task?stick it on the stove and ignore it for a couple of hours. And seeing as how I had the Super Bowl commercials to watch (all 68 of them ? yikes!), I just couldn?t be bothered with something more complex to make (even though I have a TV in my kitchen. But I mean one wrong move when watching the game or the commercials and I could have lost a thumb!).
So congratulations, Saints, better luck next time Colts, and Betty White, you made me want to go out and buy a case of Snickers bars, you were so funny in that commercial. And to see Abe ?I thought he was dead? Vigoda was priceless. (For those who don?t know, for years now, radio shows have been doing this ?Dead/Not Dead? contest featuring celebrities and someone always assumes that poor Abe has died when in fact, he?s still going strong. Abe is best known for his role as ?Fish? on the TV show Barney Miller). I?m going to have to track down a recipe for Snickers pie or something or maybe go the deep fried route like they do at the Minnesota State Fair where there are two food groups?things that are deep fried and things on a stick. We love us our sticks!
Boliche ? Cuban Pot Roast ? serves 6 to 8
6 links Spanish chorizo
3 to 4 pounds chuck or rump roast
7 cloves garlic, mashed
1 teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon pepper
½ cup olive oil
1 (14 ½-ounce) can diced tomatoes
1 bay leaf
1 tablespoon oregano
4 medium potatoes, quartered
1 large onion, sliced
¼ cup green olives
1 cup water
½ cup red wine
Remove casings from the chorizo. Cut a slit in the beef and insert the chorizo and some of the garlic inside. Salt, pepper and lightly flour the roast; brown on all sides in a frying pan with the olive oil. Place all ingredients except the water and wine (including the roast and the oil you browned it in) in a large covered pot or Dutch oven with the potatoes, onion slices, and green olives on top.
Mix the water and the wine. Add just enough of this mixture to cover the bottom 2 inches of the pan. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to low and simmer partially covered (leave your lid slightly ajar to let some of the steam escape) for approximately 3 to 4 hours. Check the roast occasionally and add the water/wine mixture as necessary. When the roast is fork-tender, remove it from the pot. Remove bay leaf and discard.
Arrange meat and potatoes on a large serving platter. Garnish the plate with the cooked onion slices and green olives. Slice beef at the table.