Cuban Picadillo


Cuban Picadillo served with yellow saffron rice.

I have been accused of being a vegetarian. I would like to state for the record that this is not true. A reader said that they like my blog “despite” the fact that they “LOVE meat”. I realize that I’ve been posting a number of meatless dishes lately, this has been  a) in the interest of health and b) because many of these things are side dishes masquerading as main courses.

I went to the grocery store with my husband the other day. We were picking up our weekly food supply which included ingredients for Cuban Beef Picadillo. As I reached for the ground beef my husband, who lives with high cholesterol and has heart conditions that run in his family, said “What are you trying to do, kill me?” This could be cited as a reason to go to the store alone but no! I put the red meat back and picked up some lean ground turkey instead. The resulting dish is a leaner and less fatty but equally appetizing main course for a hungry carnivore.

  • 1 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 yellow onion, chopped
  • 1.5 lbs lean ground beef or turkey
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tsp Chipotle chili powder
  • ¾ tsp cinnamon
  • ½ tsp ground cloves
  • 1 28oz can diced tomatoes
  • 1 ¾ cups beef or chicken broth
  • 2 tbsp tomato paste
  • ¼ cup red wine vinegar
  • salt & pepper
  • rice to serve with

In a large deep frying pan, heat the oil and sauté the onion over medium high heat 3-4 minutes. Add the meat and begin to brown for 7-8 minutes, breaking up any clumps. Add the garlic, chili powder, cinnamon, cloves and stir for one minute. Add the tomatoes with their juice, broth, tomato paste and vinegar. Add salt & pepper to taste. Reduce to medium and cook, uncovered for 10-15 minutes. When the mixture has thickened, serve over rice.


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