Given that the Canary Islands were a key pit stop in the early voyages to and from the New World, it’s no wonder that Canarian culture includes many Latin American elements. Case in point: ropa vieja. This famously Cuban main dish also happens to be a Canarian favourite. The ropa vieja recipe we bring you today is another wonderful creation by Canarian chef Afi that we’ve adapted for English-language cooks. It includes a delicious beef & chicken stew, and soup as a by-product — which you can serve immediately with your noodles of choice, or freeze for later. Enjoy!
Canarian Ropa Vieja + Soup
Preparation time: 1 h 20 min total
Note: Soak the chickpeas a day in advance.
What you’ll need:
- 200 g chickpeas pre-soaked in hot water mixed with 1 tsp. of baking soda
- a pressure cooker, a heavy saucepan
- 1/2 chicken
- 600 g beef tenderloin
- 1 leek
- several fresh celery leaves
- 3 medium tomatoes
- 1 red pepper
- 1 small green pepper
- fresh parsley
- 1 tbs. thyme
- mint to taste
- 1 tbs. paprika
- 1 onion
- 2-3 cloves of garlic
- 1 cup white wine
salt & pepper to taste.
- 1-2 medium potatoes per person
- noodles, if you’ll be serving the soup immediately.
What to do:
1. Fill the pressure cooker with the meat, leek, celery leaves, 1 tomato and small green pepper. All these ingredients go in whole. Cover with 1.5-2 litres of cold water, add some mint and bring to a boil.
2. Once the water in the pressure cooker begins boiling, add the pre-soaked (and drained) chickpeas. Fasten the lid and cook for 25 min from the moment the pot starts whistling.
3. Strain the liquid from the pressure cooker. To serve as soup immediately add salt, pepper and some more mint to taste, along with your choice of noodles. Alternatively, cool in a covered dish and freeze for later use.
4. Remove any bones from the meat and chop it. Heat the olive oil in a heavy saucepan and fry the chickpeas until crisp. Remove and reserve in a large bowl (that will ultimately receive the entire stew). Fry the meat well in the same pan adding salt and pepper to taste. Add the fried meat to the chickpeas.
5. To prepare the sauce, heat oil in a saucepan and add the chopped onion and red pepper. Once the two have begun to simmer, add the remaining two tomatoes, peeled and diced.
6. Once the sauce has begun to boil, add the paprika and thyme, and the cup of white wine. Cook for another 5-10 min, then add to the bowl with the meat and chickpeas.
7. Lastly, peel and cut the potatoes into medium-large chunks, then fry them.
8. Add the fried potatoes to the large bowl with everything else and mix well. Garnish with some chopped fresh parsley and enjoy!