Ingredients (Ropa Vieja):
- 1 pound flank steak
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- 1 green or red bell pepper, chopped
- 1 large garlic clove, minced
- 1 1/2 cups water
- 1 8-ounce can tomato sauce
- ½ cup sofrito
- 1 Sazon packet with coriander and annatto
- ½ cup sliced pimento-stuffed olives
- ¼ cup capers
Ingredients (Appetizer Cups):
- 1 16-ounce package Tropical Queso de Freir
- Vegetable oil For Frying
- ½ cup Tropical Crema Mexicana
- 1 tablespoon minced chipotle peppers in adobo
- Cilantro sprigs for garnish
Prepare Ropa Vieja:
Sprinkle flank steak with salt and pepper; cut steak into 4” by 3” pieces. In 4-quart saucepan over medium-high heat, in 1 tablespoon hot oil, brown beef on both sides; remove to plate. In drippings remaining in saucepan over medium heat, in remaining tablespoon oil, cook onion, pepper and garlic, about 5 minutes, stirring frequently. Add water, tomato sauce, sofrito and sazon and flank steak. Over high heat, heat mixture to boiling. Reduce heat to low; cover and simmer 45 minutes, stirring occasionally. Stir in olives and capers. Simmer 1 hour longer or until meat shreds easily with a fork, adding more water if necessary. Remove meat to large plate. Shred with 2 forks; return to saucepan.
Prepare Appetizer Cups:
Place Queso Freir on cutting board. Cut into 16 equal cubes, each about 1 ¼ by 1/1/4-inches. With small melon baller or scoop, cut a small scoop out of each square of cheese. Heat 2 inches oil to 350°F. in deep-fryer or in deep saucepan. Fry cheese cubes about 2 minutes or until browned. With slotted spoon, remove to paper towel lined plate.
In small bowl combine crema and chipotle peppers to mix well.
To serve, place appetizer cups on serving platter. Fill with Ropa Vieja. Drizzle with Chipotle Crema. Garnish with cilantro sprigs. Serves 8.