Savory Puerto Rican Meat Dishes
Puerto Rico, our favorite Caribbean island is well-known for its scenic natural landscape, diverse culture, and, of course, its savory meals. Puerto Rico is home to some of the tastiest dishes one can ever hope to experience. Puerto Rican meat dishes are particularly admired and loved for their brilliant and spicy flavors. Popular meals in Puerto Rico have various roots from numerous ethnic groups that immigrated to this country long ago from places in Africa, Europe and other Central and South American countries. Throughout the course of this article, one will learn how to prepare some authentic Puerto Rican, meat-oriented dishes.
One of the most popular meat-centered meals in Puerto Rico is undoubtedly Puerto Rican beef stew. Carne guisada Puertorriqueña, as the locals lovingly refer to it, is a hearty beef stew that consists of beef, bell peppers and various seasonings. The best recipes for this ethnic dish will include oregano, bay leaves, potatoes, onion, cilantro, peppers, tomato sauce and other vegetables. Creating this dish is relatively simple and begins with browning the meat via stove in a dutch oven or a large quart pot. Next, add some water and gradually add all the spices and herbs. Once this combination has come to a boil, lower the heat and let it simmer for about an hour or so before increasing the heat to medium-high and adding the potatoes and vegetables. Be sure to bring the mixture back up to a boil before reducing the heat again. Finally, this rich stew is ready to be enjoyed when the meat is tender. Feel free to add rice or top with a dash of salt and pepper.
Another wildly popular meal in Puerto Rico is chicken breast cooked with sherry, or pechuga de pollo con jerez. This dish is very simple to make and utilizes the compatible, tangy pairing of chicken and wine. Be sure to always begin this process by thoroughly rinsing the chicken with water. After cleaning the chicken, pat dry, cut into uniform strips and season with salt and pepper. An essential healthy addition to this meal is garlic. Mince up a few gloves and rub it over the chicken. The next step involves heating up a deep pan on the stove and adding a nice coating of olive oil. Once the olive oil spreads evenly around the pan, add the chicken, avoiding high heat, so the garlic and chicken do not burn. Allow the chicken to cook until it is brown on each side,then remove it from the stove. In a separate pan, heat up another tablespoon of olive oil, then add sherry. Be sure to use a 1/3 cup of sherry per chicken breast. Sauteed mushrooms and onions make a great topping for this dish.
The wonderful thing about these dishes is that they can be tweaked, in terms of seasonings and toppings, based on preference. As seen in this article, Puerto Rican dishes are rather easy to make and well worth it.
Alan Robbins is writer and editor for Lone Mountain wagyu beef. He is a certifiable meat afficionado, who loves nothing more than trying new recipes.