Cuban Ropa Vieja Stew
6 oz. bacon, roughly chopped
2 lb. flank steak, cut into 1½″ strips
Kosher salt and black pepper, to taste
1 medium yellow onion, thinly sliced
1 red bell pepper, thinly sliced
1 green bell pepper, thinly sliced
1 tbsp. cumin
1 tbsp. dried thyme
1 tbsp. dried oregano
5 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 bay leaf
6 oz. tomato paste
½ cup dry white wine
2 cups reduced sodium chicken broth
1 (16-oz.) can whole peeled tomatoes
½ cup halved, pitted green olives
⅓ cup sliced jarred pimiento peppers
1 tbsp. white wine vinegar
¼ cup roughly chopped cilantro
1) Heat a 6-quart or large Dutch oven (or other heavy-bottomed pot) on a burner over medium-high heat. Add the bacon and cook, about 5 minutes, until the fat has rendered and the bacon has cooked. Remove the bacon pieces with a slotted spoon and set aside on a plate.
2) Season the sliced steak with salt and pepper. Working in batches, add steak to the hot Dutch oven in a single layer and cook until browned on both sides, about 6 minutes.
3) Transfer to a plate and repeat with the remaining steak pieces.
4) Add the onion and peppers and cook about 4 minutes, until soft. Add the cumin, thyme, oregano, garlic, bay leaf, and tomato paste and cook for a further 3 minutes.
5) Pour in the wine and use a wooden spoon to scrape the fond up from the bottom of the pot as it deglazes. Return the bacon and steak to the pot.
6) Add the stock and tomatoes and continue to cook over medium-high heat until the contents come to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium-low, cover, and let cook 2 hours or until steak is tender.
Stir in the olives, pimientos, and vinegar.
7) Let cook uncovered a further 30 minutes, then taste and add salt as needed. Serve topped with fresh cilantro.