Recipe of the Week: Picadillo (Latin America)
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There are many ways to make this Latin American dish with some variation on the ingredients below. It has a lovely complex flavor and the mix also makes a great filling for burritos (Global Vegetarian Cookbook, p 76) or empanadas (p 88). Achiote oil uses annatto (bixa) seeds which give color and flavor. You could use ordinary oil instead and add ½ tsp of turmeric.
Serves: 2 - 4
Preparation: 15 minutes
Cooking: 25 minutes
- 1-2 onions, chopped
- 1-2 green or red bell peppers, chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, crushed
- ½ tsp cayenne pepper
- ¼-½ tsp turmeric *
- 1 can black beans, drained
- 4 tomatoes, chopped or 1 can tomatoes
- 1 tbsp sultanas or raisins
- 2 tbsp capers
- 1-2 tsp ground cumin
- 1 tsp oregano
- ½ tsp thyme
- 12 green olives
- ¼ cup / 60 ml achiote oil *
- salt and pepper
1 Heat the oil in a large pan. Put in the onions and cook until soft. Then add the bell peppers, garlic and cayenne, plus the turmeric if using. Fry gently for a few minutes to soften the peppers.
2 Next, add the beans, tomatoes, sultanas or raisins, capers, cumin, oregano and thyme. Season, and stir.
3 Reduce the heat now and leave to simmer for 10-15 minutes to deepen the flavors. Now put in the olives and simmer for a few more minutes to warm them through. Serve with potatoes or rice.
* To make achiote oil, heat ½ cup/50 g annatto seeds in 1 cup/240 ml vegetable oil. Boil until oil is deep bright orange. Strain seeds from oil. Instead of this you can use ordinary vegetable oil and add ½ tsp turmeric, to give the color.