Picadillo is one of those dishes that is a staple in every Mexican household. It’s super easy to make and kids tend to love it. It was one of my favorites growing up. In northern Mexico it is traditionally made with ground beef, onions, garlic, chiles, and potatoes. In southern and central Mexico they add raisins, olives, and even fruit.
You can also find picadillo in other Latin American countries. Perhaps the most famous is the Cuban version, which consists of ground or shredded beef, onions, peppers, potatoes, olives, and capers. For this version I have substituted lentils for the beef and spiced it with cumin, oregano, and chipotle peppers. Serve with warm corn tortillas and Mexican rice. Enjoy!
- ½ lb. Lentils, brown, cleaned and picked
- ½ ea. Onion, yellow
- ¼ ea. Onion, yellow, finely chopped
- 1 ea. Bay leaf
- 1 tbsp. Olive oil
- 2 ea. Garlic cloves, minced
- 1 ea. Chipotle, in adobo
- 3 ea. Plum tomatoes, large
- 1 ea. Carrot, peeled, diced
- 1 ea. Russet potato, small, diced
- ½ tsp. Cumin, ground
- ¼ tsp. Oregano, dry
- 3 cups Vegetable broth or lentil cooking liquid
- Place lentils in a medium pot and cover with water. Add bay leaf and half of your onion, left whole. Bring to a boil and turn heat down to a simmer. Let simmer for 15 min, until lentils are slightly tender. Set aside.
- Place tomatoes and chipotle pepper in blender, and process until smooth. Set aside.
- Place olive oil into a large pot and set over medium heat. Add ¼ of an onion, finely chopped, and sweat for 2-3 minutes. Add minced garlic and sweat for 3 minute more.
- Drain lentils and reserve cooking liquid. Pour lentils into pot and stir to combine with onion and garlic.
- Pour the tomato-chipotle mixture into the pot and let cook for 2 min. or until you notice that the tomato puree is changing into a dark red color.
- Add 3 cups of the lentil cooking liquid, diced carrot and potato, cumin, oregano, and season to taste.
- Bring to a simmer and cook until vegetable are tender, about 20 min.
- If the picadillo seems too dry, feel free to add more cooking liquid as needed. Omit the chipotle pepper to make this recipe kid-friendly.
Where have I been in the last month? Where do I even begin? First of all, welcome to the new Dora’s Table. We have made a full transition to plant-based Mexican recipes, however you will still be able to find the non-vegan recipes posted in the last 3 yrs. Be patient with me while I’m figuring out all the kinks of running a self-hosted blog. All feedback and comments are appreciated.
In other news, we have moved back to CA! It has been a crazy month, you can’t even imagine. We are all settled in now and I’m ready to get back to blogging. Our little baby Karina is growing like crazy and Dylan is pretty happy about kindergarten, and so is this mama;) We love it here. We always did. I’m also getting excited about cooking all over again with the wide array of ingredients available here.
Hi lovely readers. I’m currently trying to move all of my content from wordpress.com to wordpress.org and I am not being very successful at it. Hopefully the site will be up shortly.
How does a professionally trained cook (personal chef) meal plan at home? You would think it would be a breeze, and that said chef would wouldn’t even think twice about it. Ironically, it took me a little bit of time to set a system that worked for our family.
Mostly because there’s a couple of major differences between cooking at a restaurant and cooking at home. To start with, in a restaurant you would have a dishwasher (person) who would take care of all your dishes, pots and pans; you would also have at your disposal a great variety of high quality ingredients and some of them would be prepped already for you (already peeled garlic, chopped fresh herbs, already was he produce and fish already cut into portions); finally, you would have at least 3 hours to prepare your food before service.
At home you have to think about what meals will use less pots and pans, because inevitably you will be the one washing the big stack of dishes. You also have to juggle children and maybe work. (Cooking with a kid stuck to your leg can get pretty frustrating.) Also, the average person has to plan meals on a limited budget and does not have quality ingredients in abundance.
Here are several tips that will hopefully help you develop your own meal planning system with meals your family will actually enjoy, and that will cut your stress and time in half.
I was in bed at 9:30pm last night! I put both kids down and then laid down for a bit, thinking I would just close my eyes for a second and then go wash the dishes, but it did not happen quite like that.
We had an amazing southern meal for dinner: fried okra with lemon mayonnaise, frog more stew (spicy cajun sausage, shrimp, potatoes, corn, and old bay), and chess pies with blueberries. We cooked the meal ourselves , which always leads to me ask my hubby why we even bother eating out.
It was after this wonderful dinner that we ended asleep before 10pm. Sometimes I have no idea how tired I am until my head hits the pillow. Having two kids is definitely more energy and time consuming than having one. Still, I try to enjoy the little things, like making blueberry pancakes on Saturday morning, and sitting around the kitchen table in our pjs watching those little hands and faces get sticky with maple syrup. It’s moments like those that I know we are making wonderful memories for our children that inevitably will be associated with the aroma and flavor of fluffy blueberry pancakes. What are some of your favorite food memories?
- 1 cup flour, all-purpose
- 1/2 cup flour, whole wheat
- 3 1/2 tsp. baking powder
- 1 tsp salt, kosher
- 2 tbsp. sugar, granulated
- 1 cup almond milk
- 2 tsp. vinegar, apple cider
- 1 tbsp. flaxseed, ground
- 1/2 cup water
- 3 tbsp. canola oil
- 1/2 tsp. vanilla, extract
- 1 cup blueberries, frozen
- Sift flour, baking powder, sugar and salt into a large bowl.
- In a small bowl combine the almond milk, ground flaxseed, and vinegar. Mix well.
- Add water, vanilla extract, and canola oil to the almond milk mixture. Whisk to incorporate.
- Make a well in the center of the flour bowl and add liquid mixture. Whisk until a lumpy batter forms.
- Let rest for 10 min.
- To cook pancakes, heat a skillet to medium-low heat and grease lightly. Pour batter onto pan and place 6 – 7 frozen blueberries on the pancake batter. Let cook for about 4 min. or until fluffy and golden brown.
- Flip and cook pancake on other side for 3 more minutes.
- Serve with maple syrup.
- The granulated sugar can be substituted with 2 tbsp. of maple syrup or 1 ½ tbsp. of agave nectar.