Tuesday, December 27, 2011
Beef Mechado - Free Filipino Recipes by Pinoy Life Style
Beef Mechado is a Filipino dish, sometimes spelled mitsado or metsado in Tagalog language. It is the equivalent of Beef Stew in America. Mechado is one of the favorite dishes among Filipino families as part of weekly menu or on occasion and gatherings. Aside from beef, other meat like pork and chicken can be substituted for it.
Mechado is the usual stew served at our dinner table. A friend of mine recently introduced me to this most delicious variant of beef stew. While it’s not far off from the familiar “local style” beef stew, what sets Mechado apart is the flavor imparted by the chopped and sliced red bell peppers,accentuated by the depth of the soy sauce, along with the Bay Leaves to round it out.
The dish originated from a Spanish recipe whose name originally referred to the strips of pork back-fat that are threaded (mecha – wick) through thick pieces of cheaper lean beef to render them more tender and less dry. The larded pieces of beef are then marinated in vinegar, soya sauce, calamansi juice, crushed garlic, black pepper and bay leaf, browned quickly on all sides in hot oil or lard and then slowly braised in its marinade with the addition of soup stock, onion slices, and tomatoes until tender and the liquid is reduced to a thick flavorful gravy.
Beef tongue can be similarly treated with little or no variation to produce another dish called Lengua Mechada.
Beef Mechado Recipe
* 1 kilo of beef cut into chunks
* 1/8 kilo of pork fat cut into strips
* 4 onions, peeled and quartered
* 5 medium potatoes, quartered (optional: fried)
* 1 medium sized carrot, sliced in 1/2″ sections
* Red bell pepper, sliced
* 2 cups beef stock or 2 bouillon cubes dissolved in water
* 3 bay leaves (laurel leaves)
* 1/4 -cup vinegar
* 2 cups tomato sauce or 1/2 cup tomato paste
* 1 cup soy sauce
* salt & pepper to taste
Estimated cooking time: 1 hour
1. Cut an incision on the beef chunks and insert a pork strip in the middle (mitsa)
2. In a casserole, combine the beef (with the fat), tomato sauce, soy sauce, bay leaves and beef stock. Bring to a boil and simmer until the beef is almost tender.
3. Add the vinegar and let boil for a minute or two.
4. Add the potatoes, onions, carrot, and bell pepper.
5. Let simmer until potatoes and carrots are cooked – occasionally stir to thicken sauce.
Beef Mechado Cooking Tips:
* Pressure cook the beef with the beef stock for faster cooking time.
* Fry the potatoes before adding to the casserole.
* Add 2 to 3 tablespoons of olive oil and stir when the mechado dish is almost done for added flavor.
** Serve hot with white rice