Growing up, my dad never went to the grocery store with a grocery list.
On Saturday mornings he would call out that we were heading to the grocery store and my brother and I would groan, knowing that this meant that we would be at the store for at least 2 hours, slowly winding up and down each aisle and running our fingers over the sales prices while my dad looked for produce and meat that were on sale for the week.
My mom would take a look at our haul when we came back and would always know what to do with the ingredients we brought back with us.
One of our childhood dishes was a hearty “stew” where she would simmer ground beef, tomatoes, potatoes, and carrots with onions, garlic, ginger, and bay leaves. It’d slow cook on the stove in the afternoon, then she would serve it over steamed basmati rice for dinner. Reminiscent of the filipino dish giniling, it was an inexpensive meal that would last our family of four an entire week
- 2 lb. ground beef
- 2 red potatoes
- 1 green bell pepper, diced
- 1 large yellow onion, diced
- 4 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 tomatoes, diced
- 8 ounces tomato sauce
- 2 tsp cumin
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp dried oregano
- 2 bay leaves
- 3 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil, divided
- 1/4 - 1/2 cup low-sodium broth
- 2/3 cup of olives, halved + 2 - 3 tbsp of brine
- kosher salt & pepper, to taste
- white rice, for serving
- In a small pot, bring potatoes and water to a boil and cover. Let simmer for 20 minutes, then set aside to cool.
- In a large pot, heat olive oil on medium high, then add the onion and bell pepper. Saute until the bell peppers are tender and onions translucent, about 8-9 minutes. Add garlic and stir for an additional minute. Add the ground beef, breaking it up as your stir, until browned. Drain extra grease.
- Add the seasonings: cumin, oregano, cinnamon, and kosher salt and pepper. Stir for 1-2 minutes, then add in the tomatoes, tomato sauce, and broth. Add bay leaves and chopped olives and brine, then lower heat to low and simmer covered for 20-30 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- In the meantime, peel and chop potatoes into 1/2 inch pieces. Heat a small skillet with olive oil. When oil is hot, add the potatoes and quickly fry.
- When it is nearly time to remove the picadillo from the stove, taste the seasonings and add more salt or pepper, if necessary. Add the potatoes, and serve over warm white rice.