Bittman: Spicy Braised Beef with Lime

Beef with cilantro

This week I am making recipes out of Mark Bittman’s encyclopedic masterpiece How to Cook  Everything. I flipped through the book over the weekend, went shopping without a list this afternoon, and then referred back to Bittman for those recipes that inspired me in the first place.

I chose this meal as one of the options from “Beef Stew, Eight Ways.”  It’s fairly basic: brown up to 2 lbs of cubed beef in 2 tbs peanut oil, remove beef from pan, pour 1.5 cups chicken or beef stock into pan and scrape browned bits from the bottom. When broth comes to a boil add in 1-2 hot chilis, 1 tbs of diced garlic, and at least one lime’s worth of zest and put the meat back in. Simmer covered and undisturbed for 30-45 minutes until beef is tender. Serve over brown rice with tons of lime juice and some cilantro.

Spices for braising: chilis, lime rind, and garlic

This is a good, simple meal with a lot of flavor and heat. I wish the sauce had more depth but even the addition of ginger and lemongrass didn’t add much. I used chicken broth this time and will probably use beef broth next. In any case, Bittman’s recipes are almost always reliable and tasty and this is no exception. Enjoy!

Beef with Rice


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