Today I felt like some comfort food, so had a flick through my favourite Paleo recipe resources to see what I could find. I came up with a recipe for Braised Mexican Beef, and found another for Creamy Spinach. It was time to get cracking!
First to make the Salsa Asada
For this I used 500g of tomatoes, 1 green chilli 3 garlic cloves, 1/2 teaspoon of salt, juice from 1/2 a lime, 1 large shallot and some fresh coriander.
I placed the garlic and chilli in a hot pan, and kept on turning it until it was nice and charred. This took 10-15 mins. You will see there were 2 chillies in there, but in the end, for me, one was enough on the spice front. I also left the garlic unpeeled to protect it a bit.
Once they were under way, I turned my attention to the tomatoes. I started with my blow torch but lost interest so put them under a hot grill for about ten minutes. I kept an eye on them until they were nice and charred.
Once the garlic and chilli was cold enough to peel, I put it in the food processor with 1/2 teaspoon of salt and blitzed it up.
I then added the tomatoes, charred bits and all, chopped up and added the coriander and squeezed into the juice from 1/2 a lime. After a good stir and taste, I poured it into a plastic container and left to one side. It was looking and tasting great if I do say so myself. This recipe makes far more than you need, but the left overs will taste great with any beef, chicken or fish dish.
Now onto the Beef.
I put the beef, which I used braising steak for, in a bowl with 1/2 teaspoon of salt and a tablespoon of chilli powder.
I then sliced up some onions on my amazing Mandolin slicer and gently fried them up till they went translucent with 1 tablespoon of coconut oil. Once gently cooked, I added 1 tablespoon of tomato purée, 1 cup of beef stock, 4 cloves of garlic and 1/4 cup of the salsa into my Dutch Oven.
I then added the beef, and once it came to the boil, I put in the oven set at 140 degrees for 2.5 hours.
My Dutch Oven / Casserole of choice is the LeCreuset one. You can always find a good deal on Amazon for them.
With about 20 mins to go, I started on the Creamy Spinach. I took one packet and gave it a good wash, and as I didn’t want it to watery, whacked it into my salad spinner to drain all the water off.
To cook I simply heat up the pan until it was nice and hot, then emptied the spinach in with a splash of water, put the lid on and left it for about 2 mins. When the spinach had wilted, I took it back out, and put it back in the spinner to remove any excess water.
While the spinach was draining, I gently fried up 1 sliced onion and another minced clove of garlic. When they had softened, which took about 4 mins, I added back the spinach, and then added 1/4 cup of Coconut milk.
The Biona brand is my favourite and can be bought from Amazon. We are an organic household so this does the trick. With that added, I let it boil for another 3-4 mins, had a quick taste, threw in a little pinch of Maldon Sea Salt.
Then it was time to plate up. I served the spinach and braised beef, topped with some sliced radish and a big spoonful of the salsa to freshen the dish up. I gave a big squeeze of lime, and then as usual, cleaned my plate!
So yes, this did take about 30 mins to prep and the best part of 3 hours to cook, but the end result was tasty, but more important, organic, unprocessed and healthy. Who said good food had to contain lashings of butter and sugar. Its just not true. Good ingredients, sympathetic cooking and a kitchen Geek!
Let me know what you think!!