Lomo Saltado

Lomo Saltado

Lomo Saltado is a Peruvian beef stir-fry dish.  Many do not realize that there was a large Chinese and Pacific Islanders who settled in Peru, and this is how the dish was born, and became one of Peru’s national and favorite dishes.

It seems odd because it is a cross between Asian stirfry, and the incorporation of Pisco brandy and french fries.  Two carbohydrates on one plate is not typical for either Asian or South American cuisine, but here you find it on the same plate.

 I’ve had this in a few different Peruvian restaurants, and while the ingredients are surprisingly consistent, the method does vary.  Even at home, I tried to recreate it for my tastes, but the basics are still there and should not be tampered with.

I find this recipe to be cooked in three different steps. One for the rice in a rice cooker; I like McCain’s 5 minute fries in the oven. They cook really quickly (but do take more than 5 minutes to get well done and crisp).  When I eat this dish out, they mix the fries in with the vegetables making the fries soggy. I prefer them hot and crispy. The steak and vegetables in a cast iron skillet on the stove.

 

 

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 bell pepper (orange or yellow, but lighter in color)
  • 1 medium onion
  • 1/2 pound loin beef
  • 2 tablespoons fresh chopped cilantro (1 for cooking, one for finish/garnish)
  • 1 small tomato, diced
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • Soy Sauce
  • 1/4 cup or 2-3 ounces Pisco Brandy
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • Salt & Pepper

METHOD

  1. Start the rice in a cooker. It will take about the same time to cook as the meat and vegetables.  You can use any type of french fries you like but I love frozen oven fries best because there is no fry oil, smell, taste and they are crisper and healthier.
  2. Slice the meat and vegetables such as the onion in pepper fairly thin, remember this is traditionally a stir fry dish.
  3. Season all the vegetables and meat well with salt and pepper.
  4. In a hot cast iron skillet, heat the oil until it is shimmering. Cook the beef until seared on all sides, this takes about 10 minutes. Remove and put aside.
  5. Deglaze the skillet with half the Pisco brandy, about 1.5 ounce or 45ml.
  6. Add in vegetables along with shredded garlic and cook with about an ounce of soy sauce. Traditionally, they say the vegetables should still have a good firmness/crunch to them, but I like mine a bit softer and caramelized.
  7. Add the beef back in, add in the rest of the Pisco brandy and just before it is done, add in fresh cilantro and chopped tomatoes. The tomatoes should be warm but not hot or cooked. Try to keep them fairly crisp/fresh.

If you want to get fancy and plate this right, use a small coffee or tea cup, scoop up some of the rice, press firmly and put this at the bottom of the plate in a mound.  Add the meat and vegetables, and top off with the french fries.  Put some extra cilantro on the side, along with soy sauce you typically see in Chinese restaurants.