La What Now?

Since the 1960s, baseball teams and players have been publishing cookbooks. I collect them and try out some of the recipes that major leaguers have shared with their fans over the years. Photos, recipes and comments included.

Friday, March 10, 2017

Venezuelan Carne Mechada (Flank Steak Stew) by Endy Chavez - from "GourMets" (2007)


1 1/2 pounds flank steak, cut into 2-3 large pieces
3 tbsp. canola oil
2 bay leaves
5 cups beef stock
4 tbsp. olive oil
2 onions, finely chopped
6 garlic cloves, minced
1 tbsp. dried oregano
1 tbsp. ground cumin
1 1/2 15-ounce cans petite diced tomatoes (do not drain)
cooked black beans
cooked white rice
salt and pepper

Season the steak with salt and pepper. Heat vegetable oil in large casserole pan or short stockpot over high heat. Add steak pieces and cook until browned on all sides. Add bay leaves and beef stock. Reduce heat and simmer slowly until steak is very tender, turning occasionally, about 2-2 1/2 hours. 

Remove beef from heat and allow meat to cool in the stock. Once cooled, remove the meat from the stock and shred it into thin strips. Reserve 1-1 1/2 cups of the cooking liquid.

Heat olive oil in large skillet over medium to high heat. Add onions and sauté until they are golden, about 10-15 minutes. Then add garlic, oregano and cumin and cook until onions become sweet-smelling, about another 7-9 minutes. Add diced tomatoes with their juice and continue to cook until most of the liquid evaporates.

Fold in the shredded flank steak and 1 cup of reserved cooking liquid. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Continue to simmer over low heat for 20-25 minutes. Arrange beef, rice and beans on a square or oval platter in three rows with rice in the center.

This is one of Endy's favorite Clubhouse recipes.

One wouldn't think of Endy Chavez as a journeyman player, but he played for seven different clubs from 2001 to 2014: Kansas City, Montréal/Washington, Philadelphia, New York Mets, Seattle, Texas and Baltimore.

I always identify Chavez with the Mets, even though he only spent three seasons with them. Most Mets fans will remember him well. Chavez became an instant New York legend in Game 7 of the 2006 NLCS, when he made a spectacular snow cone catch to keep the game tied 1-1 in the sixth inning. The Metsies would eventually fall to the Cards, but Chavez's catch was immortalized. 

                                                                        photo by RichieK

This dish is described as one of Chavez's clubhouse favourites and I can understand why. It takes some time to make pulled beef, but it's worth it. You might say the hardest part is the waiting.

The recipe above calls for the beef to be served with rice and beans, but I decided to pair it up with another recipe from "GourMets". I combined the beef with garlic mashed plantains and rolled them up as burritos. I wouldn't go around calling myself Iron Chef Latino, but I daresay this combo turned out great.

No comments:

Post a Comment