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RITZ Ropa Vieja Bites

RITZ Ropa Vieja Bites

Prep time40 min
Total time3hr 40min
ServingsMakes 4 servings, 3 topped crackers each.
  • ¼ cup oil, divided
  • 1 beef flank steak (2 lb.)
  • 2 white onions, cut lengthwise into thin slices, then crosswise into 1-inch-long strips
  • 2 EACH green and red peppers, cut lengthwise into thin slices, then crosswise into 1-inch-long strips
  • 5 large garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 Tbsp. paprika
  • 2 tsp. dried oregano leaves
  • 1½ tsp. ground cumin
  • ½ tsp. EACH salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • ¼ tsp. ground red pepper (cayenne)
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 cups tomato puree
  • ½ cup beef broth
  • 12 RITZ Crackers
  • ⅓ cup cooked long-grain white rice
  • 2 Tbsp. rinsed canned black beans
  • 12 fresh cilantro leaves
  • Heat oven to 250°F. Place oven rack in lower third of oven.
  • Heat 2 Tbsp. oil in ovenproof heavy Dutch oven or large cast-iron saucepan on medium-high heat.  Add steak; cook 5 min. on each side or until evenly browned on both sides.  Remove steak from pan; cover to keep warm.
  • Add onions and peppers to Dutch oven along with the remaining oil; cook 10 to 12 min. or until vegetables are crisp-tender, stirring occasionally.  Spoon half of the cooked vegetables into bowl; cool, then refrigerate for later use in recipe.  Add garlic to vegetables remaining in pan; cook and stir 3 min. Stir in dry seasonings; cook 1 min., stirring constantly.  Add tomato puree and beef broth; stir.  Bring to boil. 
  • Return steak to pan; spoon vegetables over steak to completely cover steak.  Add bay leaf; cover. Place pan in oven.
  • Bake 2-1/2 to 3 hours or until steak is very tender.  Remove pan from oven.  Let steak and vegetables stand 15 min.  Use tongs to transfer steak to cutting board, leaving vegetables and sauce in pan. Let stand at room temperature until ready to use.
  • Cut steak lengthwise in half, then use 2 forks to pull steak into shreds.  Cut shreds into 1-inch lengths. 
  • Remove and discard bay leaf from ingredients in pan.  Use spoon to skim and discard fat from surface of sauce.  Return meat to sauce in pan.  Add reserved cooked vegetables; stir. 
  • Spoon 1/2 cup meat mixture into saucepan; cook over medium heat until heated through, stirring occasionally.  Cool remaining meat mixture, then refrigerate until ready to use as desired. 
  • Cook rice and beans in separate pans until heated through.
  • Top crackers with rice, meat mixture, beans and cilantro just before serving.  
Nutrition Notes

This traditional dish becomes a flavorful topping for crisp crackers in these tasty appetizers that can help you eat right.

Recipe Tips
  • Variation
    Substitute a boneless beef chuck roast for the flank steak and/or substitute chopped avocados for the beans.  
  • How to Store and Use the Unused Cooked Meat Mixture
    The remaining meat mixture can be refrigerated up to 4 days.  Reheat when ready to use. Serve over hot cooked rice along with black beans and maduros (fried sweet plantains).
  • Use Your Slow Cooker
    After browning the steak and vegetables, you can instead spoon them into a slow cooker sprayed with cooking spray; cover.  Cook on LOW 7 to 8 hours (or on HIGH 3 to 4 hours).  Or, you can cook the steak and vegetables in a pressure cooker for 30 min.


Nutrition Information

Nutrition Per Serving

 % Daily Value*
Total fat 6g 
   Saturated fat 1.5g 
   Trans fat 0g 
Cholesterol 15mg 
Sodium 140mg 
Carbohydrate 13g 
   Dietary fiber 1g 
   Total sugars 2g 
   Added sugars <1g 
Protein 6g 
Vitamin A2 %DV
Vitamin C10 %DV
Vitamin D0 %DV
Calcium2 %DV
Iron10 %DV
Potassium4 %DV

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