If you’re Cuban, Phillipino, or from another Latin American country, you probably recognize picadillo (pee-kah-DEE-yoh) as a traditional dish in the same way chili is a traditional American dish. That means everybody makes it a little differently according to their country of origin and the way their mama did it. It often has olives, but mine does not. On the other hand, my version includes raisins and almonds which are optional. Spices vary widely, same as chili.
I like to make a big batch of picadillo and freeze it in smaller portions to use in burritos or to pour over my salad-in-a-jar instead of salad dressing. Try making the baked shells seen above with instructions here, filling them with lettuce and then a few spoonfuls of picadillo, topped with tomatoes and avocados, if desired. Lately, I’ve taken to pouring picadillo over Recipe Girl’s coconut rice, or Cilantro-Hominy Rice, and serving it as a kid-friendly entree.
My stock of picadillo in the freezer has gone down quite a bit here lately because I’ve been a wee bit distracted from cooking very much. Perhaps you can understand.
- 1 pound ground beef
- 1 pound ground pork
- 1 cup chopped onions (I always used frozen onions)
- 1 cup chopped red bell peppers (can sub pimientos)
- 1-14 ounce can whole tomatoes
- 1 6-ounce can tomato paste
- ½ cup jarred, pickled, jalapenos, chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 cup raisins
- 1 cup slivered almonds (I like them toasted)
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon dried leaf oregano
- 1 teaspoon Sriracha sauce (optional but good if you walk on the spicy side)
- Salt and pepper
- ½ to 1 cup water
- Brown ground meat. Drain off fat.
- Add onions and red bell peppers. Continue to saute for a couple minutes.
- Pour tomatoes over meat mixture. Break up tomatoes with wooden spoon. (It's not a sin to use diced tomatoes if you prefer.)
- Stir in remaining ingredients. Cover and cook on low for 20-30 minutes.