How to make lomo saltado with beef, mushrooms or tofu

Lomo Saltado

Total time:30 mins

Servings:2 to 4

Total time:30 mins

Servings:2 to 4

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Peruvian cuisine is a beautiful blend of indigenous, Spanish, Chinese and Japanese ingredients and techniques, and I love how this is exemplified in the dish we have for dinner tonight: lomo saltado.

This recipe, from the Embassy of Peru, is true to the style and substance of the dish. It is a classic example of Peruvian Chifa cuisine, a blend of Chinese technique and ingredients from Spain, as well as those originating from the Peruvian mountains.

The classic lomo saltado is a literal translation of its Spanish name: a beef stir-fry. Beef, which came from Spain in the 1600s, sears well in a hot wok. But the other ingredients too; it is the saltado part that is the most important.

As Ricardo Zarate writes in his “The Fire of Peru”, the lomo saltado can sometimes get a bad reputation. “There are a lot of bad versions. It’s hard not to be disappointed when a saltado has steamed instead of pan-fried ingredients. It’s a stew, not a stir-fry. The key is to fry everything over very high heat so you get a good sear on the ingredients, but you’re not cooking them all fresh.

True sautéing is indeed essential to the success of a saltado, but if you don’t have a wok, you can easily make this recipe in a heavy-bottomed pan. To ensure you get a good sear on the food, be sure to turn up the heat until the pan begins to smoke before adding food. Then don’t overcrowd the pan – fry everything in batches if necessary.

Zarate recounts a memory of watching a lomo saltado competition on television. The fastest contestant finished cooking the dish in just 90 seconds. Zarate advises that “you should never go more than two minutes between the time your beef hits the pan and the time…your toppings are ready to scatter over the finished dishes.”

Keep this in mind if you plan on making lomo saltado or a vegetarian variation. This recipe works great with mushrooms or firm tofu in place of meat.

  • To make this vegetarian >> use sliced ​​portobello mushrooms instead of the beef, and be sure to sauté them over high heat so they transpire and then caramelize.
  • Fries are a traditional addition >> but you can skip them.

NOTE: Aji amarillo peppers can be found fresh or frozen in Latin American markets. Substitute another mild pepper, such as Fresno, a banana pepper, or, for a mild alternative, a small yellow or red bell pepper.

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  • 1 pound beef tenderloin or skirt steak, cut into 2 x 1/2-inch strips
  • 1/4 teaspoon fine salt
  • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 large red onion (10 ounces), cut into 12 thin wedges
  • 2 aji amarillo peppers, seeded and cut into thin strips (see NOTE)
  • 2 medium tomatoes (10 ounces total), cut into eighths
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley, divided
  • 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons soy or tamari sauce, preferably low sodium
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons pisco (optional)
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice (from 1 lime)
  • 8 ounces cooked friesTo serve
  • 2 cups cooked white rice, for serving

Season the beef with the salt. In a wok or large skillet over high heat, add the oil and heat until it begins to smoke. Add beef and sear until deeply caramelized, about 1 minute per side. Reduce heat to medium-high. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the beef to a plate and cover loosely.

Add the onion wedges to the same skillet and cook, stirring, until they begin to soften and the edges darken, 3 to 4 minutes. Add the peppers, tomatoes, 1 tablespoon of parsley, vinegar, soy or tamari sauce and a few peppercorns. Cook, stirring, until tomatoes and peppers have softened, about 2 minutes.

Return the beef and any accumulated juices to the wok or skillet and stir gently to combine. Reduce the heat to a minimum. If using pisco, add it, then use a long-handled lighter to ignite the sauce. Allow to burn briefly to allow the alcohol to evaporate. Remove from heat and sprinkle with remaining parsley and lime juice.

Toss with the fries and serve family style, with rice on the side.

Per serving (with beef tenderloin; 1 cup), based on 4

Calories: 504; Total fat: 27g; Saturated fat: 5g; Cholesterol: 74mg; Sodium: 740mg; Carbohydrates: 34g; Dietary fiber: 4g; Sugars: 7 g; Protein: 30g.

This analysis is an estimate based on the available ingredients and this preparation. It should not replace the advice of a dietitian or nutritionist.

Adapted from a recipe provided by the Embassy of Peru.

Tested by Yuki Noguchi and G. Daniela Galarza; questions by e-mail to [email protected].

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Check out this week’s Eat Voraciously recipes:

Monday: Roasted Chili Lime Tofu Bowls

Tuesday: Carrot and miso soup

Wednesday: Shrimp Stew

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