Thursday, February 16, 2012

Bistec a lo Super Pobre

In Chile where I grew up, there is a super fancy dish called "Bistec a lo Pobre". This is a steak, preferably a filet that has been grilled to perfection, and served with carmelized onions, french fries, and a fried egg. I know, foreigners eat such strange combinations of foods. But let me tell ya', although strange it is delish!
What is so funny about this dish is that the name literally means "poor man's steak" or "steak the poor man's way". As you can imagine, there is nothing poor about this meal. If you go to a restaurant it will probably be the most expensive dish on the menu. A real treat.

I am unbelievably strange about some of the things I like to eat; probably due to the fact that I grew up eating strange things. One of those strange things, that by the way I never had growing up, is just in a strange category of it's own: cold sweet potatoes. I love cold sweet potatoes. Yesterday I was really craving a cold sweet potato. Whenever I fix them I always throw an extra one in the oven to save for the next day. I don't wrap them up, I just wash, throw on a baking stone and bake for a very long time. I believe that is the secret to a great sweet potato. You need to overcook them, and just like onions, they get sweeter and sweeter the longer you cook them. I check and make sure I don't take them out of the oven till they are super soft and oozing at the ends.

So I went to the store and bought me some long skinny sweet potatoes and baked them. I had to create my dinner around them. I'm calling my dish the "very poor man's steak" because I just made it with a hamburger meat patty.



Here is what you do.

Bake sweet potatoes for a minimum of one hour. I baked mine for an hour and a half, and they were skinny ones! If you want them sweet, wait till they ooze. When they begin to cool off the "meat" will have shrunk  considerably and the skin will be real wrinkled. 
If you want an authentic chilean dish, skip the sweet potatoes and fix home made french fries.

Brown your hamburger patty. If you want to splurge, or be authentic still, by all means, have a real steak.

For the onions, cook for at least 20 minutes, it may take longer. Like spinach, you begin with a pan full and end up with a hand full. For Mike and me I cut up one of those ginormous onions. If they would have been a smaller, more medium size, I would have fixed two. No need to add anything other than salt. If they are cooked long enough they will be sweet.

Don't forget the egg! It just adds that special final touch. So good, trust me.


Rule #1
You must be patient, the onions take a long time to cook. Overcook them as much as you can without burning them.

Rule #2
Make the extra baked sweet potato. Put it in your fridge and have it for lunch the next day.  Because it will have such a sweet buttery flavor there will be no need to add anything to it. Eat it like an apple, skin and all (the sweetest part is stuck to the skin). If you don't like it, warm it up!


Translation: Bon appatit, enjoy!!

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