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Lomo Saltado (Peruvian "Beef" Stir-fry)

What you need: 

1 cup corn oil (for frying--most of this won't be consumed!)
1 pound potatoes, peeled and cut into French-fry-sized pieces
12-14 ounces steak substitute-- Morningstar beef-like strips, seitan, or large textured
soy protein chunks rehydrated in broth
1 large onion, cut into strips like the French fries (red is nice)
1 large ripe tomato, sliced into rounds, then halved into half-moons
3/4 to 1 teaspoon salt (Peruvian food is usually very salty, so use your own taste to
guide)
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1-2 moderately hot peppers, cut into fine rounds or slivers
1 tablespoon soy sauce or tamari
1 teaspoon minced ginger, optional (less typical)
2 tablespoons minced cilantro, optional (fancy!)
1 clove garlic, minced, optional (not an atypical inclusion)
mounds of fluffy white rice, for serving (or sub in brown rice)

What you do: 

Heat corn oil in a wok or skillet over moderate heat. When good and hot, add potatoes and French fry them until crisp and brown. Drain on paper towels and set aside. (I have subbed in oven fries made with far less oil, as I hate to deep-fry-- and baked frozen fries, although they are not nearly as good.)
Carefully pour off all but 1 tablespoon of the oil. Stir-fry unbeef, vegetables, and seasonings (except tamari!) until onions are tender-crisp, the unbeef is sizzling, and the whole stir-fry is expressing a little pot liquor. The ginger and/or garlic would go in with the whole if you wish to include them, but they're really not standard.
Add tamari (or you may omit it, but I think it never tastes right without it). Fold in French fries and heat for a couple minutes, till they are incorporated. Sprinkle on the minced cilantro if desired.
Serve alongside mountains of rice for a tasty, unusual meal. Peruvians like to mold their rice in a custard cup, mini-bundt, or special serving mold and then turn it out so that it makes a flat-topped cylinder on the plate. Serving sizes for Peruvian dinners tend to be generous! Yes, the mixed starches are traditional. :)
This (made with beef, of course) is one of Peru's beloved national dishes. It's Chinese-Peruvian in origin, well-seasoned without being particularly spicy, and very tasty.

Preparation Time: 
Cooking Time: 
Servings: 
4-6
Recipe Category: 

SO HOW'D IT GO?

I made this for the first time tonight. Overall, we enjoyed it. My potatoes also turned out quite soft and greasy; however, I've never fried potatoes before, so that's likely due to my inexperience. I made it with Gardein, and while I love many of their products, I learned that I don't like the beef. We've been discussing veggies to add to the mix instead of faux meat. My husband suggested okra, which I think would be really good. I used one small red pepper and it was surprisingly mild, so next time I'll use two or leave the seeds in.

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This is one of my top 5 favorite dishes I've had. The faux beef (we used Gardein) goes so well with the other ingredients. Ad it's great as leftovers. I highly recommend it! (to veg and meat eaters alike).

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This recipe was truly tasty. The only problem I had was with frying the potatoes: they turned out a bit greasy, but I think this was because I didn't have the oil hot enough. If anyone has any tips on that I would be much obliged.  :)

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Wow, this is delicious!  I didnt think it would be as good as it turned out after reading the recipe but i was very mistaken! I'm still eating it :D 
The peppers and potatoes really make this dish, i made it extra spicy  ;D

Thanks!

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The meal turned out beautifully. It's going to be a regular dish at my house. Thanks for this interesting recipe.

I'm not big on tomatoes, so I used a quarter cup of Trader Joe's Salsa Autentica. TJ's rocks for this recipe, because they sell frozen cubes of minced garlic, frozen cubes of chopped cilantro (I mixed it in rather than sprinkling it on top), fresh jalapeños, fresh ginger (highly recommended), and a very tasty, spicy salsa, all for cheap. My local one doesn't sell Meal Starters, though.

I ended up sort of stewing this instead of stir-frying because of the fat. So I used a little spray oil to brown the onions, then poured in a cup of water and all the veggies and spices. Cooked that, covered. Meal Starters cook very quickly, so I waited about five minutes before putting them in. Cooked for a few minutes uncovered to boil off the water, then tossed in the oven-fried potatoes, coating them with the sauce. Served with brown rice. Probably not an authentic texture, but the taste was great.

For next time, I'm thinking about adding some more veggies, corn for sure (had some roasted corn on the side tonight, and it integrated very well), and maybe red or black beans too. Suggestions welcome.

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I made this tonight for dinner.  All I have to say is YUM!  No complaints here.  This is going to become a regular meal for me.  Very tasty.  Thank you.  I'm going to try the Peruvian potato salad next. 

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