It’s caldo season and I crave caldo de res at least once a week! I am a fan of the traditional caldo de res that mom prepared, but I do love adding my own twist now and then! Today’s version of caldo is a cross between the original and mole de olla. Any soup that includes dried red chiles in the broth, I am a fan of! And, instead of huge cuts of vegetables, I decided to chop them a little smaller so it’s easier to eat. You can fit more caldo in your bowl too!
What Mexican Soup Recipes Did You Grow Up With?
Besides caldo de res, there was menudo , pozole, caldo de pollo and caldo de albondigas.
Mom didn’t cook much with seafood, so I had to learn all those recipes on my own.
Changing it Up! Challenge Yourself!
You know me, I am always up to trying something new, even with traditional recipes. Typically for soup recipes, I cook the meat with some aromatics and spices. Once meat is cooked , I discard to cooked aromatics, such as the onion and garlic. In today’s recipe I did something a little different. I used some cheesecloth to tie a bundle with some dried chiles and bay leaves. It cooked along with the beef. I took everything out of the bundle, discarded the bay leaves and blended the rest of the ingredients with fresh tomato and some beef broth from cooking the meat. I really enjoyed the flavor it added to the soup base.
What’s The Best Cuts Of Beef For Caldo?
Traditionally in our house, mom would use beef shanks with the bone. She would add a few more bones for flavor. As I was browsing the meat department, I also spotted a package that had beef chuck neck bones. The had some bone, but pretty meaty too. I thought it would had good flavor in the end. Not disappointed in the end. Chuck roast with a good amount of marbling is a good option as well as beef short ribs.
Don’t Forget The Arroz Mexicano!
Growing up, mom referred to Mexican rice as sopa de arroz. It was never referred to as Spanish rice. I don’t really know what Spanish rice is, to be honest. I have heard some people say it includes beef, but not too sure. Mom did not always add peas and carrots. Sometimes she left it plain and sometimes she threw it a whole can of mixed vegetables. On occasion she would use a splash of tomato sauce, when there were no fresh tomatoes on hand. She adapted to get meals on the table for a family of ten in a timely manner.
More Caldo De Res!
- 1 8 quart pressure cooker
- 3 lbs. beef shank cross cut
- 1 1/2 lbs, beef chuck neck bones
- 8 liters water
- 2 tbsps salt
- 1 medium white onion (262 grams) peeled, sliced in half
- 1 head garlic(60 grams) peeled cloves
- 0.3 oz bay leaves
- 28 grams chile cascabel or chile California(4 chiles) stems and seeds removed
- 4 grams chile de arbol(4 chiles) stems and seeds removed
- 10 oz Roma tomato(3 tomato) quartered
- 14 oz corn on the cob chopped into niblet size
- 14 oz white or red potato sliced in half
- 12 oz carrots sliced
- 10 oz zucchini or Mexican squash sliced
- 14 oz cabbage(1/2 head cabbage) chopped
- 2 oz cilantro (1/3 cilantro bunch) washed
- 8 oz combination serrano and jalapeño peppers stems removed, roughly chopped
- 1 c water
- Salt, to taste
- Lime wedges
- Warm Corn Tortillas
- Cilantro finely chopped
For Salsa Cruda
- Add roughly chopped green chile peppers to the blender jar. Pour in 1 cup of water and salt to taste. Pulse on high until desired consistency. Variation, you could squeeze in some fresh lime juice and add less water. You could also add garlic if you like. Chef's choice! Set salsa aside until caldo is ready.
Prepare The Caldo(Soup)
- Transfer beef to pressure cooker pot. Cover with 3 liters of water and let sit for one hour. After one hour, rinse beef well under cold water. Cover with 4 liters of water. Soaking the beef will yield a cleaner, more clear soup base.
- In a couple of layers of cheesecloth, add the onion, garlic, chile cascabel, chile de arbol and bay leaves. Tie up the pouch using an extra piece cut from the cheesecloth. Place into pot with beef. Add 1 tbsp. of salt.
- Secure and lock the lid on the pressure cooker. Turn heat to high. When the pressure cooker begins to release rapid steam, this could take more than 25-30 minutes, reduce the heat to below medium. Set timer for 45 minutes.
- While the beef cooks, prepare the vegetables. Set aside.
- After 45 minutes. Turn heat off off the pressure cooker. Remove from the heat. Let sit until safety valve releases and it's safe to open. Once open, using a rubber spatula, remove any foam/scum that is stuck to the sides of the pot. Carefully remove the pouch with aromatics and transfer onto a plate. Place pot uncovered back onto burner at medium heat.
- Cut open the pouch. Discard the bay leaves, Transfer the onion, garlic and chiles to the blender jar with quartered tomatoes. Ladle in 2 cups of the broth from the pot into blender jar. Season to taste with salt and fresh cracked pepper. Secure the lid. Using a kitchen towel, hold the lid down while you blend on high until very smooth. Pour all the sauce into pot with beef.
- Once the beef comes up to a steady simmer, taste for salt. Add in the corn, carrots and potatoes. Let this come back up to a simmer for 15 minutes. I like adding my vegetables in layers, so they don't overcook and become mushy.
- After 15 minutes, add the zucchini, cabbage and cilantro. Bring back up to a simmer and cook for 15-20 minutes or until zucchini is fork tender.
- Ladle into large bowls. Garnish with salsa cruda, lime, cilantro and salt, if needed. Serve with warm corn tortillas. Store leftovers in an airtight storage container for 3-4 days.
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