Picadillo ranchero translates to ranch style ground beef. Sounds simple, right? It’s those simple ingredients and simple flavors that transport us to abuela’s cocina. No lengthy steps, prep ahead or waiting for this easy and traditional Mexican recipe.
After Baby Food, After Sopita, There Was Picadillo!
Lol! Sounds funny, but most times that’s how it went in our family. Picadillo or ground beef dishes were my first introduction to eating meat as a toddler. I think that’s why many of us feel so much affection and nostalgia when it comes to picadillo, sopita and frijolitos (ground beef, fideo pasta and beans).
Picadillo Ranchero, Picadillo Caldoso y Picadillo en Caldo!
Ranch style ground beef, soupy ground beef and ground beef soup! It just kind of doesn’t sound as tasty if you try to translate it in English! Nowadays, Mexican food is so popular, that the general public recognizes many words in Spanish. No translation required! I cannot emphasize enough how simple the ingredients are, but so delicious in the end. Taste even better the next day. Imagine the possibilities on the variations you can prepare! Mix in your favorite vegetables!
Fideo, Beans and Picadillo Go Hand in Hand!
Whether you enjoy sopa de fideo with extra broth or sopa seca as pictured above, they are both delicious with beans and picadillo! Mom prepared beef picadillo often. My favorite picadillo con papa was my favorite, still is, and what she stuffed her chiles rellenos with! In case you didn’t know, when you see a word highlighted in blue, means there is a recipe link that you can click onto.
- 2 large poblano peppers
- 2 Anaheim peppers
- 2 large jalapeño peppers
- 1 1/2 lbs ground chuck
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp pepper
- 1 tsp granulated garlic
- 1 tsp cumin previously ground, or you can grind cumin seeds for more flavor
- 1 tsp Mexican oregano, crushed
- Avocado or olive oil, if needed
- 1 cup white onion, diced
- 4 cloves of garlic, minced
- 2 roma tomato, roughly chopped
- 1 serrano pepper, roughly chopped
- 6 cups water or broth(beef or chicken)
- 3 tsps chicken or beef bouillon powder
- 4 red potatoes, diced
- small handful of fresh cilantro or epazote I forgot to add it! Lol!
- Preheat broiler on high. Wash poblanos, Anaheim and jalapeños. Remove the stems. For easier clean up, remove the seeds from the large peppers. If you prefer less heat, you can remove seeds from jalapeños as well. Place on sheet pan about 6-8 inches under broiler for 15-20 minutes, turning over halfway through cooking time. Transfer to a plastic bag and let steam while you prep other ingredients.
- Transfer beef to a large pot and heat to medium. I didn't think it needed any oil at this time. Season with salt, pepper, garlic, cumin and oregano. Stir well to combine and cook for 10 minutes or until beef is just brown all around.
- To the blender, add the tomato, serrano pepper and 1 cup of water or broth. Blend on high until smooth. Set aside.
- Add the onions and garlic to the beef and saute for 3-4 minutes.
- Mix in the blended tomato sauce. Pour in 5 cups of water or broth of your choice. If using the bouillon powder, mix that in as it comes up to a simmer. Bring up to light boil and taste for salt and other spices. Adjust to your liking.
- While caldo comes up to a simmer, remove the roasted chiles from plastic bag. Remove the blistered skins and slice into short strips. Set aside.
- Once the caldo comes up to a steady boil and most of the light foam from tomatoes has evaporated, add in the diced potatoes and green chile. Cook just until potatoes are cooked through.
- Ladle into shallow bowls with fresh cooked whole beans and fideo. You can garnish with avocado and queso fresco. A little squeeze of fresh lime is tasty too! Warm tortillas are a must!