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Silpancho is a popular dish in Bolivia made with common ingredients but packs a caloric punch. It's formed by layering its ingredients with a thin slice of beef the centerpiece.
2 pounds beef cut VERY thin (your butcher can do this for you) (should be about 6 large, thin slices)
6 large potatoes
2 cups bread crumbs
½ cup fresh onion (very finely chopped, you can even grate it if you prefer)
2 tomatoes chopped small (firm, Roma tomatoes work best)
1 fresh locoto (a small green pepper — you can substitute a serrano or other chili pepper), chopped tiny
1½ cups of cooked rice
1. Wash and peel the potatoes, and boil them whole until they are tender and edible, not NOT mushy. When they are done, cut each potato into thick slices and toast in a pan with a little oil until golden brown (like french fries).
2. Boil 3-4 cups of water, set aside.
3. Toast the rice in a hot pan, stirring constantly so it doesn’t burn. (You don’t want it to get black, you just want to toast any humidity out of it for about 3 minutes.)
4. Simmer the rice in 3 cups of the hot water, with a little salt, slowly, very low heat, until fully cooked.
5. While the rice is simmering, take each thin piece of beef, place on a cutting board sprinkle with salt and pepper, and pound with a meat mallet it until it is very tender (it will stretch out—you need it to be as thin as possible.)
6. Heat a pan with some oil, not too hot, you don’t want it to burn or smoke. Press the beef into the breadcrumbs and ensure each piece is completely covered with breadcrumbs, then place into the hot oil. Fry on both sides until the beef is cooked. Carefully turn it several times so the breadcrumbs don’t burn. When finished, set aside.
7. Fry the eggs.
8. On a plate, place a large amount of rice. On top of the rice place one silpancho (the beef). On top of the silpancho place one fried egg and “decorate” it with the chopped tomatoes, onions, and hot peppers. Place a few of the fried potatoes on the side, serve and ENJOY!
For more about Bolivia and Bolivian food and recipes, see my website http://www.boliviabella.com/recipes.html
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