This recipe is sponsored by Mushroom Council. I love picadillo because it’s full of bright contrasting flavors: sweet raisins, salty-briny olives. Swapping in mushrooms for some of the beef lightens the dish without compromising the taste!
Finely chop all the mushrooms into pea-size pieces. Heat 2 tablespoons vegetable oil in a Dutch oven or other wide pot over medium-high heat. Add the mushrooms and cook, stirring, until dry and browned, 12 to 15 minutes. (There may be a lot of liquid at first.) Push to one side of the pot.
Add the beef to the other side of the pot; season with salt and pepper. Break up the meat with a wooden spoon, then stir into the mushrooms. Cook until the beef is no longer pink, 2 to 3 minutes.
Push the beef-mushroom mixture to one side of the pot and add the remaining 1 tablespoon vegetable oil to the other side. Add the onion, season with salt and pepper and cook, stirring, until it begins to soften, about 2 minutes. Stir into the beef-mushroom mixture and cook all together until the onions are softened, 3 to 4 minutes. Add the garlic, 2 teaspoons cumin, the oregano and cinnamon and stir to combine. Add the tomato paste and cook, stirring, until lightly toasted and everything is evenly coated, 2 to 3 minutes.
Add the diced tomatoes and 1 1/2 cups water. Reduce the heat and simmer, stirring occasionally, until the sauce has reduced to a thick stew, 25 to 30 minutes, adding the olives and raisins in the last 5 minutes of cooking. Meanwhile, cook the rice as the label directs.
Stir the vinegar and the remaining 1/4 teaspoon cumin into the picadillo and season with salt and pepper. Remove from the heat. Serve over the rice and top with parsley and/or cilantro.
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Photograph by Mike Garten
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