We had to get sloppy, make a mess…and spice things up a little!
Picadillo is one of the great dishes of the Cuban diaspora: a soft, fragrant stew of ground beef and tomatoes, with raisins added for sweetness and olives for salt. Versions of it exist across the Caribbean and into Latin America.
According to legend, a cook named Joe at Floyd Angell’s café in Sioux City, Iowa, added tomato sauce to his “loose meat” sandwiches and the “sloppy joe” sandwich was born. And the rest, as they say, is history!
Cuban Picadillo Sloppy Joes
1 lb. ground sirloin 1 large yellow onion, peeled and chopped 1 green bell pepper, seeded and chopped 4 cloves garlic, minced 2 bay leaves 14 oz. black beans, drained 1/2 cup white wine 1 cup tomato sauce 2/3 cup green olives, chopped 1/2 cup raisins 1 Tbs. olive brine 1 Tbs. capers 2 tsp. ground cumin 1 tsp. cayenne pepper sea salt and pepper to taste
Add the ground meat to a large skillet over medium heat. Cook and stir until the sirloin is crumbly, evenly browned, and no longer pink.Add the onions, bell pepper, garlic, and bay leaves. Cook and stir until the onion has softened and turned translucent, about 5 minutes. Stir in the cooked meat, wine, tomato sauce, olives, raisins, black beans, olive brine, capers, cayenne, and cumin, and salt and pepper. Simmer about 15 minutes.