Vintage, a fashionable meat

Throughout November, Panama celebrates the most emblematic dates related to its sovereignty. To mark the occasion, I will be re-posting some of my favorite Panamanian recipes. Many of them prepared especially for these days in previous years. Today we have a Ropa Vieja recipe, one of Panama’s favorite, just in case some of you missed it last time. I called it Vintage because ropa vieja translate to Old clothes, and let’s be honest, what is vintage if not that! 😉



  • 1 kg of beef (preferably skirt)
  • 1 onion chopped into strips
  • 1 cup tomato sauce
  • ¼ teaspoon of cumin
  • ¼ teaspoon paprika
  • 2 or 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 red pepper chopped
  • 1 green pepper, chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3 tomatoes, chopped
  • 6 sprigs of cilantro
  • ½ teaspoon soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • A pinch of cayenne pepper, optional

Cook the meat in boiling water with salt, some sprigs of cilantro, pepper and a clove of garlic for an hour and a half, remove from heat and let cool. Reserve a cup of cooking water.

Tear apart the meat with your hands and reserve.

Heat oil in a pan, sauté onions, peppers and garlic. When that is a bit poached, add the tomatoes and continue sautéing for a couple of minutes.

Now add the meat, tomato sauce, chopped cilantro (reserve some for garnish) and the cooking water. Seasoned with cumin, black pepper, Worcestershire and soy sauce, paprika and salt, if needed.

Allow the sauce to reduce over medium heat for about 20 minutes.

This meat can be served with white rice o fries.



16 thoughts on “Vintage, a fashionable meat

  1. WOW – This really does look excellent and I’m quite eager to try even more since I think I can ALMOST taste it on my tongue already. 🙂

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