The Dominican Republic’s national lunch food, La Bandera Dominicana, includes the soft beef dish Res Guisada (Dominican Braised Beef).
The preparation time for this recipe is only ten minutes, and the total cooking time is one hour.
Hence, if you want to create a hearty yet comforting dish for lunch, try this recipe.
Below, we have super simple steps for you to follow to help you recreate this flavorsome dish, which highlights how delicious beef can be.
What Is Res Guisada?
Res Guisada is a traditional Latin American dish often hailed from Dominican and Puerto Rican cuisines. It features beef, typically stewed until tender, in a rich sauce made from tomatoes, bell peppers, onions, garlic, and spices.
This hearty stew is cherished for its deep flavors and comforting essence, usually served alongside rice, beans, or tortillas. It’s not just a meal but a celebration of culture and generations of culinary tradition.
History Of Res Guisada
Res Guisada traces its roots to Latin America, with variations found in Dominican and Puerto Rican kitchens. Originating from the need to tenderize tougher cuts of meat, indigenous communities, and Spanish colonizers combined culinary techniques, giving birth to this savory stew.
Over centuries, it evolved, integrating regional spices and ingredients. Today’s Res Guisada reflects a rich tapestry of cultures, a testament to generations of adaptation and a shared love for hearty, flavorful meals.
Interesting Facts About The Res Guisada
- Regional Variations: From the Dominican Republic to Puerto Rico, every region boasts its unique twist on Res Guisada.
- Versatile Serving: While traditionally paired with rice, modern renditions serve it with plantains, tortillas, or even pasta.
- Tough to Tender: The dish evolved as a method to tenderize less desirable cuts of beef, turning them into delectable morsels.
- Spices Galore: A myriad of spices, from cumin to achiote, can be found in various versions, each imparting a distinct depth.
- Cultural Fusion: Res Guisada embodies the culinary fusion of indigenous Latin American practices with Spanish influences.
- Slow-Cooked Magic: The dish’s magic lies in its slow-cooked process, melding flavors over hours to perfection.
- Ceremonial Significance: In many households, preparing Res Guisada is a ceremonial event, uniting families in both cooking and feasting.
What Makes The Res Guisada Special?
- Depth of Flavor: Slow-cooking melds ingredients, creating a harmonious, deep flavor profile.
- Cultural Heritage: A dish steeped in history, it captures the essence of Latin American culinary traditions.
- Transformation: Res Guisada turns tougher beef cuts into melt-in-your-mouth morsels, showcasing the magic of patient cooking.
- Ingredient Symphony: The stew harmoniously blends beef, vegetables, and spices, resulting in a complex yet balanced dish.
- Versatility: Its adaptability to regional and personal touches allows endless, delightful variations.
- Comfort Food: Its hearty and rich nature classifies it as the ultimate comfort food, evoking memories and warmth.
- Shared Experience: Often cooked in large quantities, Res Guisada promotes communal dining, reinforcing bonds over shared meals.
|Beef (skirt or round)||2 pounds, sliced into small chunks|
|Tomato Sauce||1 cup|
|Bell Peppers||2, chopped|
|Red Onion||1, chopped|
|Vegetable Oil||2 tablespoons|
|Parsley||1 sprig, chopped|
|Lime||Juice from 1 lime|
|Garlic||3 cloves, mashed|
|Oregano (ground or dried)||1 teaspoon|
|Salt||1 and ½ teaspoons|
Importance Of Cut Of Beef
In the Dominican Republic, you must go to the grocery store or butcher and request “res para guisar.” However, this can be more difficult when you aren’t in the Dominican Republic.
You should be aware that this stewed beef is a simple recipe for inexpensive cuts (Also check out How To Make Bo Kho- The Traditional Vietnamese Beef Stew). They are slowly cooked at low temperatures. As a result, the meat becomes extremely soft.
While the sauce becomes rich and dark as the meat juices caramelize. Hence, you don’t need any pricey cuts of beef here, the cheap cuts are perfect.
- Beef Choice: Opt for grass-fed beef; it lends a richer flavor and is often more tender.
- Tomato Sauce: Freshly made tomato sauce can elevate the dish, but store-bought works in a pinch.
- Bell Peppers: Using a mix of green, red, and yellow peppers enhances the dish’s visual appeal and flavor depth.
- Red Onion: Ensure it’s finely chopped to help it meld seamlessly into the stew.
- Vegetable Oil: Consider olive oil for a richer, Mediterranean hint.
- Parsley: Fresh is best; dried parsley might alter the desired flavor.
- Lime Juice: Freshly squeezed lime juice offers a vibrant zing compared to bottled versions.
Can You Vary The Recipe With Other Ingredients?
- Keto: Swap traditional tomatoes for low-carb options like cherry tomatoes and increase the fat content by incorporating more oil or using fatty cuts of beef.
- Paleo: Replace vegetable oil with coconut or avocado oil. Ensure all other ingredients, especially tomato sauce, are free from additives and sugars.
- Gluten-Free: Res Guisada is gluten-free; just be cautious about cross-contamination and any additives in store-bought tomato sauce.
- Whole30: Use compliant tomato sauce without sugars or additives, and skip any non-compliant ingredients.
- Vegetarian/Vegan: Replace beef with hearty vegetables like mushrooms, zucchini, or eggplant. For protein, tofu or tempeh works wonders. Vegan-friendly oils can replace animal fats.
- Season Beef: Combine beef with salt, pepper, oregano, and lime juice. Refrigerate for 20 minutes.
- Cook Beef: Heat oil, brown beef, add water, reduce heat, and simmer until tender.
- Add Vegetables: Mix in onion, peppers, tomatoes, and garlic. Cook until soft.
- Sauce Formation: Blend in tomato sauce and water; let reduce.
- Final Touch: Add parsley and seasoning. Serve hot.
Variations, Add-Ons, And Toppings
- Poultry Version: Replace beef with chicken thighs for a lighter variant.
- Seafood Twist: Use fish or shrimp for a coastal take.
- Root Vegetables: Toss in diced potatoes or yucca for added texture.
- Legumes: Incorporate beans or chickpeas for protein variety.
- Spice Kick: Adding chili powder or chopped jalapeños can add heat.
- Wine: A splash of red wine deepens flavor during sauce reduction.
- Cheese: A sprinkle of queso fresco or cotija elevates the dish.
- Herbs: Fresh cilantro or chives offer color and zest.
- Crunch: Tortilla strips or toasted bread crumbs can add a crunchy contrast.
- Citrus Zing: Lime wedges on the side allow for adjustable tanginess.
Scaling The Recipe
- Determine Factor: Decide the multiplication (for increasing) or division (for decreasing) factor. If you want to double the recipe, the factor is 2; if you want to halve, the factor is 0.5.
- Adjust Ingredients: Multiply or divide each ingredient by the scaling factor. For instance, doubling requires 4 pounds of beef instead of 2.
- Cookware Size: Ensure you have a pot or pan suitable for the increased or decreased volume.
- Cooking Time: While ingredient amounts change, cooking times might not scale linearly. Monitor closely for doneness.
- Spices and Seasoning: Adjust to taste, as directly scaling might not give the desired flavor intensity.
- Test and Tweak: Especially when scaling up for the first time, taste and adjust as needed.
What Is Used For Garnishing?
- Fresh Herbs: Cilantro, parsley, or chives can add color and a burst of freshness.
- Citrus: Lime or lemon wedges or zests provide a zingy contrast.
- Cheese: Crumbled queso fresco or cotija gives a creamy texture and salty bite.
- Chilies: Sliced jalapeños or red chili flakes can introduce heat.
- Vegetable Crunch: Thinly sliced radishes or red onions offer a crunchy texture and vibrant color.
- Creamy Element: A dollop of sour cream or avocado slices can balance the heat and provide a creamy texture.
Can I Make Res Guisada In A Slow Cooker Or Instant Pot?
The Slow Cooker and Instant Pot are excellent tools for making Res Guisada.
- Its low-and-slow method is ideal.
- After browning the beef in a separate pan, transfer it to the slow cooker, add other ingredients, and let it simmer for 6-8 hours on low.
- The extended cooking time ensures a richly flavored, melt-in-the-mouth stew.
- This pressure cooker significantly speeds up the process.
- Use the “Sauté” function to brown the beef and sauté vegetables.
- Add other ingredients, seal, and set to “Meat/Stew” or “Pressure Cook” mode.
- Cook for 35-45 minutes, followed by a natural release. It offers a quicker yet flavorful result.
Can I Use Store Bought Broth, Or Should I Make My Own?
Both store-bought broth and homemade broth can be used in Res Guisada, depending on your preference, convenience, and the desired outcome:
- Convenience: It’s a quick solution if you need more time.
- Consistency: Brands offer a uniform taste, so results are predictable.
- Considerations: Opt for low-sodium varieties to control salt content. Ensure there are no additives or preservatives for a cleaner flavor.
- Flavor Depth: Homemade allows you to develop a richer, deeper flavor tailored to your liking.
- Control: You decide what goes in, ensuring no additives or excessive salt.
- Effort: It requires more time and preparation.
Can I Use Different Types Of Meat/Fish/Pasta/Vegetables For The Stew?
The beauty of stews like Res Guisada is their adaptability to various ingredients:
- Meat: Apart from beef, chicken, pork, lamb, or even game meats can be integrated for varied flavors and textures.
- Fish: Firm fish like cod, halibut, or salmon can be added towards the end of cooking to prevent overcooking.
- Pasta: Small pasta shapes like macaroni, orzo, or shells can transform the stew into a hearty one-pot meal.
- Vegetables: Broaden the nutrient profile with additions like carrots, peas, potatoes, zucchini, or even leafy greens.
Success Tips – Tips And Tricks For Making The Soup
You can follow a few tips to make this dish the best.
Browning The Meat
- Browning the meat is a vital step, giving it its appealing color. Yet, this step also adds a lot of flavor. Any marks left from browning are used to create another depth of flavor to the sauce.
- However, when it comes to browning the meat, you may give the meat time to rest after browning. This can improve the flavor and tenderize the meat even more. You can allow the meat to rest for up to 12 hours or overnight.
Quickening The Process
- Since this recipe takes a while to complete, there is a way to quicken the whole process. If you are short on time but still wish to follow this recipe, you may make res guisada in a pressure cooker instead.
- As a result, once you have browned them, add the beef with 1 ½ cups of water to your pressure cooker and cook for only 20 m minutes.
- After this time, you can uncover and see how tender the meat is. Once tender, the meat can be returned to the pot, and the rest of the recipe can be followed as usual.
Res Guisada offers more than taste; it’s a nutritional powerhouse. Each serving provides essential nutrients to fuel your day. It is packed with protein from beef and vitamins from fresh veggies.
What Are The Total Calories In The Stew?
Calculating the exact calorie content of a dish like Res Guisada requires detailed nutritional information for each ingredient and its specific quantities.
However, a general estimation can be provided based on typical values.
An average serving of Res Guisada might range between 350 to 500 calories, depending on portion size and specific ingredients.
Using a dedicated nutrition calculator or app with the exact ingredient amounts is recommended for precise values.
Dietary Restrictions Of The Res Guisada
- Meat Content: It’s not suitable for vegetarians or vegans due to the beef.
- Gluten: While inherently gluten-free, cross-contamination can occur if ingredients are processed in facilities that handle gluten-containing products. Always check labels if gluten sensitivity is a concern.
- Nightshades: Ingredients like tomatoes, bell peppers, and some seasonings belong to the nightshade family, which some individuals avoid due to inflammatory concerns or allergies.
- Low-carb/Keto: The tomato sauce and some vegetables might have higher carb contents. Adjustments are needed for stricter low-carb or keto diets.
- Allergies: Always cross-check ingredients for potential allergens, especially if using store-bought broths or seasonings that might contain additives or preservatives.
Health Benefits Of The Res Guisada
- Protein-Rich: Beef provides essential amino acids that support muscle growth, repair, and overall body function.
- Vitamin and Minerals: Vegetables like bell peppers and tomatoes contain vitamins C, A, and essential minerals.
- Iron Source: Beef is a good source of heme iron, which is readily absorbed by the body, aiding in preventing anemia.
- Antioxidants: Onions, garlic, and tomatoes contain antioxidants that combat oxidative stress.
- Immunity Boost: Ingredients like garlic have immune-boosting properties.
- Digestive Health: Tomatoes offer dietary fiber, promoting gut health.
How Can I Make Res Guisada Lower In Sodium?
- Natural Ingredients: Opt for fresh tomatoes instead of canned tomato sauce, as processed options often have added salt.
- Skip Added Salt: When seasoning, use a reduced amount of salt or omit it entirely, relying on the ingredients’ natural flavors.
- Herbs & Spices: Enhance flavor with sodium-free herbs and spices such as oregano, cumin, paprika, or fresh cilantro.
- Low-Sodium Broth: If you’re using broth, select a low-sodium version.
- Rinse Canned Goods: If incorporating canned vegetables, rinse them to wash away some sodium.
- Taste Before Serving: Always taste before serving to ensure the seasoning is balanced without over-salting.
How Can I Make Res Guisada Lower In Sugar?
- Fresh Tomatoes: Use fresh tomatoes instead of canned tomato sauce, which can contain added sugars.
- Check Ingredients: If using store-bought broth or seasonings, read labels to avoid those with added sugars or sweeteners.
- Natural Flavor Enhancers: Boost flavors with herbs and spices, such as oregano, cumin, or bay leaves, which add depth without sugar.
- Limit Sweet Veggies: Some vegetables, like bell peppers, have natural sugars. Choose green bell peppers over red or yellow for slightly lower sugar content.
- Mind Add-ons: If adding toppings or side dishes, ensure they don’t introduce unnecessary sugars.
How To Serve The Res Guisada At Its Best?
- Warm Plates: Serve on pre-warmed plates to keep the stew hot for longer.
- Accompaniments: Offer traditional sides like rice or warm tortillas. They not only complement the flavors but also absorb the rich sauce.
- Garnish: Sprinkle chopped cilantro or parsley on top for a burst of color and added freshness.
- Citrus Zing: A slice of lime on the side lets diners add a squeeze for a bright citrus kick.
- Texture Contrast: Serve with sliced avocado or crumbled queso fresco for a creamy contrast.
- Pairing: Complement the hearty stew with a light, crisp salad or roasted vegetables.
Perfect Side Dishes To Complement Res Guisada
Red Guisada is a vibrant and hearty meal. Hence, it should be served alongside simple side dishes. This can include simple white rice and beans to create an authentic Dominican meal.
However, you could also serve this dish with mashed potatoes or a side salad. What you serve alongside this dish is really up to you.
However, you want it to be simple so that the sole focus is on the flavors from the res guisada and nothing else.
How Long Can We Store The Stew?
Storing Res Guisada properly ensures you can enjoy its flavors for days after cooking. The stew can be safely stored in an airtight container for up to 3-4 days in the refrigerator. If you wish to keep it longer, consider freezing it.
In the freezer, when stored in airtight containers or heavy-duty freezer bags with excess air removed, Res Guisada can last up to 2-3 months. Always allow the stew to cool to room temperature before refrigerating or freezing.
Can I Make The Stew In Advance?
Stews, including Res Guisada, often taste even better when made in advance. This allows flavors to meld and intensify over time. Prepare the stew a day or two before you intend to serve it.
After cooking, let it cool to room temperature and then store it in the refrigerator in an airtight container.
When you’re ready to serve, reheat it slowly on the stove, ensuring it reaches a safe internal temperature. Making stew in advance not only enhances the flavor but also offers convenience.
What Can We Do With Leftovers?
- Tacos or Burritos: Fill tortillas with the stew, add cheese, lettuce, and your favorite toppings.
- Stuffed Peppers: Hollow out bell peppers and fill with Res Guisada and rice, then bake.
- Empanada Filling: Encase in pastry dough, then bake or fry for a delightful snack.
- Quesadillas: Sandwich the stew between tortillas with cheese and grill.
- Pasta Sauce: Add to cooked pasta for a meaty, rich sauce.
- Rice Bowl: Layer over rice with other toppings like avocado, salsa, and sour cream.
- Shepherd’s Pie: Use as a filling, top with mashed potatoes, and bake.
Special Tools/Equipment Needed
- Heavy-bottomed Pot or Dutch Oven: Retains heat well, ensuring even cooking and preventing the stew from burning at the bottom.
- Sharp Chef’s Knife: Essential for efficiently cutting meat and chopping vegetables uniformly.
- Wooden Spoon: Useful for stirring without scratching the pot’s surface.
- Meat Tenderizer: If the beef cuts are tough, this helps break down the fibers for a more tender result.
- Tongs: Helpful for turning and browning meat pieces evenly.
- Lid or Aluminum Foil: Needed to cover the pot and allow the stew to simmer.
- Ladle: For serving the stew without spills.
- Measuring Spoons and Cups: Ensuring precise amounts of ingredients.
Res guisada is a type of beef stew from the Dominican Republic (Also check out Spanish Beef Stew). It is a fairly straightforward recipe that anyone could follow, as it uses basic ingredients and cheaper cuts of beef.
You can make this dish yourself by following all the steps and tips outlined above in no time. We hope you have found this article helpful.
Now, you can enjoy a bowl of this comforting and hearty dish when you wish to make something different.
Frequently Asked Questions
What’s The Origin Of Res Guisada?
Res Guisada originates from Latin America, particularly the Caribbean regions. Countries have unique variations, but the foundational elements—slow-cooked beef in a rich sauce—remain consistent.
Can I Use Chicken Or Pork Instead Of Beef?
Absolutely! While beef is traditional, both chicken and pork can be substituted. They might require adjusted cooking times, especially chicken, which typically cooks faster than beef.
What’s The Best Cut Of Beef For Res Guisada?
Skirt or round are commonly used, but chuck, brisket, or any stew meat works well due to the slow cooking process, which tenderizes the meat.
Can I Add Other Vegetables To The Stew?
Definitely! Feel free to add veggies like carrots, potatoes, or peas. Remember that harder vegetables might need more cooking time to soften.
Is There A Vegetarian Version Of Res Guisada?
You can make a vegetarian version by substituting beef with hearty vegetables like mushrooms, eggplant, or even beans and lentils. These alternatives will provide a similar texture and richness to the dish.
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