Paleo Mini Papas Rellenas Holy moly. Or as they say in Spanish, GUACAMOLE! I kid, but man, this was a dinner to pass the test of all dinners. And how lucky am I that I get to share this exclusive recipe before the book it’s in even has released! Real lucky, as are you my friends. My friend and fellow health enthusiast, Amanda Torres of The Curious Coconut , wrote Latin American Paleo Cooking  and it is beyond exciting for me to introduce this to you. It is FILLED with incredible, authentic Latin American recipes made without grain, gluten, dairy, or caca. She wrote it with her mother-in-law, Milagros, who is from Puerto Rico. This collaboration fuses the union between paleo and REAL Latin American cuisine that much tighter. I’m also excited to mention that because I am a bit of an addict of this fare, I happily wrote the foreword to this book. Amanda doesn’t know this was for the mere fact that I might be able to persuade her into instant access to her recipes. (Shhhh don’t tell). But seriously, this book  is fabulous!  Here is the table of contents: And my foreword! I must add that I made the Salsa Verde Magica from page 165 and it’s AMAZING! We poured it over our salad AND the Papas Rellenas. And since I’m guessing you’re about done with my yapping, here is the fantastic recipe that will bring joy to your dinner table, and maybe, just a little taste of home too!
Picadillo + Paleo Papas Rellenas
- 2 tbsp (30 ml) extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 cup (150 g) diced red bell pepper
- 1 cup (160 g) diced onion
- 2 tbsp (20 g) minced garlic (about 1 whole head)
- 2 lb (905 g) ground beef
- 1 1/2 tsp (4 g) ground cumin
- 1 1/2 tsp (3 g) dried oregano
- 1 tsp (2 g) ground allspice
- 1 1/2 tsp (9 g) fine Himalayan salt
- 3 tbsp (48 g) tomato paste
- 2 tbsp (17 g) drained capers
- 1/3 cup (33 g) sliced green Manzanilla olives
- 1/3 cup (50 g) raisins
- 1/4 cup (4 g) chopped fresh cilantro or flat-leaf parsley
- 1 to 1 1/2 lb (455 to 680 g) baking potatoes, peeled and quartered
- 2 tbsp (28 g) lard or palm shortening
- 1/2 tsp fine Himalayan salt
- 1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
- 2 to 3 tbsp (16 to 24 g) tapioca starch
- About 1/4 cup (56 g) lard, coconut oil or avocado oil for frying
For the PICADILLO...
In a large saute pan with a lid, heat the olive oil over medium heat for 1 to 2 minutes. Add
the bell pepper and onion and cook until the onion is translucent, 4 to 5 minutes. Add the
garlic and cook for about 2 minutes more. Add the ground beef and cook until browned,
about 15 minutes, stirring occasionally and breaking up all the chunks.
Next, add all the remaining ingredients, except the cilantro, and stir well to combine.
Lower the heat, cover and cook for about 15 more minutes, or until the sauce has thickened.
Turn off the heat and stir in the cilantro. Serve with your favorite side dishes.
For the PAPAS RELLENAS...
Place the quartered potatoes in a large pot with a lid and cover with water. Bring to a boil
over high heat, then lower the heat to a gentle boil and cover. Cook until the potatoes are
tender, 15 to 20 minutes. (NOTE: I actually made the potatoes in the Instant Pot , unpeeled, in a cup of water for 12 minutes high pressure, then peeled afterwards; the peels just fall right off)
Drain the potatoes and place in a mixing bowl. Use a potato masher or a fork to mash
the potatoes until smooth. Add the lard, salt, pepper and tapioca starch and mix to
combine evenly into a dough. You should be able to form balls without the dough
cracking. Allow the dough to cool enough to handle (you can place it in the fridge for a
few minutes, if necessary).
Take 2 tablespoons (28 g) of the dough and roll it into a ball between your hands. Flatten
the ball and curve your palm to make a bowl shape. Add a heaping ½ tablespoon (8 g) of
chilled meat filling to the dough and pinch up the sides to close. If you need a little extra
dough, you can add more. Repeat until all dough is used up, making 12 to 14 balls.
In a small skillet, heat your fat of choice over medium heat until shimmering, 3 to 5 minutes.
Using a slotted spoon, carefully add 4 or 5 balls to the fat. Turn the balls once every 1 to
2 minutes to brown on all sides, cooking for a total of 6 to 9 minutes. Transfer to a paper
towel–lined plate and allow to cool for 3 to 5 minutes before serving. Keep cooking in
batches until all the balls are fried.