There is really nothing that I love more than a great carne en salsa from Costa Rica. I spent many years living in San Ramon, and they celebrate Saint Raymond Day in the two weeks leading up to his feast day on August 31. The celebration is also a church fundraiser and there are food vendors downtown competing for the best typical dish – which means I eat a LOT of meat in red sauce. (I’m salivating just thinking about it!) Since it isn’t exactly practical for me to fly to Costa Rica for this dish, I finally got a tutorial from my husband’s uncle on how to make an authentic carne en salsa just like you can find in Costa Rica. Here I share it with you!
- 2 lbs flank steak
- 2 cups beef broth
- 2 carrots, chopped into sticks
- 2 14 oz cans diced tomato or the equivalent of fresh tomatoes
- 1/2 white onion, quartered
- 1/2 bunch cilantro
- 2 cloves garlic
- 4 TB ketchup
- 3 TB soy sauce
- 3 TB Salsa Lizano (optional)
- 1 TB sugar
- salt to taste
*Note about Salsa Lizano: Salsa Lizano is a Costa Rican national product that gives Costa Rican food it’s unique flavor. You can buy it through my affiliate link here. There isn’t a comparable flavor, but some people, in a pinch, use Worcestershire sauce as a substitute, but I don’t think it is nearly as good.
Preparation: Prepare and shred the meat according to the recipe here.
Place all ingredients (except the shredded meat!) in the blender and liquefy. If you are not getting a smooth enough consistency, add a bit more broth. Heat the sauce in a large saucepan on medium until simmering. Stir in the shredded beef and bring to a low boil. I then taste the meat with sauce to see how it is, and add salt or sugar accordingly. This is served with white rice, black beans, and salad for a traditional Costa Rican casado.