Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Zilzil Alecha (Beef in Greenpepper Sauce)

Zilzil Alecha [photo]

Some things just grab you, know what I mean? In my case it's chocolate, endless repeats of my favourite girly guilty pleasure movies (Ten Things I Hate About You and Dirty Dancing for the curious amongst you), and seeing our kitten curled up in a ball on the couch. Cuteness, thy name is JD.

Another thing that grabs me is exotic food, but you knew that right? Now I confess, I knew very little (read: nothing) about Ethiopian cuisine up until September last year when we went to a lovely little ethnic restaurant for TheHusband's birthday. We ordered the set menu and proceeded to chomp our way through several delicious curries, stews and vegetable dishes. All wrapped up in sour, spongy injeera. Oh the injeera! I walked out of there, vowing to research and reproduce the meal at home. Well, I did the research, but never got around to whipping out my lentils (so to speak) and producing an Ethiopian feast.

Blazing Hot WokJoanne of Eats Well With Others must've known I needed a kick in the butt, because guess what country she chose as the theme for this month's Regional Recipes blog event? I dragged out my loooong list of bookmarked recipes and this one stood out from the crowd. It sounded fairly straightforward - beef strips in a green pepper sauce and honestly, it was pretty straightforward to prepare too. It shouldn't come as a surprise that it was darn tasty as well. Just take care not to overcook your beef strips - the last thing anyone wants is dried out, chewy beef strips. Even if they do come coated in a delicious green pepper sauce.
Zilzil alecha [photo]

Zilzil Alecha (Beef in Greenpepper Sauce)
Adapted from Astray Recipes 
Serves 6 - 8 (served along with other dishes and injera)

3 medium sized green bellpeppers
1/4 cup butter 
1 kg boneless sirloin or soft shin, cut into strips
1 large onion, finely chopped
1 large green chili pepper, finely chopped
1 tbsp minced garlic
2.5 cm (1 inch) fresh ginger root, roughly chopped
1/2 tbsp ground turmeric
1/2 tsp ground cardamom
1 1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp ground pepper
1/4 cup water

1. Grill two of the greenpeppers in the oven until the skins have blackened. Remove and allow to cool. Peel of the skins, remove the pips and roughly chop. Add to a food processor along with the chili pepper, garlic, ginger, turmeric, cardamom, salt and pepper and puree.
2. Meanwhil, heat a little bit of the butter in a large frying pan over high heat, then quickly brown the beef in batches, adding more butter as needed. Remove beef and set aside.
3. Add onion to frying pan and saute over medium-high heat for 5 minutes. Cut the remaining one greenpepper into strips and add to the onion, frying for another 5 minutes.
4. Add the greenpepper sauce and water to the pan and bring to the boil. Add seared beef strips, lower heat to medium-low, partially cover and cook for another 5 to 10 minutes or until the meat is done to your liking.

Nutritional info (per serving): Calories 368.2 , Total fat 18.2 g, Saturated fat 8.6 g, Polyunsaturated fat 0.7 g, Monounsaturated fat 6.6 g, Cholesterol 144.6 mg, Sodium 143.1 mg, Potassium 691.3 mg, Total carbohydrate 4.9 g, Dietary fiber 0.9 g, Sugars 1.0 g, Protein 44.2 g
Good source of: Vitamin B12 68.1 %, Selenium 67.9 %, Zinc 63.0 %, Vitamin C 53.2 %, Phosphorus 36.8 %, Niacin 31.8 %, Iron 29.4 %,

6 comments:

Joanne on July 28, 2010 4:17 am said...

Somehow I didn't come across this recipe in all of my Ethiopian food searches! Too bad because I would have loved to make this...totally bookmarked. I loved my first Ethiopian experience as well...now if only I could learn to make injera...

nina on July 28, 2010 5:17 am said...

Different and yet so heatwarming and comforting. Interesting flavors! Was it very hot?

Marisa on July 28, 2010 7:37 am said...

Joanne - This is quite an unusual one isn't it? The flavour profile fits the Ethiopian food I've tasted though, so I assume it's authentic!

Nina - No, not very hot at all. I was afraid to add the whole chili pepper, so at first only added half. But then I tasted it and added the rest and the end result was still quite manageable! The hotness level is similar to say butter chicken.

tandysinclair.com on July 28, 2010 8:44 am said...

I am not keen at all on green peppers but the flavours are right up my street

Jessica on July 28, 2010 10:47 am said...

The flavours in this dish sound very interesting (and tasty) and it looks easy to prepare! The green meat looks a bit funny I'm sure you forget about it as soon as you taste it :P

Marisa on July 28, 2010 11:19 am said...

Tandy - Think you should substitute with red or yellow peppers then. :-)

Jessica - I didn't even notice the meat had a green hue to it, just goes to show how unobservant I am. Whoops...

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