In Nuyorican culture, one of our favored meals is picadillo (pronounced pee-kah-dee-yo). It’s a ground meat stew that has become one of our specialties. I’ve now discovered there is an Indian version of it, Keema Curry. Even with the different spices, the dishes are very similar. Both are meat-like stews containing tomatoes, and served over rice. The only exception in picadillo is that, sometimes, depending upon preference, you may add potato cubes to it. Nevertheless, if you put them side by side when served with plain boiled rice, it’s hard to tell which is the Picadillo and which is the Keema Curry.
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 onion, peeled and finely chopped
1 clove garlic, peeled and finely minced
2 teaspoons ground ginger (fresh, if possible)
1½ pounds ground beef
1 tablespoon garam masala
½ teaspoon chili powder
1 cup tomatoes, cored and chopped
2 tablespoons tomato paste
2/3 cup beef bouillon
Salt and ground black pepper to taste
1¼ cup unflavored yogurt
- Heat olive oil in a large pan or skillet. Add garlic and fry until golden.
- Stir in ginger, beef, garam masala and chili powder. Fry, stirring, until meat is browned.
- Stir in tomatoes, tomato paste, bouillon, salt, pepper, and half the yogurt. Cover and simmer on heat for about 40 minutes or until meat is cooked. Stir in the remaining yogurt and serve over plain boiled rice.
Yield: 4 servings.
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