For the beef:
4 pounds flank steak
Extra virgin olive oil (EVOO), for drizzling
Salt and pepper
About 2 quarts water
A handful of cilantro (for a bright flavor) or flat leaf parsley (for a grassy flavor)
2-3 sprigs fresh oregano
1 large onion, root attached, peeled and quartered
A few ribs of celery, coarsely chopped
2 carrots, peeled and coarsely chopped
4 large cloves garlic, crushed
2 large fresh bay leaves
For the sauce:
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil (EVOO)
3 medium bell peppers, green, red and yellow, seeded and chopped
1 large red onion, chopped
4 cloves garlic, chopped
1 Fresno chili pepper (a red, fruity hot chili) or jalapeño pepper, seeded and finely chopped
1 1/2 teaspoons cumin (half a palmful)
1 sprig fresh oregano, finely chopped
Salt and pepper
A small handful of cilantro or parsley, finely chopped
1/2 cup pimento-stuffed Spanish olives, chopped
About 3 tablespoons tomato paste
1 can crushed or diced tomatoes (15 ounces)
Dress the meat with EVOO, salt and pepper. Brown the meat over medium-high heat in a Dutch oven. Add water, cilantro or parsley, oregano, onion, celery, carrots, garlic and the bay leaves. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to simmer and cook, uncovered, for 1 1/2 hours. Turn off the heat and let rest for half an hour.
Remove the meat to a shallow platter and shred with forks; cover and reserve. Strain the braising liquids and return to the pot. Reduce over medium-high heat about 30 minutes more.
Meanwhile, prepare the sauce: Heat the EVOO, two turns of the pan, in a deep sauté pan over medium-high heat. Add the peppers, onion, garlic and chili pepper to the EVOO. Season with cumin, oregano, salt and pepper, and cook to soften, 8-10 minutes. Add in the cilantro or parsley, olives and tomato paste; stir a minute, then deglaze with the reduced braising liquid and stir in the tomatoes to combine.
Slide in the shredded beef and simmer for a few more minutes more to allow the beef to soak in the sauce.
Serve with rolls or tortillas for a party snack or serve with rice and beans as a meal. Top the beef with red onions dressed with lime and pickled jalapeños for garnish. This is one of many "Yum-o!" recipes – it's good and good for you. To find out more about Yum-o!, Rachael's nonprofit organization, go to www.yum-o.org.