This is not a vegetarian recipe. This is an authentic Peruvian recipe, made on Mother's Day by my adorable Peruvian sister-in-law with some help from me and our two husbands.
Start your rice. It's made in a similar fashion to the Brazilian rice, only with 3 to 4 cloves of garlic and no onion. She used a ratio of 1 cup of rice to 1 1/2 cups water....and we made it for 16 people so it was a HUGE pot.
Next, cut your beef into strips (think stir fry) and place in a bowl. Add some chopped garlic, soy sauce and salt. Stir it around until it's all mixed together and then, when nobody is looking, swipe your finger into the blood on the side of the bowl and taste if it's salty enough. Or not. You can be 'truly authentic' or not. Cover and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes. We used almost 3 lbs of beef for 16 people, 7 of them being children so make your best guess on how much you'll need for the number of people you're feeding.
Start peeling potatoes like crazy. Enlist the help of the whole family. As you peel them, put them into a bowl of cold water so they don't get all brown and yucky looking. When you have a few pounds peeled, slice them into french fry sizes and lay out on towels to dry just a tiny bit. Heat some oil in a skillet then start the never-ending process of frying the potatoes. Remove them to a pan/bowl/whatever with some paper towels to absorb some oil. Salt. We used almost 10 pounds and ended up hating potatoes by the end. To make this for my family of 6 I'd probably used 2 to 3 pounds.
While you're frying the potatoes, start chopping some red or green peppers and slicing some onions and tomatoes. You want the peppers in medium sized chunks, the onions in medium-ish slivers (cut from top to bottom, not across the middle) and the tomatoes in wedges (Romas work well for this). Chop up a bunch of cilantro while you're at it. You can also use zucchini cut into slices.
Fry the meat you had marinating in the fridge. You may have to do this in batches in order to get it browned on the outside. You want to sear the meat, not boil it. Remove it to a bowl when done.
Once the potatoes are done, remove any extra oil, leaving a thin layer across the bottom. Add the peppers and cook for a few minutes until medium soft. Add the onions and stir them around for another 2 or 3 minutes. You want them tender crisp, not soggy. Add the tomatoes and cook for a minute or two. Now dump the meat and fried potatoes into the skillet with the vegetables. Throw the cilantro on top. Make sure it's a big skillet. Stir around and turn off the heat.
To serve, put some rice on your plate then top with the beef/potato/veggie mixture or lomo saltado as we call it.
Heave a big sigh that you're finally able to get out of the hot kitchen.....then enjoy some seriously delicious food. Then go back for seconds. And feel free to grab a bite of food from the skillet every time you walk through the kitchen. Hug your sister-in-law and try to convince her to move to Nebraska. Then snitch another bite from the skillet.