What’s For Lunch? Ham-Steak, Roasted Mushrooms and Maduros


I love ham steak; especially when it’s braised, UPC style!

Recently on my Facebook page (if you guys haven’t been there, definitely drop in and give me a shout out) I shared a link to a food prep video, where a professional goes through the steps she takes to prep food for pictures. It was quite a little demonstration, and a little bit sad that they have to work so hard to make their food appetizing… I mentioned then, and am reiterating now: I guarantee you that I am showing you pictures of real food, which I have prepared for my meal, and I am taking time before eating to take a photo of the food that I am about to eat. To demonstrate that, I am including a picture of the above meal half-finished later in this post. I just think it’s important to make good, appetizing food. And if you do a great job with your cooking, it should be photo worthy too!!

Braised Ham Steak, Mushrooms and Maduros; What you’ll need:

  • 1 lb Ham Steak (from a quality farm, please! This one is from Vermont Smoke And Cure; the makers of my favorite bacon)
  • Optional Spices: Pepper, Nutmeg, Turmeric (You probably don’t need salt…)
  • 2 cups chopped Mushrooms (I used a frozen organic mixed bag)
  • 2 ripe Plantains, sliced and baked/fried (see here for Baked Maduros instructions)
  • Greens (I used Arugula)

Serves: 2
Cook and Prep Time: 65 minutes

1. Begin cooking the ham-steak in a wide pan with 1 cup of water on medium heat.
Note: You may need to start the Maduros first if you’re baking them

2. Add the mushrooms around the outside of the ham-steak, and spice the top of the ham-steak.

3. Check on the steak every 10 minutes, refreshing the water to a 1-cup level in the pan. Do not cover the pan or flip the steak.

4. About 5 minutes before meal-time, prepare the plates with a bed of greens for the ham-steak, mushrooms, and maduros. Serve and enjoy!!


Notes about this meal:

Braised Meat: I really enjoy all versions of slow-cooked meat, and braising is one of my absolute favorites! Properly done, braised meat takes hours rather than the 1 hour that I allotted for this meal. If you have the time, I highly recommend taking the full amount of time to do a proper braise. If you do this right, the top of the meat should have a caramelized layer on the top. It’s a delightful flavor and color, and looks particularly excellent on pork!
Maduros: You’ve all seen my steps for baked maduros. They’re delicious, and I highly recommend eating your maduros baked. If you don’t have the time for that, or forgot to start them before starting the meal, fried maduros are an excellent consolation to their better baked brother. Just use some oil and heat them on medium-high heat for at least 20 minutes, 10 minutes per side. Continue to flip and cook them as you have time to a maximum of about 40 minutes. The longer you can cook them, the better they’ll taste!


  • Last chance for Dessert – I asked which desserts people miss from their SAD diets; send them along if you want me to attempt to translate them in to Paleo desserts.
  • What kind of slow-cooked meals are your favorite? Smoked? Braised? Crock-pot slow-cooked? Barbeque? Left-it-on-the-stove-and-forgot? Pig-Roast?
  • Do you cook this yourself? Do you go to a friend or family member for this?
  • What is the recipe/steps to make it? What makes it special?

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0 thoughts on “What’s For Lunch? Ham-Steak, Roasted Mushrooms and Maduros

  • laurasmess

    Mmmm, ham steak! Yum. I’ve never tried plantains before but I’m super curious… do they taste anything like bananas? I always imagine them like some sort of underripe green banana in flavour. Oh, and re questions: I adore slow cooking meats. Preferably 6 hours or more. Makes dinner easy, delicious and fall-apart in terms of meaty goodness 🙂

    • urbanpaleochef

      They are definitely similar to bananas. When you cook them ripe, they’re called “Maduros” or Sweet Plantains and they’re sweeter than a cooked banana – though with a lower sugar content (I guess there’s more fiber?). When you cook them green, they’re called Plantains or Platanos, and they are very similar to a potato in consistency and usage, though the flavor is unique and quite difficult to describe.
      In usage: I use Maduros (same fruit, but ripe) all by themself, and prefer to bake them, as shown in the post all about Maduros! For green plantains: I use these for all sorts of meals! They’re great to put things in, like rice (look up my post on Paella Mofongo!!), or to put things on, like a potato. You can cook them in large pieces, so that they’ll look and behave like a baked potato, or you can mash them, or you can cook them in smaller pieces and use them for dipping or as a base for a particular sauce.