Monday, May 2, 2011

Basic Fajitas

Jennifer S.

Before you ask, yes, there is soy sauce in this recipe (I consider it the "secret ingredient") I got the idea years ago when I asked the cook in a Mexican restaurant about his great fajitas, so I feel I'm on safe ground. Skirt steak is traditional, but you can really use whatever beef you like, boneless skinless chicken breast, pork loin or peeled/vein removed shrimp.

•1.5-2 lbs skirt steak or other beef, pork loin or chicken cut into strips. Or shrimp. Use a combination of meats. You can also use sliced Portobello mushroom caps.
•1 medium onion, sliced
•2 large Bell peppers, sliced - two different colors is nice, seeded and sliced.
•1/4 cup soy sauce
•1/4 cup lime juice
•1 teaspoon chili powder
•2 Tablespoons oil

1. Combine soy sauce, lime juice, chili powder, and oil. If grilling, save a couple of Tablespoons aside to toss with the vegetables.
2. Slice the meat into about 1/2 inch slices. If using skirt steak, flank steak, or other meat with an obvious grain (lines through the meat), be sure to cut perpendicular to the grain, or you will be chewing a very long time. (Think about it - you want to create a lot of short fibers, not a few long ones.) It helps to put meat in the freezer for about and hour before slicing. Makes it easier to cut.
3. If cooking in a skillet, marinate everything together in a bowl or plastic bag (a zip-type works well). If grilling, marinate the meat and veggies separately. 2 hours to over night is great. Only marinate shrimp and mushrooms for about 20-30 min before cooking.
4. If grilling, remove from marinade and grill.
5. For cooking in a skillet (preferably regular, not nonstick), cook the meat first (it will probably take two batches, depending upon your pan). Add a little oil to the skillet and get it very hot (the oil will shimmer). If you don't get it hot enough (or crowd too much meat in), the meat will steam instead of browning. When the meat is browned, remove and add veggies. When they begin to soften, return meat to skillet to heat through.
6. Serve with salsa or fresh pico de gallo, sour cream, cilantro (if desired, shredded cheese,guacamole. Place in tortillas and top as desired.

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