Sizzling fajitas with arroz verde
|March 22, 2010||Posted by ameliaps under any season, fajitas, meats, mexican|
It was the south-of-the-border vaqueros (cowboys) who transformed that tough beef cut called skirt steak into delicious fajitas by first marinating it for a long time and then rolling it up into a flour tortilla with a few grilled vegetables. And now they ever so popular in the U.S. The longer you marinate the meat (over-night is best) the more it will be tenderized and the trick is to use acid ingredients, such as lime juice or other citrus (even coca-cola will work). I also add Tequila to my marinade! I like my meat already cut in strips before marinating to allow for more surface to absorb the marinade, but of course you could marinate a big skirt stake piece and cut it after grilling…your call! The best way to cook fajitas is to char-grill them on an open fire, but oven-broiling or stovetop-grilling is also ok, when an open fire is not an option. Serve along with pico-de-gallo, sour-cream, lime wedges and possibly guacamole.
I served the fajitas along side another popular Mexican dish called “arroz verde” which means “green rice”. Puréed spinach, poblanos and cilantro add color and zest to bland rice. I think the traditional arroz verde does not call for spinach, but I liked having the extra vegetable serving from the recipe I used (see below).
You have to have a cerveza with all this! Salud!
1 pound top-round “fajita”-sliced beef (that is, cut into long strips)
1/2 cup vegetable oil
Juice of 3 limes
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 onion, minced
2 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1/4 cup Tequila
1 Tbsp brown sugar
2 tsp cumin powder
1 tsp freshly groud black pepper
1 tsp kosher salt
1 Tbsp chili powder
Fresh cilantro, chopped, TT
Peppers and Onions:
2 Tbsp olive oil
1 large onion, cut into slivers
2 colorful bell peppers, cut into strips
For serving: flour tortillas, pico-de-gallo, sour cream, lime wedges, guacamole (and don’t forget a cold cerveza!)
Marinate the meat: combine all ingredients in a glass (or non-reactive) bowl and mix well. Add the meat and allow to marinate in the refrigerator overnight or up to 24 hours.
Cook the onions and peppers: heat a frying pan (or a heavy skillet) and add the olive oil. When the oil is heated, add the onion and pepper strips and stir-fry until wilted, 3 or 4 minutes. Season as needed with salt and pepper. Remove from the pan and keep them warm until ready to assemble the tortillas.
Grill the meat: Heat your coals (or your cast-iron skillet, with a tablespoon or two of oil, if cooking on a stove-top – which is what I used, and it worked great!). When the coals are are hot, drain the marinade from the meat, and grill it a few minutes per side.
Add the peppers and onions to heat up.
Let rest a couple of minutes then served rolled up in a tortilla with the onions and peppers and all the condiments, and a scoop of arroz verde (I use a 1/2 cup metal mesure to make a nice round serving).
OH, so tasty!
Recipe from Mod Mex by Scott Lindquist and Joanna Pruess
3 poblano chiles
3 tablespoons canola oil
1 1/2 cups diced yellow onion
1 teaspoon chopped garlic
2 cups Long-grain white rice
4 cups warm water
2 cups firmly packed spinach leaves
2 cups firmly packed fresh cilantro leaves
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
Roast and peel the poblano chiles. Set aside. Heat a medium-size pot over medium-high heat, add the oil, onion, and garlic and sauté until the onion is translucent. Add the rice and cook for 2 minutes more. Add the water and bring to a rapid boil over high heat. Lower the heat, cover, and cook for 20 minutes, or until all the water is absorbed and the rice is cooked. Remove the pan from the heat and let the rice cool. Meanwhile, in a large pot, cover the spinach and cilantro with water. Bring just to a boil and then drain and shock the spinach and cilantro under cold water. Working with a handful at a time, squeeze out the excess water.
In the jar of an electric blender, combine the spinach, cilantro, and poblanos and purée until smooth. In a bowl, blend the rice with the spinach purée and season to taste with salt and pepper. In a saucepan, heat the rice over medium heat, stirring frequently, and serve with lime wedges.
I suggested above to use a metal cup measure to scoop out perfect rounded portions to serve on a plate.