Fajitas are sizzling success, even the next day
I found today’s recipe for Gold Medal Sizzling Fajitas on the Food Network website in 2010 courtesy of Paula Deen.
Fajitas are my favorite Mexican food, and this recipe listed a lot of ingredients, but didn’t seem that hard to put together.
Gold Medal Sizzling Fajitas
— 1/4 cup vegetable oil, divided
— 3 tablespoons lemon juice
— 1 garlic clove, minced
— 1 teaspoon ground cumin
— 1 teaspoon garlic powder
— 1 teaspoon onion powder
— Dash hot sauce
— Freshly-ground black pepper
— 1-1/2 pounds meat (boneless, skinless chicken breast, skirt steak or peeled and deveined shrimp)
— 1 medium onion, halved and sliced lengthwise
— 1 green bell pepper, sliced
— 1 red bell pepper, sliced
— 8 8-inch flour tortillas
— 1 lime, juiced for topping
— Sour cream, for topping
— Salsa, for topping
— Guacamole, for topping
— Cheddar cheese, shredded for topping
In a heavy-duty resealable plastic bag, combine two tablespoons of the vegetable oil, lemon juice, garlic, cumin, garlic powder, onion powder, hot sauce, salt, pepper and your choice of meat. Seal and toss the bag around to coat. Marinate in the refrigerator (15 minutes for shrimp, 20 minutes for chicken, and one hour for skirt steak).
Heat cast iron servers in a preheated 400-degree oven for at least 20 minutes to get a good sizzle when you plate the fajitas.
Heat the outside grill or a large indoor grill pan to medium-high heat. Remove the meat from the marinade and place it on the hot grill. Discard the marinade.
Cook chicken until cooked through, about five minutes per side, skirt steak about three minutes per side for medium-rare and about two minutes for shrimp. Slice the chicken and steak into strips if that is what you use.
In a large skillet, heat the remaining two tablespoons of vegetable oil and fry the onions and bell peppers until crisp-tender with some salt and pepper.
Wrap the tortillas in foil and warm them in the oven with the servers for 15 minutes.
I knew when I prepared this dish I would be using chicken.
To get started, I pulled out a gallon-size resealable bag and started adding the marinade ingredients.
About half way through adding the ingredients to the bag, I realized I’d put in not one but two teaspoons of garlic powder instead of one teaspoon of garlic powder and one teaspoon of onion powder. The containers they were in looked identical and I obviously didn’t read.
I debated on doubling the marinade, but decided throw it in the trash and start over, being very careful to read all the labels as I added the ingredients to the bag the second time.
Even though I don’t like spicy food, I did add one dash of hot sauce to the marinade.
Once the marinade ingredients were in the bag, I zipped it and rubbed it between my fingers to mix everything. I unzipped the bag and added the boneless, skinless chicken breast; which I’d cut into small strips hoping they would end up more flavorful.
After zipping the bag, I rubbed the chicken around in the marinade so every piece was coated. I placed the chicken in the refrigerator for 20 minutes while I cut the onion and bell peppers.
I don’t have individual cast iron fajita servers, but I do have two smaller cast iron skillets. I placed both in a 400-degree oven to heat up while I used a larger cast iron skillet to cook the chicken.
Once cooked, I placed the chicken in a covered dish to stay warm while I cooked the onion and peppers. You don’t want to cook these vegetables to death. You want them to be a little crunchy.
At this point, I placed the tortillas in the oven to heat along side the small cast iron skillets (you can heat them in the microwave if you prefer, just don’t wrap them in foil).
Once the vegetables were done, I added the chicken to the pan, tossed everything and divided the mixture between the two smaller cast iron skillets. Everything sizzled when I poured it into the pans.
I placed the skillets in the center of the table and called Brad in to eat.
Since there was so much food, we didn’t use the skillets as individual serving platters, we just admired what was in them
After the prayer, I took a tortilla and piled on the fajita mixture then topped it off with lettuce and squeezed a bit of lime juice over the top. Brad added lettuce and cheese to his, no lime.
We dug in, and agreed these were pretty good. I had to stop myself at two.
There was enough of the mixture for another meal, and the fajitas were just as good reheated as they were the first time, maybe a little better since the flavors had time to meld.
When reading the ingredient list this dish may seem a little overwhelming, but trust me, it’s not. If you try, I think you will be glad you did.
Sarah Condley is an amateur baker and chef who is compiling a cookbook of her favorite recipes.
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