Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Monday Dinner - Fajitas

Mmmm...Fajitas. My all-time favorite fajitas are the Cerveza Fajitas from Polvos in Austin. They marinate the beef in beer, for who knows how long, but somehow when you eat them you will be certain it is the best fajita meat you've ever had. They add grilled onions, poblano peppers, guacamole, sour cream, rice and beans in your choice of corn or flour tortilla. I would always get the chili con queso and pour some of that on my fajita before rolling 'er up. Heaven in a tortilla, really. And now I am going to make a plea for someone to please open a Tex-Mex restaurant in Portland. You Portlanders don't know what you're missing. We have fine Mexican food here, but you haven't really eaten until you've had Tex-Mex. I'm more than happy to be a taste tester for you. Anyway, second best will always be my own experimentation, trying to get as close to that food as I can. I have a pretty good queso recipe, but will have to work on it a little more until I figure it out exactly to post it here. 

For these fajitas, we used flank steak. A rather large flank steak. We marinated it in Tecate (2 cans) for about 3 hours - though I'm pretty certain you could get away with marinating it overnight, too.

1 large flank steak
2 cans Tecate beer (go ahead and get a six-pack. You can drink it while you cook)
Lawry's Seasoning Salt
Cumin powder
Chili powder
1 large white or yellow onion
Red, green, yellow or orange bell peppers
Grated cheddar or cotija cheese
Flour or corn tortillas (we got the freshly made ones from Fred Meyer - they were really really good)
Sour cream
Mexican rice (cooked according to instructions on box)
Refried beans (heated through in a saucepan)

Put the steaks in a Ziploc baggie and cover with 2 cans of beer. Marinate for up to 24 hours, giving it a shake every once in a while to get even coverage.

Put steaks on a platter and season both sides with salt, pepper, Lawry's, cumin powder and chili powder to taste.

Heat your coals or propane grill to high heat. Sear steak on one side for 5-7 minutes. Flip and cook for another 2-3 minutes for rare, 3-5 for medium rare. We don't recommend cooking flank steak any more than medium rare - it's such a thin cut that you can easily over cook it, but if you want medium go ahead and cook for 5-7 minutes on the second side.

Pull it off the heat and let it rest for at least 5 minutes. Cut into thin slices.

Grill onions and bell peppers on medium-high heat for about 5 minutes per side. If the onions look a little burnt, that's good. They're good when they're a little black.

Cut peppers into thin slices. Chop cilantro roughly. Heat your tortillas (wrapped in foil) on the dying embers for about 5 minutes - you just want them warmed through.

On a plate, arrange tortillas and top with beans, rice, steak, onions, peppers, cheese, sour cream and cilantro. Roll up and enjoy!

Buen provecho!

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