From: Laura Ann Wallace

Date: Thu, 29 Jul 1993 18:12:10 -0600 (CST)

From: Ward Tomlinson

Subject: COLLECTION: Fajitas

Date: Mon, 19 Jul 93 16:11 CST


--------- FAJITAS 1

Well, I wing my fajitas every time I do them, but here's a guess at the

2 Tablespoons oil
1 1/2 lbs boneless, skinless chicken breasts and thighs cut in thin slices
1 large onion, cut in slivers from pole to pole
1 green bell pepper, cut in slivers pole to pole
1 red bell pepper, cut (you guess it) in slivers pole to pole
4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
2 Tablespoons chili powder
3 teaspoons ground cumin
1 teaspoon black pepper
ground red pepper (to taste)
salt (to taste)
flour tortillas

In a large wok, warm the oil.  Cook the chicken slices until done, stir
regularly.  Add everything except tortillas.  Mix well.  Cook covered.
Stir every few minutes.  It's done when the peppers are tender and the
vegetables are starting to get browned in spots.  Serve with warmed flour
tortillas.  (I warm them individually in the microwave for 20 secs.)

Additional toppings for the fajitas can include salsa, sour cream,
avacados, and tomatos.  To me cheese is a sacrilege; but, to each his own.

NOTE:  My grocer carries "fajita tortillas".  These are smaller and
thicker than ones I would use for burritos.  They hold up much better with
the fajita filling.

NOTE 2:  If tortillas are not handy, use pita halves.  They work great.

- Jeff

--------- FAJITAS 2

Fajitas are marinated skirt steak. This is the diaphragm muscle
in the cow. Anything else is NOT a true fajita.

1 skirt steak for each 4 people ( this is the diaphragm muscle)
Kraft Zesty Italian Salad Dressing.

Flour tortillas
Refried beans
Grated cheddar cheese
diced tomatoes

Marinate skirt steak in enough salad dressing to cover meat,
for a full 24 Hours, NOT LESS!

grill steak over charcoal (mesquite is best)

slice steak with the grain into thin strips

warm tortilla (works great to wrap in Saran wrap and heat in microwave)
spread some beans down center of tortilla, add some meat, top with
other condiments, roll into a tube and enjoy.

Not bad, but if you live in a part of the country where you can get "real"
Mexican food products, you can marinate the meat in something called "mojo
criollo". This comes in bottles and consists of oil, vinegar and an
assortment of other spices. It's specifically for this kind of use. It's
available in most Supermarkets around here.

Tom's recipe mentions a couple of important points:
1) Marinate the meat overnight at least. It makes a big difference. You
can also do this with skinless, boneless chicken breasts.

2) Slice the meat *after* cooking, not before. The pre-cut beef and chicken
products "for fajitas" you see some places just don't come up to snuff.

--------- FAJITAS 3:  (from USENET cookbook)

Fajitas originated in Texas as a way to make cheap meat
palatable.  Unfortunately, it was too successful. It is
still palatable, but because the word is out that fajitas
are so delicious, the meat isn't cheap any more. Because
this is not a traditional Mexican dish but a recent inven-
tion of Mexican immigrants, there is no fixed formula for
it. Many different Kinds of marinade are used; this one is
adapted from a recipe given to a friend over the phone by
Tortuga's in Austin, Texas.

INGREDIENTS (serves 8)
     3 lb      skirt steak
     2         large yellow onions
     2 Tbsp    vegetable oil
     16        flour or whole-wheat tortillas
     2 cups    grated cheese
     3 cups    guacamole
     1 cup     lime juice
     1 Tbsp    ground black pepper
     2 Tbsp    garlic, minced
     1/2 cup   fresh cilantro, chopped
     2         scallions, chopped (green onions)
     2         large tomatoes, chopped
     1 tsp     garlic, minced

  (1)  Combine marinade ingredients in a large glass baking dish.

          (2)  Peel the fatty membrane from both sides of the
       skirt Steak. This requires a very sharp knife. Add
       meat to marinade and marinate for at least 4
       hours, preferably overnight. Keep it in the refri-
       gerator if you marinate overnight.

          (3)  Make the pico de gallo: combine all of the
       ingredients in a small serving bowl.

          (4)  Slice the yellow onions into 1/4-inch slices, and
       cut each slice into a semicircle. Grill the meat
       until  it is cooked slightly less than the way you
       like it. Meanwhile, saute' the onions in the oil
       until they are soft. Use a large frying pan that
       will have enough room for the meat later.

          (5)  After removing the meat from the grill, slice it
       into strips that are cut across the grain. The
       strips should be 3-4 inches long and 1/4 inch
       thick. Add the strips to the onions in the pan,
       and fry for another minute or two.

          (6)  Place on the table the pan full of meat, the bowl
       of pico de gallo, a basket with the tortillas, a
       bowl with the guacamole, and a bowl with the
       grated cheese. You may wish to provide picante
       sauce in addition.

          (7)  Each person makes their own fajita by taking a tor-
       tilla, spooning some of the meat onto it, then
       adding their choice of each of the other ingredients
       in whatever combination they want.

     Skirt steak is somewhat like flank steak: somewhat tough,
     and with a very stringy texture. It is covered on both sides
     with a fatty membrane that must be removed or the meat will
     be very tough. The key to good fajitas is the proper removal
     of this membrane.

     Fresh-squeezed lime juice is best, but bottled will do.

     Some people from out of state choose to put sour cream on
     their fajitas.

 Time: 45 minutes preparation, several hours marinating,
10 minutes cooking.  Precision: no need to measure.

Organization: Texas Instruments


Prep: 10 Min.   Marinade: 1 Hour   Cook: 10 to 15 Minutes
Serves: 6

1 1/2 lbs. skinless, boneless chicken breasts
  1/4 cup  bottled taco sauce (Tabasco or the like)
    3 tbs  lime juice (best if real limes used)
    3 tbs  tequila
    2 ea   jalapeno peppers, seeded and minced
    1 ea   crushed dried habanero
    2 ea   garlic cloves, minced
    1 tsp  salt
  1/2 tsp  ground cumin
   12 ea   flour tortillas
           Salsa                       \
           Guacamole                    \
           shredded lettuce              \ as accompaniment
           sour cream                    /
           shredded cheese              /
           Pico de Gallo               /

           Rinse chicken breasts and pat dry.  Trim off any fat or
gristle.  In a large bowl, combine taco sauce, lime juice, tequila,
jalapenos, garlic, salt, and cumin.  Add chicken and toss to coat.
Cover and marinate, tossing occasionally, 1 to 2 hours at room
temperature, or up to 12 hours refrigerated.

           Prepare a hot fire.  Set chicken on an oiled grill 4 to
6 inches from heat.  Grill, turning and basting with marinade
several times, until chicken is white throughout but still moist,
8 to 10 minutes.  Let stand 3 to 5 minutes before cutting or tearing
into large strips.

           While chicken is standing, heat tortillas directly on
grill for 20 to 30 seconds per side, or wrap in foil in 2 packages,
6 tortillas to a package, and warm, turning several times, 3 to 5

           To serve, put chicken strips on tortillas.  Top with
salsa, guacamole, shredded lettuce, and sour cream.  Roll up and

Serving Suggestions: Serve with "Black Bean Salad" and top shelf


FAJITAS 5: Shrimp Fajitas

None of the recipes I've tried seemed worth posting, until this
one.  It's so darned good, I had to share it.

1 pound shrimp, shelled
1 cup lightly packed chopped cilantro
1 clove garlic, pressed
1/3 cup lime juice
4-6 flour tortillas
1 Tbsp vegetable oil
2 green bell peppers, sliced
1 onion, sliced
1/2 cup plain non-fat yogurt
green salsa (optional)

Marinate shrimp in lime juice with garlic and cilantro for 20
minutes at room temperature.  Warm tortillas in foil in oven.
Heat oil in skillet and saute bell peppers and onions for 10
minutes, stirring occasionally.  Take vegetables out and put
shrimp with juice in.  Cook on high heat about 3 minutes until
done (cut to test, should be opaque in center).  Put vegetables
back in pan, warm them up, add yogurt.  Place mixture on flour
tortillas, roll them up, and top with salsa.

This recipe came from a cookbook which I think was entitled
"Light & Lively" by Sunset...something like that.  As you can
see, it is a low-fat as well as nutritious meal.  Yum yum! (Lisa Petersen)
School of Ocean and Earth Science and Technology

--------- FAJITAS 6

I have a very easy recipe that I use (I think I got it from the back
of the tortilla package).

Marinate strips of steak and or chicken in Italian Dressing for a couple
of hours.  (I have marinated over night)

Cook meat in hot skillet in a little bit of oil.  Add green pepper,
red pepper and onions (that have been sliced).  Add the rest of marinade
to the skillet and cook until the veg. are tender and the meat is done.
You can season with garlic, but I find the seasoning in the dressing
to be fine.

Serve on warmed tortillas with chopped lettuce, tomatoes and sour cream.

YUMMY! and its real easy.


--------- FAJITAS 7

  LIME JUICE is our basic fajitas recipe.  Marinate the beef or chicken
in lots of lime juice, at least a few hours.  Then we grill (if it's a fillet)
or saute (if it's strips or raining), sauteeing usually with cumin.

To serve:  my husband prefers plain meat with some fresh coriander leaves
added as he wraps in tortillas.  I want more vegies so I usually sautee
onions and peppers, usually with lots of cumin and some garlic, but the
spices varies.  I also eat the fajitas with the fresh coriander, yogurt,
and maybe chopped tomatoes or some salsa.

The fresh coriander is essential for us.

  Aiko Pinkoski           Epoch Systems, Inc.          8 Technology Drive
  uunet!epochsys!aiko     Westborough, MA  011581
                          (508) 836-4711 ext. 307
--------- FAJITAS 8:  Real Tex-Mex Fajitas

This is a fajita recipe by one of my dad's college buddies, Abel
Garcia, a native Texan.  The quantities are party-sized.

10 lbs. fajitas (flank or skirt steak)
4 lemons or limes plus rinds
1 can beer or wine
1 6oz can pineapple juice
2 tbsp vinegar
2 tbsp tenderizer
2 sweet onions, sliced (not diced)
8 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp lemon pepper
1 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp oregano
1 tsp black pepper

Mix all the ingredients of the marinade together, then trim the meat.
Marinade the meat overnight (we put it in big ziplock bags) in the

Cook over a hot fire on the grill til medium.  Grill the onions too,
if you like (fresh sliced bell peppers are also good).  Have the
buffet ready when you start grilling the meat:  tortillas, diced
tomatoes and onions, refried beans, guacamole, sour cream, grated
cheese, pico de gallo, salsa, etc.  While the meat is still hot
off the grill, slice it into strips and serve.

Laura Wallace


------------FAJITAS  9   Fajitas on the Grill
from the "El Paso Chili Company's Texas Border Cookbook"
by Park and Norma Kerr

Here is a grand mixed fajita parrilla: grilled skirt steak, lobster, chicken,
and shrimp--a real party. On simpler occasions we halve the marinade
and use just one or two of the main components.
     Two practical notes: The live lobsters can be replaced with 4 defrosted
frozen lobster tails, slightly undercooked according to the directions on
the package. And, although some grill manufacturers warn against heavy
basting, Park has always just dumped all the remaining marinade over the
fajitas on the grill (the fuming cloud of steam and smoke is full of flavor)
and he reports it has not harmed his grill.

2 1/4 pounds (2 or 3 pieces) skirt steak
1 1/2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts, halved
      and trimmed of fat and connective tissue
1 pound (about 18) large shrimp, shelled and deveined
2 live lobsters (about 1 1/2 pounds each)

2 Tbsp plus 1 tsp salt
2 cups tomato-based bottled hot salsa
1 cup chopped red onion
1 cup packed fresh cilantro (stems may be used)
4 fresh jalapeno chiles, stemmed and chopped
1/4 C gold tequila
1/4 C fresh lime juice
1 cup amber beer, such as Dos Equis

24 6-inch flour tortillas, warmed
Pico de Gallo

     Bring a very large pot of water to a boil. Stir in 2 tablespoons
salt, add the lobsters, and cook them, stirring once or twice, for 10
minutes. The lobsters' tails, when straightened, should snap back in place,
and the lobster meat should be almost fully cooked. Cool the lobsters to
room temperature in a colander. Crack open the claws and body shell and
remove the lobster meat in pieces as large as possible. The lobsters can be
cooked up to 1 day in advance. Wrap the meat and refrigerate it.
     In a food processor, working in batches if necessary, puree together the
salsa, red onions, cilantro, jalapenos, tequila, lime juice, and 1 teaspoon
salt. Stir in the beer. In two or three shallow nonreactive dishes, combine
the lobster meat, skirt steaks, chicken breasts, and shrimp with the
marinade. Cover and let them stand at room temperature, stirring
once or twice, for 2 hours. Thread the shrimp on skewers.
     Preheat a gas grill (medium-high) or light a charcoal fire and let it
burn down until the coals are evenly white. Position the rack about 6 inches
from the heat source. Lay the skirt steaks on the grill and spoon half the
will be steam and smoke), and cover the grill. Cook another 7 minutes,
turning the chicken breasts, lobster meat, and shrimp at the halfway point,
     Transfer the steaks and chicken breasts to a cutting board, tent them with
foil, and let them rest 10 minutes. Keep the shrimp warm. Slice the lobster
nd serve immediately, accompanied by the warmed tortillas, pico de gallo,
and guacamole.

-----------FAJITAS 10  Winter Fajitas
from the "El Paso Chili Company's Texas Border Cookbook"
by Park and Norma Kerr

These indoor fajitas are for the dead of winter, when the grill is
buried under a snowdrift, or for any time, really, when you just don't
want to cook outdoors. This marinade is slightly different from the
one we use for our grilled fajitas (above), it boosts the flavor with
chipotles and liquid smoke flavoring to make up for the lack of an
open flame. Cook these in one or two heavy cast-iron skillets or
on a large ridged cast-iron grill pan that will fit across two burners.
(Those cute little fajita skillets that come with a wood or wicker
holder are useless for cooking on, but two or three can be preheated
and used as serving pieces.) Be sure to turn off the smoke alarm before
setting out to make this recipe.

2 l/2 to 3 pounds skirt steak, cut into -inch sections
Nonstick cooking spray
1 large onion (about 1 pound), peeled, halved, and cut
    into thin slices
2 large heavy sweet red peppers, stemmed, cored, and cut
     into julienne strips
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup tomato-based bottled hot salsa
1/2 C chopped red onion
1/2 C packed fresh cilantro (stems can be used)
1/4 cup olive oil
3 chipotles adobado, with clinging sauce
2 Tbsp tequila
2 Tbsp fresh lime juice
1 Tbsp liquid hickory smoke flavoring
1/2 C amber beer, such as Dos Equis

18 6-inch flour tortillas, warmed
Pico de Gallo

note: "chipotles abobabo" are pickled peppers in tomato sauce

     In a food processor, puree salsa, red onions, cilantro, 2 tablespoons of
the olive oil, the chipotles, tequila, lime juice, and liquid smoke. Stir
in the beer. In a shallow nonreactive dish, pour the marinade over the
skirt steak and let it stand at room temperature, covered, turning it
once or twice, for 2 hours.
     Heat one or two heavy cast-iron skillets or a cast-iron stove-top grill
pan over medium-high heat. When they are very hot, lightly coat the skillets
with nonstick cooking spray. Letting the excess marinade drip off, and
working in batches if necessary, place the meat in the skillets. Cook,
turning once or twice, until browned on the outside and medium-rare
inside, 4 to S minutes per side. Transfer the meat to a cutting board
and let it rest for 10 minutes.
    Meanwhile, in a large heavy skillet over medium heat, warm the
remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Stir in the onions and sweet red
peppers, season with salt, and cook, covered, stirring once or twice, for
8 minutes.
    Cut the meat, across the grain and at a slight angle, into thin slices.
Add the meat and any juices from the cutting board to the skillet with the
onions and peppers. Raise the heat to high and cook uncovered, tossing
and stirring, until the meat is heated through and the onions and peppers
are lightly browned, about 5 minutes. Transfer to heated fajita pans or a
large heated platter and serve immediately, accompanied by warmed
tortillas, pico de gallo, and guacamole.

----------FAJITAS 11     BEEF FAJITAs


Beef skirt steaks (you may have to ask the butcher for these outside the
Southwest; they are inexpensive and readily available in the prime fajita areas
of the country such as Texas) [Note that you can use flank steak if forced to
but it just doesn't taste the same.]

Flour tortillas

For the meat marinade:

Olive or other vegetable oil as preferred and about an equal amount of fresh
lime juice (or a combination lime juice and white vinegar); salt; pepper to
taste; minced garlic or garlic powder


salsa, raw sliced onions, shredded mild cheese, diced tomatoes, shredded
lettuce, sour cream, etc.

First, marinate the skirt steaks in the oil/lime juice mixture as described
above. Overnight in the refrigerator works well using a ziploc bag.  The amount
of marinade depends on the amount of meat. [The lime juice imparts an
incredibly sweet and fresh taste to the meat; you will love the effect.]

Prepare your accompaniments and have them ready for guests to use according to
their own preferences.  Some people fry onions (instead of using them raw) and
others cook some green pepper as accompaniments.  I personally think that this
detracts from a simple fresh taste, but hey this is food, not medicine...

Grill the fajitas outside (over wood charcoal if you can get it)--over a medium
hot fire this will require about 10 minutes a side.  After grilling, allow the
skirt steaks to sit for a couple of minutes, then slice across the grain in
relatively thin slices.

Warm the flour torillas slightly (microwave will do nicely if you aren't a

Allow people to assemble the fajitas themselves:  slices of meat rolled in the
torillas together with accompaniments of their choice.  You may also want to
have some hot pepper sauce and cilantro also at the ready.

This is a "can't lose" company dish; the meat when re-heated tastes good as
left-overs as well.

Michael Karchmer


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