Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Sizzling Fajita's

Since I've been working in Des Moines and only going back to Waterloo on the weekends, Luke has been deprived of my good cooking. Last week, he requested that I make fajita's. It worked out well as it was Cinco de Mayo this past Saturday. This recipe was the recipe of the day on Food I followed the recipe for the marinade, but I didn't cook everything according to the directions. I cooked the chicken first in the saute pan. Once the chicken was done, I removed that from the pan, then added the vegetables. I also added fresh mushrooms, along with the peppers and onions. After the veggies were almost done cooking, I added the chicken back in to heat everything together. These were delicious and also created leftovers for my wonderful husband so he was very happy about that. All in all, this was a very easy recipe. I'm looking forward to making it again, but using shrimp instead. Enjoy!

(Courtesy of Paula Dean)

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 2 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. *Cook's Note: 15 minutes for shrimp, 20 minutes for chicken and 1 hour for skirt steak.

Preheat your cast iron servers in a preheated 400 degree F 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 5 minutes per side, skirt steak about 3 minutes per side for medium-rare and about 2 minutes for shrimp. Slice the chicken and steak into strips if you are using.

In a large skillet heat up the remaining 2 tablespoons 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.

When you are ready to serve, remove the cast iron servers from the oven and quickly arrange the meat and peppers and onions on it. It will immediately start to sizzle from their fat and moisture. Serve sizzling immediately with the warm tortillas and other accompaniments.

Monday, May 7, 2012


In honor of Cinco de Mayo this past Saturday, I made homemade fajita's (recipe to follow in next post) and guacamole for Luke and I to enjoy. I slowly but surely beginning to like guacamole. I figured if I made it myself, I could control the ingredients and the spice level. The last time I had guacamole, it seemed almost like a soup and not a dip. The avocados had just been mashed way too much. I think this recipe turned out very well. Luke seemed to like it. I forgot to buy cilantro when I was at the store, so that was not included in my dip, but I'm sure it could only make it better. I think this dip would be great to serve at a party, just make sure to keep the lid on so it doesn't turn brown. :) Also, letting it sit in the fridge, definitely enhanced the flavors.


3 avocados - peeled, pitted, and mashed
1 lime, juiced
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup diced onion
3 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
2 roma (plum) tomatoes, diced
1 teaspoon minced garlic
1 pinch ground cayenne pepper (optional)


In a medium bowl, mash together the avocados, lime juice, and salt. Mix in onion, cilantro, tomatoes, and garlic. Stir in cayenne pepper. Refrigerate 1 hour for best flavor, or serve immediately.


In other news, Luke and I officially have a place to live in the Des Moines area. We will be living in Grimes. We found a great duplex to rent that is very similar to what we have now. Luke only has 3 more weeks at GMAC and we are definitely looking forward to being able to live together again. We are able to move in starting June first. So we will be spending Memorial Day weekend, packing and moving. I am definitely not a fan of this in between living thing I am doing. Half of my things are at my parent's house and half of my things are in Waterloo. The end of the month cannot get here fast enough. :)