Monday, February 28, 2011

Mesquite Grilled Steak Fajitas

 I am not a huge red meat fan, but since this meal was for Tim, I went with steak fajitas.  This recipe uses skirt steak which is always a good start.  The marinade is delicious, and I plan to use it a lot in the future, especially once grilling season is here!  Just be sure to plan ahead as you are supposed to let the meat marinate for 6-8 hours. You can just mix it all up in the morning and by the time dinner time rolls around you will be ready to go.
Mesquite Grilled Steak Fajitas
**recipe from Chevy's Fresh Mex Cookbook

2 pounds skirt steak

Agua Negra Marinade
1 Cup soy sauce
2 Cups pineapple juice
2 tablespoons ground cumin
1 1/2 teaspoons minced garlic
1/4 cup fresh squeezed lime juice

Combine all marinade ingredients with a whisk in a mixing bowl.  Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 2 days.
Place the meat in a resealable container.  Pour marinade over the meat, and make sure the meat is evenly coated.  Marinate in the refrigerator for 6-8 hours.
Preheat grill.  Place the beef on the grill and leave undisturbed until grill marks form, then rotate meat 90 degrees to create a second set of marks.  After 2 to 3 minutes turn the beef to cook the other side.  Transfer to a work surface and slice. 
Serve with warm tortillas and normal fajita accompaniments.  We had red rice, salsa, beans, and tomalito

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Sweet Corn Tomalito

If you have ever been to Chevy's you know this is the best part of the meal.  It is the little clump of corn pudding served atop a corn husk.  It is so sweet and so good.  I always save it til the end and then savor every bite of it.  Now that I know how easy this stuff is to make, I will probably be making it a lot more often.  I also am thinking of working this into our Thanksgiving menu. 

Sweet Corn Tomalito
*Recipe from Chevy's Fresh Mex Cookbook

6 cups fresh corn kernels (can also use frozen-just thaw and drain)
3/4 Cup milk
1/4 Cup butter
1/2 Cup prepared masa for tamales (or use dried masa harina and follow liquid ratio on package)
2/3 Cup sugar
3/4 Cup cornmeal
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 Cup milk

Preheat oven to 250 degrees.  Blend 3 cups of corn and the milk in food processor until smooth.  Whip butter, masa, and sugar together in food processor for about 2 minutes.  Add all ingredients, including pureed corn and the remaining corn kernels, and mix well.  Pour mixture into a 9x13 pan and cover tightly with aluminum foil.  Set the 9x13 in a large roasting pan filled with 3/4 inch of cold water.  Bake for 1 1/2-2 hours, or until an instant read thermometer inserted in the mixture reads 175 degrees and mixture is set.  Serve hot.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Big Flavor Black Beans

I liked these beans, but thought that they could use a little more flavor.  I turned the leftovers into soup by thinning with a little water. I added more salt and another tablespoon of Chipotle puree and let it cook until heated through.  This was much more flavorful, I really liked it!  I served it with a little sour cream.  When tomatoes are in season you could also top it with fresh pico de gallo. 

Big Flavor Black Beans
*recipe from Chevy's Fresh Mex Cookbook

2 Cups dried black beans
3 quarts water
3/4 Cup yellow onion, diced
1 tablespoon chopped garlic
1 tablespoon ground cumin
2 teaspoons chili powder
1 teaspoon chipotle puree (I will add extra but adjust to your liking)  **see note below**
1/3 Cup ketchup
1 teaspoon dried oregano
2 teaspoons salt
 **for chipotle puree use a can of chipotle peppers in adobo sauce and puree in food processor. 

In a large stock pot soak the beans in the water overnight.
When you are ready to cook, add the remaining ingredients, except the salt, to your stock pot and bring to a boil.  Stir, reduce heat, and simmer for 1 1/2 to 2 hours-until beans are cooked to desired done-ness.  They should still have a bit of a bite to them, but be mostly tender.  When the beans are cooked through, add salt and cook for another minute or so.  Serve warm or cover and refrigerate for up to 3 days.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Chevy's Red Rice

For Valentine's Day I made our whole dinner from the Chevy's cookbook.  Tim loves Chevy's so he was very happy with the meal. Their recipes are fun to make, and allow me to use ingredients that I don't always think to use and that is always fun for me.  The next several posts will be recipes from that meal.  I want to start with the red rice because that is always my favorite.  Every time I have made it I have not been able to stop eating it!  It is so flavorful, and has just enough spice-and you can adjust this level to fit your tastes as well.  It is easy to make, but tastes like you slaved over the stove all day.  Try this next time you are serving Mexican food.

Red Rice
**Recipe from Chevy's Fresh Mex Cookbook
6 beefsteak or 8 plum tomatoes
1 Tablespoon chopped cilantro
2 Cups water
1 teaspoon chopped garlic
2 teaspoons chipotle puree  **see note at bottom**
2 teaspoons salt
1/3 Cup canola oil
2 Cups long grain white rice
1/2 Cup chopped yellow Onion

**For chipotle puree buy a can of chipotle peppers in adobo sauce and puree in food processor until smooth**

In a heavy skillet over medium-high heat char the tomatoes until the skin splits and they become aromatic.  Transfer to blender or food processor and puree.  Stir in cilantro and set aside.
In a large saucepan combine water, pureed tomatoes, garlic, chipotle puree, and salt.  Bring to a boil.  Heat the oil in another large saucepan or dutch oven over high heat until just before oil begins to smoke.  Add rice and stir to coat.  Saute until most of the grains are bright white or slightly brown 7-10 minutes.  Add the tomato mixture to the rice and simmer for 15 minutes.  Remove from heat, cover, and let stand 10-20 minutes until rice is cooked.  Fluff with fork and serve warm.