So much has happened between the time I made this recipe and today. A lovely whirlwind of activities and events that I still cannot wrap my head around. I made this recipe ahead of time so I don’t have to worry about it this weekend… and my apologies for the late post. But here it is!
These steak fajitas remind me so much of the Filipino style escabeche that my mom makes during fiestas and birthday parties. It’s basically a whole fish, seasoned with salt and pepper, then deep fried in hot oil. And then, a sauté of garlic, ginger, onions, and bell peppers, with vinegar, water, and sugar is poured on top.
Although the ingredients for Bittman’s fajitas and the Filipino style escabeche are not quite the same, the flavors are somehow related. These fajitas are not seasoned with the regular fajita seasonings (cumin-cayenne-paprika-chili powder combination), in fact none of these are in the recipe! All the basic fajita fixings are present: garlic, onion, bell peppers, jalapeno, and carrots. In addition to these are two special ingredients that made it extremely delightful: crunchy jicama and fresh pineapple chunks in a tequila-lime sauce.
A delicious sweet and sour dish complete with meat, vegetables, and a fruit! Every bite is full of crunchy and juicy caramelized vegetable-pineapple bites with tender steak pieces plus a nice limey bite. This tropical inspired dish will take you to a different place… white sand, blue skies, cool ocean breeze, and warm waters!
These steak fajitas may be served with rice, corn tortillas, or both with a side of guacamole and salsa. Delicious from the moment they are scooped right off the skillet and even more so after a day or two!
Mark Bittman, The Food Matters Cookbook
Makes: 4 servings Time: 40 minutes
3 tablespoons vegetable oil8 to 12 ounces beef skirt, rib-eye, tenderloin, or sirloin steak, thinly sliced
Salt and black pepper
1 large onion, halved and thinly sliced
2 red or green bell peppers, cut into strips
1 or 2 fresh hot chiles (like jalapeno or Thai), seeded and minced
1 tablespoon minced garlic
8 ounces jicama, peeled and cut into sticks
2 large carrots, cut into sticks
1 cup cubed fresh pineapple (I used 2 heaping cups)
¼ cup lime juice
½ cup tequila or water, or a combination (I used tequila)
Chopped fresh cilantro, for garnish
Warm corn or whole wheat tortillas, for serving, optional
1. Put a large skillet over high heat until it smokes, 3 to 4 minutes. Add 1 tablespoon of the oil and, a few seconds later, the steak. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and stir immediately. Cook, stirring every 20 seconds or so, until it loses color, just a minute or 2. Transfer to a plate.
3. Raise the heat to high again and add the remaining 1 tablespoon oil, the jicama, and carrots. Stir immediately, then cook, stirring every 30 seconds or so, until the vegetables soften and begin to char slightly, 3-5 minutes. Transfer everything to the plate with the steak.
P.S. Head over to the FMP website to see delicious versions of this recipe made by the other members! Have a great week friends!