Meg’s Cooking Corner

Monday, May 23, 2011

Chicken or Steak Fajitas

I'm too late for Cinco de Mayo, but this recipe from Our Best Bites is a winner anytime at our house. It's very easy to adapt to your preferences: make with chicken or carne asada steak (I usually do both), add some shrimp/seafood, or change up the vegetables.
This recipe is also shared at Blessed with Grace, Tuesdays at the Table,Made from Scratch and Hearth and Soul.

Chicken/Steak Fajitas

1 lb boneless skinless chicken breasts, chicken thighs or steak
2 bell peppers, (any color) stem and membranes removed and peppers sliced into strips
1 large onion, sliced into thin slices
(any other vegetables or meat/seafood as desired)

1/4 cup fresh lime juice
1/3 cup water
2 Tbsp vegetable oil
2 cloves garlic, pressed or finely minced
3 tsp vinegar
2 tsp soy sauce
1-2 tsp liquid smoke (find near bbq sauces)
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp chili powder, or chipotle chili powder
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
1/4 tsp ground black pepper
1/4 tsp onion powder

Place meat in ziplock bag or shallow dish. Place vegetables in another. In a medium bowl, combine all marinade ingredients and whisk well. Reserve 3-4 Tbsp of marinade for later use. With remaining marinade, add a splash to the vegetables (enough for a light coating) and the remaining to the meat. Marinate for 4-6 hours and up to overnight.

Preheat bbq grill, indoor grill pan, or large skilled. If you're using a grill, place everything on at the same time. If using a skillet, cook vegetables first until crisp tender. Cook chicken/steak for a few minutes on each side until cooked through. Slice meat. Toss with reserved marinade and serve meat and vegetables on large platter.

Serve with your favorites: flour/corn tortillas, black beans, rice, mango pico de gallo, salsa, guacamole or diced avocados, sour cream, shredded cheese.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Mango Pico de Gallo

This fresh mango pico de gallo is wonderful. It is great on fish tacos, fajitas and tacos, as a garnish on salads, or of course, paired with tortilla chips! If you prefer regular Pico de Gallo, just substitute tomatoes for the mangoes. Recipe from Our Best Bites.

Mango Pico de Gallo

1 cup small cubes of mango (about 1 medium to large mango)
1/2 - 1 large jalapeno pepper (I used 1/2 without seeds to make a nice mild-med heat, add more later if you want it hotter)
1/4 cup chopped cilantro
1/4 of a medium red onion, finely chopped
Juice of 1 lime
2 cloves garlic, minced
Kosher or sea salt to taste

Combine ingredients. Serve. Will keep for a day or so until the magoes get mushy.

Friday, May 6, 2011

Glazed Poppy Seed Bread

This quick poppy seed bread is rich and buttery and oh, so divine. I can't believe I haven't posted this recipe until now as I make it all the time. Perfect for that Mother's Day brunch, spring luncheon or for anytime as a snack/dessert. I usually make it in mini loaf pans so I can share some with friends. This recipe comes from Mel's Kitchen Cafe.

Glazed Poppy Seed Bread
(Makes 2 regular loaves, 5 mini loaves or lots of muffins)

3 eggs
1 cup vegetable oil
2 1/4 cups granulated sugar
3 cups flour
1 1/2 tsp salt
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 1/2 cups milk
1 1/2 tsp pure almond extract
1 1/2 tsp butter extract or 1 tbsp melted butter
1 1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
3 Tbsp poppy seeds

1/4 cup orange juice
3/4 cup granulated sugar
3/4 tsp pure vanilla extract
3/4 tsp pure almond extract
3/4 tsp butter extract or 1/2 Tbsp melted butter

Line the bottom of the loaf pans with waxed or parchment paper and then grease and flour the entire loaf pan well.

In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs and oil. In a medium-sized bowl, whisk together the sugar, flour, salt and baking powder. Add 1/3 of the dry ingredients to the egg/oil mixture and whisk to combine. Add 1/2 of the milk and stir together. Add another 1/3 of the dry ingredients and mix well. Add the last half of the milk and stir. Finally add the last 1/3 of the dry ingredients and mix. Add the extracts and poppy seeds and mix well.

Pour the batter into the prepared loaf pans, filling about 2/3 to 3/4 full. Bake at 350 degrees for approximately 60 minutes, checking often the last 10 minutes of baking to ensure the bread doesn't overbake. When completely baked, a toothpick inserted in the middle should pull out moist crumbs but not wet batter.

While the bread is baking, combine the glaze ingredients and mix well. Set aside.

Let the bread sit in the pan for five minutes. Run a thin-edged knife around the edges of the bread and carefully remove the bread from the pans onto a wire rack set atop a layer of paper towels. Brush the tops of the bread with the glaze while the bread is still warm. Continue brushing and/or gently pouring until all the glaze is on the bread. Cool completely before slicing.