Mommy Does

What do you do with bright bell peppers, fresh onion, aromatic cilantro, and lean steak? Make fajitas of course! We are on a lifestyle change so I kept careful track of the calories in this one, and it makes a nice sized delicious dinner!

Step one: Cut 8 oz. steak down into strips. About one hour before beginning your stir fry juice one lime over these slices. Limes contain citric acid which breaks down meat fibers to make it much more tender when cooked.

Step two: Make fajita spice to toss the strips in. I used this one: Fajita Seasoning. I cut it down in third, and omitted the chicken bouillon cubes crumbled. This seasoning mix is PERFECTION!

Step three: Slice red and orange bell peppers in thin slices - about an 1/8 of each of two colors will equal two fajita servings. Did you know that it's a myth that color indicates how long a pepper has been on the plant? Each color of pepper has a distinctive level of sweetness and grows on it's own plant!

Step four: Slice a third of an onion into rings and then cut the rings in half to make long strips. Onions are powerful vegetables and used to be left out to soak up germs in the air long before air fresheners. It used to be considered the best remedy for sickness!

Step five: Mince cilantro up - about a quarter of a bunch should do it. 9 sprigs of cilantro only contain 5 calories and pack intense flavor. Not going to use the rest of the cilantro quick enough? Not a problem - pop the leftover into a freezer bag (after patting dry) and freeze it for up to 6 months!
Step six: Toss the lime soaked steak strips with the fajita mix. If you're wondering why it contains cornstarch you'll learn in just a bit. For now it's important to let the meat sit for 10 minutes. This allows for the meat to coat thoroughly.

Step seven: Get your oil hot. For two servings you will ONLY need 3 tbs. of oil. Use canola as it's more heart friendly then vegetable. If you really want to cut then heat water and use that as your base - although you'll want closer to 4 tbs. Water has a lower evaporation point then oil (oh yeah oil evaporates alright) so you use more water cause you'll loose more in the heating process. Oil is hot enough when a drop of water sizzles on contact. Please, please resist the urge to use more oil - this is enough and using more will result in oily fajitas - not delicious fajitas.

Step eight: Toss in your steak and enjoy the aroma! Stir constantly to get the oil mixed into the mix and fully brown all sides. Since this is strips this step takes 8-10 minutes. Overcooking results in rubbery meat. Don't worry if it's not done through - it continues to cook even after being removed from heat. The secret to tender meat is to trust your cooking time. You can always cook more - you can't undo overcooking.

Step nine: The last two minutes of cooking is when you toss in those colorful veggies. Cooking a veggie down drains their nutrients. You want your veggies heated through, but not wilted. Two-three minutes opens the veggies up enough to release flavor, but keeps them from becoming mush. Continue pushing your yummy fajita mess around.

Step ten: Allow the mixture to sit for a few minutes after removing from heat. Last minute thickening of the sauce will happen (remember the cornstarch? Well it mixed with the oil and created a nice glaze sauce that even coats your meat). Once it's sat and thickened, spoon into a tortilla or over a pile of rice, serve, and enjoy!

I did mention calories - for one serving you're looking at 570 calories (approximately) before rice or tortilla. It's so filling, packed with a delicious array of flavors, and ends the day on a perfect least it did here *winks*
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