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Humble skirt steak sizzles in fajitas

Aug. 22, 2013 @ 12:00 AM

For the last three summers, I have had fajitas on my cooking wish list.

It's not a particularly fancy dish to be constantly thinking about, wondering why I haven't indulged in this very easy, very satisfying meal. I have sat at many a table ordering this in restaurants, but usually I order the chicken version. Each time I order it I always think the same thing: Why don't I make this? It's a perfect meal for a bunch of boys because you can place the ingredients in an assembly line and let them go at it like hungry puppies.

As I write this, I suppose you can imagine how dull my mind has become. Yes, food does inhabit the corners of my psyche. The best outcome of this is a thoughtful, delicious meal. The worst outcome is I never rest until I make whatever plagues me.

Let's talk about skirt steak. Long in the shadows of the pricy filet mignon and rib eye, the humble skirt steak is no shrinking violet. It has never disappointed and your eating budget will graciously thank you for choosing a more cost effective selection of beef.

A long, flat muscle from the rib plate, skirt steak presents itself in a beautifully compact form without any excess fat or bones to deal with. It's quick to cook, and receives any marinade well. Grilled or pan fried this meat is best served medium, which is how I always prepare my steaks. You can even purchase it already marinated in super markets, which will transform your prep time into no time and dinner is served.

STEAK FAJITAS

1 12-ounce beer

1/2 cup canola oil

1 small onion, finely chopped

1/4 cup lime juice

5 cloves garlic, minced

2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce

1 tablespoon chili powder

1 teaspoon black pepper

1 teaspoon hot pepper sauce

1 teaspoon ground cumin

1/2 teaspoon salt

4 T. Texas Pete hot sauce

2 lbs. skirt steak

1 quart cherry tomatoes

3 hot peppers

1 juice of lime

1 bunch of cilantro

1 small red onion, chopped

1 clove garlic, chopped

1 tub of sour cream

1 cup cheddar cheese

1 avocado, sliced

1 package of soft tortillas

Combine the first 13 ingredients and allow meat to marinate for at least an hour.

In a food processor, we will make the pico de gallo sauce. Combine tomatoes, peppers, cilantro and red onion. Pulse for a rough chop. Squeeze in the lime juice. Add a little sugar if it's too tart.

Now grill the steak for 3 minutes on each side, covered.

Allow meat to rest. Slice the meat very thin against the grain of the muscle.

Arrange all your ingredients in bowls. And assemble.

Janet McCormick is the author of "10-Minute Meals" and owner of Let's Eat in Huntington. She lives in Lawrence County, Ohio. She can be reached at 304-654-2003 or www.10-minutemeals.com.

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