Today is a very interesting National Day. We’ve got Mail Order Catalog Day and Pinot Noir Day. Then there’s National Ice Cream Pie Day and Fajita Day. You know me, if I must make a choice, it’s Fajitas all the way.
Besides, I’m not sure Mail Order Catalogs are really a part of our shopping experience these days. Like just about everything else in “print” we browse our Mail Order Catalogs on line. Although I still get catalogs around Christmas time. And I do enjoy flipping through the pages of Swiss Colony.
Now Pinot Noir is a lovely wine that goes well with just about any foods, with the exception of spicy Mexican Foods. For that only a salty margarita will do. And since we’ve already established that today is Fajita Day, Pinot Noir is out. So Fajitas it is.
Way back in the early 1930s, Mexican Vaqueros of Southwest Texas developed a recipe that has grown into a culinary destination dish. These cattle hands used throwaway cuts of beef sliced into long thin strips and cooked over an open fire or grill. Once cooked, the meat was served wrapped in tortillas.
As Fajitas moved from the rangelands to the cantinas, fresh Pico de Gallo, guacamole, grilled vegetables and southwestern spices elevated the dish and found a whole new audience. As their popularity grew, fajitas added a colorful flair to Tex-Mex menus from coast to coast. It wasn’t long before chicken, pork or even sweet shrimp were included in the filling choices. While my guys love it all, hands down steak fajitas are their favorite.
Sheet Pan Flank Steak Fajitas
2 teaspoons Mexican Chili Powder
1-1/2 teaspoon Cumin
1 teaspoon Garlic Powder
1/2 teaspoon Cayenne Pepper (optional)
1/2 teaspoon Salt
1/4 teaspoon Black Pepper
1 lb Flank Steak
1 Red Onion
1 Red Bell Pepper
1 Yellow Bell Pepper
2 large Jalapeno Peppers (optional)
1/4 cup Olive Oil
1 teaspoon Roasted Minced Garlic (from a jar)
8 Flour Tortillas
1 cup Sour Cream
1 cup Guacamole
Heat oven to 400-degrees. In a small bowl, combine chili powder, cumin, garlic powder, cayenne pepper, salt, pepper. Whisk seasonings to evenly mixed. Set aside.
Slice Flank Steak against the grain into 1/2 inch strips, set aside. Peel and thinly slice onion into strips no more than 1/4-inch thick. Set aside. Stem, core and slice bell peppers into thin strips no more than 1/4-inch thick. Set aside. Stem Jalapeno Peppers. Cut peppers in half, remove seeds. Slice peppers into thin strips the same size as the bell peppers, set aside.
In a large bowl, add steak, onions, bell peppers and jalapeno strips. Drizzle with olive oil. Sprinkle with minced garlic. Toss to coat well in oil and garlic. Sprinkle seasoning mix over everything. Toss again to coat well.
Line a large rimmed baking sheet with foil. Spread meat and vegetable mixture out on the prepared pan. If possible, keep in a single layer without overlapping.
Roast in the heated oven for about 10 minutes. While the fajita filling cooks, wrap tortillas in foil to have at the ready.
Place wrapped tortillas on top of the baking pan. Continue to cook for 5 minutes longer, until steaks are cooked through, vegetables are tender and tortillas are warm.
Slice lime into half-round wedges, tuck around the steak fajitas. Garnish with fresh cilantro. Serve with sour cream and guacamole to build fajitas as desired.
For a complete supper, serve with rice, beans and plenty of Margaritas.
Confession time – I almost blew off National Ice Cream Pie Day. That is until I realized we could make the perfect dessert for National Fajita Day – Fried Ice Cream Pie. Oh yeah!
Mexican Fried Ice Cream Pie
1-1/2 cup crushed Corn Flakes
1/4 cup Butter
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon Mexican Cinnamon
1 quart Vanilla Ice Cream
4 oz frozen Whipped Topping, thawed
Crush some corn flakes, then measure. Crush more until 1-1/2 cups is reached. Set aside.
In a large skillet, melt the butter on medium heat. When the butter is completely melted, stir in the crushed corn flakes, sugar, and cinnamon.
Keep skillet over medium heat, stirring and shaking continuously until cornflakes begin to brown, about 4 or 5 minutes. As soon as color is seen, immediately remove skillet from heat.
While the corn flake mixture cools place the ice cream and whipped topping into a mixing bowl. Once the ice cream has softened, stir mixture together until fully combined.
Press 2/3 of the corn flake mixture into the bottom of a pie plate or tart pan. The crust need not be “perfect”, this is a rustic looking pie.
Spoon the softened ice cream-whipped topping mixture over the bottom crust. Smooth out the top with the back of a spoon.
Sprinkle the remaining corn flakes on top, cover with foil, and freeze for at least 6 hours or overnight
When ready to serve, take frozen pie from the freezer and slice. Place slices on dessert plates, dollop with whipped cream, garnish with cherries and drizzled with chocolate syrup. Enjoy!