Tag Archives: Cilantro

Grilled Skirt Steak~Chile Cilantro Marinade

After that long and cold winter we had in New York, I made it my goal to grill every chance I could. I had no objections from my husband either. He’s the fire starter or just likes playing with fire, lol! Either way, it works for me! And one of our favorite meals to cook on the grill is carne asada for tacos. For today’s recipe I had a small skirt steak and pulled what I could find from the pantry for the marinade. Instead of adding more acid, such as vinegar, I really like using the brine from the pickled jalapeños. We eat them on a regular basis, so I have them on hand most all the time.  I also like adding a variety of fresh peppers when I have them. And of course, I am never out of cilantro. Once the steak marinates, it’s a quick sear for a few minutes on each side. I have said this before and often, invest in an inexpensive meat thermometer. It can make all the difference in a well cooked steak.  

 

Grilled  Skirt Steak in a Chile Cilantro Marinade

Grilled Skirt Steak~Chile Cilantro Marinade

Ingredients

Chile Cilantro Sauce/Marinade
1 cup jalapeno brine
1/2 cup cilantro
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 habanero
1 fresno
1 serrano or jalapeño
1 large roasted poblano pepper
Juice of 2 key limes
1 teaspoon cumin seeds, crushed
1/2 teaspoon pepper
4 tablespoons olive oil
salt to taste

You will also need
1 1/2 pounds skirt steak(2 steaks)
Olive oil

Chile Cilantro Marinade

Chile Cilantro MarinadeChile Cilantro Marinated Skirt SteakThis marinade was so delicious on it’s own. We literally ate most of the remaining sauce with chips!!

Directions

1. Add all of the ingredients for the marinade/sauce into the blender. Pulse to blend, taste for salt.

2. Pour 1 cup of marinade/sauce over the skirt steak and marinate for 24 hours. Reserve the remaining marinade/sauce.

3. Remove steaks from refrigerator 40 minutes before cooking time. Preheat outdoor charcoal grill to high. Brush grates on grill with oil right before adding the steaks. Grill steak for  3 to 4 minutes per side for medium/rare. Add 1 minute per side for a more well done steak.

4. Cover and let rest for 5 minutes before slicing against the grain.  Drizzle remaining marinade/sauce onto warm, sliced steak before serving. Yields 4 servings. Serve with rice, beans, gucamole, salsa and warm corn tortillas.

Grilled Skirt Steak

Grilled Skirt Steak

Because Tacos Happen More Than Just Tuesdays! #beingmexican

 

Crunchy Chicken Tenders with Cilantro Avocado Sauce

I love cilantro! I remember a few years back when I was teaching a cooking class and there were a few students who really disliked cilantro. To say the least, it was hard to remember not to add cilantro to the dishes, lol! But in the end, they still ate everything! Maybe I converted them, hahaha! Many people who dislike cilantro, describe the flavor as soapy?? I grew up enjoying fresh cilantro and I have never thought it tasted like soap, but that’s me…

For this Crunchy Chicken Tender recipe, I used boneless thighs. They are inexpensive, moist and  flavorful! I enjoy preparing different salsa’s, sauces and pesto variations using the basic ingredients listed. To make different variations, it’s just a matter of switching out this for that and you have a total different finish. For example, if I added a few chopped tomatillos and white onion instead of the olive oil and Parmesan, it would be a totally different and very Mexican salsa. Try both for variation, why not. And if you can’t get passed the cilantro flavor, you could use parsley instead.

Crunchy Chicken Tenders with Cilantro Avocado Sauce
Crunchy Chicken Tenders with Cilantro Avocado Sauce

For Cilantro Avocado Sauce 

1 small bunch of cilantro, washed with stems intact
2 serranos or jalapeños, roughly chopped
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1 large avocado, diced
Juice of 1 lime or lemon
1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup grated cotija or Parmesan cheese
1/2 teaspoon white pepper
Salt to taste (cheese is salty, so taste before adding more salt)

Crunchy Tenders
I love my wire rack for cooling as well as for draining fried foods

For Chicken
1 1/2 pounds boneless chicken thighs, sliced into tenders(16 to 20 tenders)
2 cups buttermilk
1/4 cup hot sauce
2 cups flour
1 teaspoon Salt
1 teaspoon Pepper
1 teaspoon Smoked paprika
1 teaspoon Garlic powder
1 teaspoon Onion powder
1/2 teaspoon Cayenne pepper
3 cups oil for frying (I used half olive oil and half grapeseed oil)

* also added 1 teaspoon poultry seasoning to the flour

Directions

1. Combine all of the ingredients for the cilantro avocado sauce into the blender. Blend on high until smooth, taste for salt. Pour into serving dish, cover and set aside.

2. In a large glass bowl, add the 2 cups of buttermilk and 1/4 cup of hot sauce. Add the sliced chicken and push down into milk. Cover and chill for 2 hours.

3. After chicken has marinated, take out of refrigerator 30 minutes before cooking. In a shallow bowl add the flour and all of the dry spices listed. Stir well to combine.

4. Preheat 3 cups of oil to medium heat for 8 to 10 minutes or until temperature has reached 360 degrees F. Drain the chicken into a colander and dredge through seasoned flour. Transfer to a lined baking sheet and let set until oil comes up to temperature.

5. Fry the coated chicken for about 3 to 4 minutes per side or until crispy and golden brown. Drain onto wire rack lined with baking sheet. Keep warm in low temperature oven. Yields  4  to 6 servings.

Enjoyed the crunchy tenders on a big salad
Enjoyed the crunchy tenders on a big salad

* Lettuce, sweet peppers, red onions, tomatoes, cilantro and avocado for a tasty salad.
Tips~ Never throw out the stems of the cilantro! That’s where most of that great cilantro flavor that we love is! The stems are great for when preparing sauces or marinades and you want a more concentrated flavor. Just make sure you wash them well.