Mexican food is one of my favorite types of food. I need things to be spicy; I crave heat in my food. If it doesn’t have some heat, I don’t feel like it has any flavor. I’ve been having trouble finding spicy foods in New York, too. Not that there aren’t lots of places to find spicy foods, it’s just a little more difficult than it was in Arizona, where half of the meals you can order are very spicy. I wanted to make something a little different for dinner the other night that incorporated the kind of heat I’ve come to expect from my meals, and I thought, why not make some fajitas with sriracha (my favorite hot sauce)? Kramer was gone all day, and I knew he’d be hungry, so I’d have to serve something alongside the fajitas as well, but I also wanted it to have a a kick to it. I’ve been crazy about chipotle chilies in adobo sauce recently (as evidenced by this and this), and I had never had Mexican rice with those kinds of flavors before, plus I thought it would compliment the sriracha. I was right! The fajitas had a lovely, bright flavor to them, while still having a bit of sweet, tangy heat from the sriracha, which I’ve explained before in this post, and documented my love affair with in a number of recent posts (here, here, and here). The rice was smokey and perfectly cooked, and it wasn’t too spicy thanks to the red bell pepper, tomato, and a little squeeze of lime to finish it off. This, essentially, is my own little fusion twist on a classic Mexican meal that I’ve eaten and enjoyed many, many times back home in Phoenix. I hope that it excites your taste buds as much as it did mine!
Oh, and P.S. Here’s a photo of Kramer and I in the audience at Martha Stewart! My mom screen capped it for me since I don’t get the channel that it airs on. Look how happy we are, even through the blurriness!
Rinse your rice in a mesh sieve until the water runs clear, then shake off the excess water. Heat 2/3 cup of oil in a medium pot over medium heat, then add the rice. Cook, stirring often, until the rice is slightly translucent (about 8 minutes). When the rice is ready, add in the minced garlic and cook for another minute or two.
Cover the pot and place in a 325 degree F oven for 15 minutes. Take the rice out, stir (making sure that the bottom isn’t burning), and place back in the oven for another 15 to 20 minutes, until the majority of the liquid has been absorbed.
In a medium sized pot, heat a tablespoon of olive oil over medium heat. Add in the peppers and cook for a few minutes, until softened, then add in the chicken with the marinade and cook for 8 minutes or so, until the chicken is cooked through.
- 2 chicken breasts, sliced into thin strips
- juice of 1 lemon
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 2 teaspoons dried minced onion
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1½ tablespoons sriracha (or another garlic chili paste)
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 2 bell peppers (any color), sliced into thin strips
- 1 onion, sliced thinly
- 4-5 6 inch flour tortillas
- lime wedges (for garnish – I think that squeezing a little lime juice over the fajitas really brightens them up)
- ⅓ cup + 2 tablespoons olive oil (or vegetable/canola oil)
- 2 cups long grain white rice (like Jasmine rice), uncooked
- 5 cloves garlic, minced
- 14.5 ounces low-sodium diced tomatoes
- 1 red bell pepper, roughly chopped
- 1 onion, roughly chopped
- 1 tablespoon chili powder
- 3 chipotle chilies in adobo sauce
- 2 cups low-sodium vegetable broth
- salt, to taste
- lime wedges (optional – again, I like a bit of lime juice squeezed over the rice for some acidity)
- Combine the lemon, 1 tablespoon olive oil, minced onion, garlic, sriraca, salt, and pepper. Place the sliced chicken into a sealable plastic bag, then add in the marinade. Place in the fridge for at least 1 hour or as long as 24 hours.
- Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a medium pan and add in the sliced bell peppers and onion. Cook for 5 minutes over medium heat until slightly softened, then add in the chicken with the marinade. Cook for another 8 to 10 minutes, until the chicken is cooked through. Serve in the flour tortillas and squeeze some lime juice over the chicken. Makes 4-5 servings (enough for 2 hungry people).
- Preheat your oven to 325 degrees F. Place 2 cups of long grain rice into a mesh sieve and rinse with water until the water runs clear. Shake off the excess water. Heat the ⅓ cup + 2 tablespoons of olive oil in an oven-proof pot over medium heat and add in the rice. Cook until almost translucent, about 8 minutes. Add in the garlic and cook for another 2 minutes.
- In a food processor or blender, process the can of tomatoes with juices, chopped bell pepper, chopped onion, chili powder, and chipotle chilies in adobo sauce. When the rice and garlic are ready, add the processed mixture to the rice, stir, and add in the vegetable broth.
- Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, then cover and place in the oven for 15 minutes. After 15 minutes, bring it out and stir to make sure it isn’t burning on the bottom, then return to the oven for another 15 to 20 minutes, until most of the vegetable broth has been soaked up by the rice. Stir, taste for seasoning, and serve with the fajitas and a wedge of lime (if you like). Makes 6 servings.