Ironically, all this talk about Mexico on the news has me craving Mexican food in a big way. So yesterday I decided to make chicken fajitas and fresh pico de gallo for dinner. Now, I know that there are plenty of fajita seasonings that you can buy at the grocery store, but let’s face it — they can be loaded with God-knows-what and it’s cheaper to make your own. Plus, I prefer to make a fajita marinade instead of just throwing the spices and some water in the frying pan with the chicken, onions, and peppers. The flavor really penetrates the chicken and the result (at least in my experience) has always been delicious. Here is the marinade I use:
Easy Fajita Marinade
1 c. vegetable oil
1 c. red wine vinegar
1 tsp. sugar
1 tsp. dried oregano
1 tsp. chili powder
1 tsp. garlic powder
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. pepper
Mix all ingredients together and use as a marinade for chicken, beef, or vegetables. Marinade for at least 1 hour.
What I like to do is slice my onions and peppers and put them in one bowl with about one cup of the marinate, and the put my sliced chicken in another bowl with the rest of the marinade. I usually do about 3 breast halves, but I think this marinade would easily cover 4 breast halves – use your own judgement on that. I prefer to marinade my chicken for about three hours. I would not recommend using this marinade overnight because the vinegar will “cook” the chicken. Then I just dump the veggies and the chicken into a frying pan with some of the marinade, cook it down, and then pour out the marinade to brown it all up.
I usually just eyeball my pico de gallo. Last night I used one tomato, one jalepeño (with the seeds because I like it spicy), a small chunk of onion, some cilantro, salt, and the juice of half a lime. It’s so much better than the jarred stuff, and ridiculously easy!
I think today I might put together a “fajita kit” for the freezer and slice up onions, peppers, boneless chicken and put them in a bag, and then in another snack-sized bag measure out all the spices for the marinade. That will be a big time-saver once the baby is here and make for an easy dinner!