Mar 30, 2011

Recipe for: Carne Asada Tacos

From the kitchen of: Tyler Florence from Food Network

Carne Asada Tacos

I love me some Tyler Florence. One of my favorite chefs, Tyler is not your average Food Network cook. He’s more contemporary with his bold flavors and is very knowledgeable on several cuisines such as American, Italian and Tex-Mex. Looking through my arsenal of cooking websites and blogs, I found a recipe for Tacos Carne Asada from Tyler. There are three main pieces to this recipe, but you can certainly assemble the mojo and pico de gallo ahead of time. The only thing really left to do when you’re ready to cook is grill the steak! How easy is that? Believe me, it’s not a complicated recipe. The prep work pretty much involves a lot of chopping and mixing. The ingredients are so fresh and citrusy. This recipe is a keeper.

flat iron steak (or flank or steak)
mojo, recipe follows
pico de dallo, recipe follows
olive oil for grilling
salt + pepper
1 package of corn tortillas (if corn isn’t your favorite, use flour)
shredded romaine lettuce
shredded Jack cheese
2 limes, cut into wedges

1. Make the mojo.
The mojo is the marinade for the flat iron steak. Using a mortar and pestle (or improvise like I did with a regular bowl and the back end of a ice cream scooper), mash together garlic, jalapeno, cilantro, salt and pepper into a paste. Transfer paste in a plastic container and add lime juice, orange juice, vinegar and oil. Shake well to combine.

Ingredients for the mojo:
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 jalapeno, minced
1 large handful of fresh cilantro leaves, chopped
1 teaspoon of salt + pepper
2 limes, juiced
1 orange, juiced
2 tablespoons of white vinegar
1/2 cup olive oil

2. Marinate the flat iron steak. The recipe calls for flank or skirt steak, but none were available at Kroger, so I got the flat iron steak, which ended up being really juicy and delicious! Place the steak in a rimmed dish and pouring almost all of the marinade on the flat steak. Save about 1/4 cup for serving. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 2 hours, more if impossible, but no more than 8 hours because it breaks up the fibers. I only marinated the steak for an hour, but I wish it was longer.

3. Make pico de gallo. In a mixing bowl, combine all the ingredients together. Mix thoroughly. Let it sit for at least 30 minutes to an hour for flavors to marry. This makes a lot, about 2 cups.

Ingredients for pico de gallo:
4 vine-ripe tomatoes, chopped
1/2 medium red onion, chopped
2 green onions, sliced
1 jalapeno, minced
1 handful fresh cilantro leaves, chopped
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 lime, juiced
1/4 olive oil
1 teaspoon of salt (taste to see if it would need more)

 4. Grill the steak. It’s still a little cold outside, so grilling the steak indoors is perfectly fine. I had a grill pan, which was perfect. Pre-heat the pan over medium-high. Add some olive oil to prevent sticking, about 2 tablespoons. Pull out steak from marinade and season with more salt and pepper. Once pan is nice and hot, place steak on the grill. Depending on thickness of steak, mine was fairly thick, it took about 10-12 minutes per side, turning once, to get the steak medium. If you use flank or skirt, it’s best when eaten medium-rare so it’ll take less time, about 7-9 minutes per side. Remove steak to a cutting board and let it rest for 5 minutes for juices to settle. Thinly slice steak across the grain on a diagonal.

5. Start assembling your taco! Place all your condiments in little serving bowls. Guests can help themselves to whatever topping they like. To make the tacos, be sure to warm your tortilla in the microwave for 10 seconds. Lay 2 thick slices of steak on each taco and sprinkle with all the toppings!

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  • love carne asada tacos! these photos make my mouth water. it’s only 8:30am and i’m craving these!

    i like to put a bit of cilantro in mine. but only a little, since it has such a big flavor.

    • Isabel

      Thanks, Jillian! Cilantro is a big flavor. There was cilantro in the mojo and pico de gallo, but it wasn’t overpowering at all especially if you only use a handful.

  • These taste good anytime of day! Take it from me, I eat lunch at 9:00 AM. YUUUUUM!

    • Isabel

      Only you, Jared. Only you. Haha :)

  • Isabel, I also love me some Tyler Florence! Jamie recently bought me a cookbook of his, “Dinner at My Place.” Don’t know if you have this one, but it’s fantastic.

    • Isabel

      Haha, you’re a fan too! Nice! I don’t have that cookbook yet, but I’ll definitely look into it. Actually my spending habit on cookbooks are put on hold since we’re also looking for a house. Good luck house hunting! You guys should totally be on House Hunters! I can see you, Jaime and your little dog on that show :)

  • I actually got to MEET Tyler Florence! I used to live in Charleston, SC (he has family there and visits frequently) and he sat at the table right next to me at Hominy Grill. Was awesome! I’m a huge fan as well so I was pretty excited :) He’s very nice!

    • Isabel

      Ah! So jealous! I bet he was nice being a Southern and all. You know, I’ve always wanted to visit Charleston. Maybe I can make a pit stop when we’re going to Savannah this summer :)

      • You should! I’ve been to every restaurant in the area so I can help you guys with recommendations if you want :)

  • i made these this weekend and they were deeeeeeeeeeelicious. and izzy, your friend kat is right. charleston is awesome. definitely make a pitstop there!

    • Isabel

      thanks, laila!! too funny you had a carne asada throwdown! haha. you’re the best!

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