Fajitas, a fast and fun answer to “what’s for dinner?” Adults and kids alike will enjoy assembling their own version of the perfect fajita. Figure on three per person—we each built two, with a third sans the tortilla, more like a small side salad.
For more color, choices and additional flavor, I added Trader Joe’s Autentica salsa and chopped Bibb lettuce as ingredients. And why not include a mix of bell peppers with the yellow, orange and/or green varieties? A lime wedge as garnish enables you to add an extra squirt of lime if desired.
While chicken breasts are fine cuts, and always popular, there are a few other cuts from the poultry aisle worth buying and exploring. The rich, dark meat of boneless, skinless chicken thighs stands up well to intense flavors like the cumin, red pepper, and lime in this quick and easy dish. Though I’m still mostly a white meat fan, boneless chicken thighs in particular have been gaining in popularity with me.
Cooking the peppers and onions in the same pan that you seared the chicken amps up the flavor of the veggies from the browned bits stuck to the skillet. And be sure to drizzle any juices from the resting thighs over the sliced meat for another boost of tastiness.
Chicken Fajitas with Red Pepper, Onion & Lime
- 1-1/2 tsp. chili powder
- 1-1/4 tsp. ground cumin
- Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 6 to 8 boneless, skinless chicken thighs (1-1/2 to 2 lb.), trimmed of excess fat
- 2 Tbs. canola, vegetable, or corn oil
- 1 very large or 2 medium yellow onions, quartered and thinly sliced crosswise (about 4 cups)
- 1 large red bell pepper, cored, seeded, and cut into strips about 1/4 inch wide and 2 inches long
- 3 medium cloves garlic, minced
- 1 Tbs. fresh lime juice
- 10-12, 6-inch corn tortillas
- 1-1/2 cups crumbled queso fresco or grated Monterey Jack cheese
- Salsa and chopped lettuce, optional
- Mix 1 tsp. of the chili powder, 1/2 tsp. of the cumin, 3/4 tsp. salt, and 1/2 tsp. pepper in a small bowl. Season the chicken on both sides with the spice rub.
- Heat 1 Tbs. of the oil in a 12-inch skillet over medium-high heat until hot. Cook the chicken without disturbing, except to flip, until both sides are browned and the chicken is firm to the touch, 3 to 4 minutes per side. If it browns too quickly, reduce the heat to medium. (You may have to brown in two batches so as not to crowd the pan.) Transfer the thighs to a cutting board and let them cool slightly.
- Meanwhile, heat the remaining 1 Tbs. oil in the skillet over medium-high heat. Add the onion, bell pepper, and 1/2 tsp. each salt and pepper and cook, stirring occasionally, just until the vegetables begin to soften, 3 to 4 minutes.
- Stir in the garlic and the remaining 3/4 tsp. cumin and 1/2 tsp. chili powder and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds.
- Stir in the lime juice. Transfer to a bowl, cover loosely with foil, and keep warm.
- Cut the thighs on the diagonal into thin slices, transfer to a plate, cover, and keep warm.
- Heat the tortillas according to package directions. Fill each one with a few slices of the chicken and some of the onion mixture and cheese. Fold the filled tortillas and serve.
from Fine Cooking