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Grilled Steak Fajitas

Serves: Makes 4 Servings



  • 2 small jalapeño chiles, stemmed, seeded, and finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
  • ¼ cup freshly squeezed orange juice
  • 4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • 1 pound flank or skirt steak
  • 1 large yellow onion, peeled and cut into ½-inch rings
  • 1 large red or green bell pepper, seeded and cut into quarters
  • 1 large poblano pepper, seeded and cut into quarters
  • 1 bunch scallions, root end trimmed
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 8 (6-inch) flour tortillas or corn tortillas (recipe follows)
  • 1-½ cups cotija or queso fresco cheese
  • Salsa, for serving
  • Sour cream, for serving


  • 1½cups masa harina, more for dusting
  • ½teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 2 tablespoons fat such as melted lard, butter, or vegetable oil
  • 1 cup hot water, plus more as needed


For the filling: To prepare steak, place jalapeño, garlic, orange juice and 2 tablespoons olive oil in a medium mixing bowl and stir well to mix. Add steak and mix to coat. Cover and let steak marinate for 20 to 30 minutes.

With the remaining 2 tablespoons oil, brush a large grill pan and heat on high heat. Add the onion rings and grill until charred and softened. Next do the same with the bell pepper quarters, poblano quarters and scallions. Transfer cooked vegetables to a cutting board and tent with foil.

Brush the grill pan with oil and heat over high. Add the steak and sear on one side for 3-5 minutes until a good char is achieved, flip and grill on the other side. Cook until an instant read thermometer reads 140°F when inserted into the middle of the steak. Remove from pan and tent.

While steak is cooking, cut the onion rings in half and transfer to a large warm platter along with the grilled scallions, cut the bell pepper and poblano quarters into strips and transfer to the platter with the onions. Thinly slice the steak and arrange on the platter alongside the vegetables. Serve with toasted or warmed tortillas, salsa, cheese and sour cream.

For the tortillas: Place masa and salt in a bowl and thoroughly combine with the fat, mixing with fingers or a whisk. Slowly stream in the water while mixing with your hands or a wooden spoon until the dough comes together into a ball. Turn the dough onto a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth, about 1 minute. Divide the dough into 12, 1-ounce portions and form each into a smooth ball. Place masa balls on a baking sheet, cover with plastic, and rest for 30 minutes.

After the dough has rested, preheat a cast iron skillet over medium-high for 5 minutes, and then reduce heat to medium.

If the dough has dried slightly during resting, wet hands and roll each ball again to moisten. Place the dough between 2 sheets of plastic wrap and place directly in the center of the tortilla press. Press down firmly, then turn the tortilla 90 degrees and press again, repeating 1 to 2 more times or until the tortilla is evenly ⅛ inch thick.

If the raw tortilla cracks or breaks, don’t worry: just grab another piece of dough and start again. Holding the tortilla flat in your palm, carefully peel the plastic away and transfer it into the hot skillet. Cook the tortilla until brown spots appear on the bottom, about 1 minute. Flip with a thin metal spatula, and do the same on the other side. Transfer tortilla to a baking sheet and cover with a damp towel to trap in the heat and moisture. Reuse the plastic for your next tortilla; it will become more pliable with every pressing. Once you get the hang of it, transfer the pressed tortilla straight into the hot skillet and start pressing the next one while the first is cooking.

When ready to serve, reheat the tortillas, wrapped in foil, in a 350°F oven for 10 minutes. You can store the tortillas tightly wrapped in plastic in the refrigerator for up to 2 days.

Tested and perfected in the Sur la Table kitchen

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