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Come Party With Me: Cinco De Mayo - Menu (Main)

Cinco de Mayo is this Saturday and I'm excitedly gearing up to celebrate in true style: with a huge barbeque for 300 of my sister's closest friends. I'm hosting this event for my sister and the lovely ladies of the UCSD chapter of Kappa Kappa Gamma. It's going to be a fabulous day-long fiesta that involves a charity soccer tournament and some delicious grilled Mexican food. Guests can munch on chips, guacamole, and salsa while they watch the games and wait for the main course. There are a lot of people coming, so food that can be prepped at least a day in advance is what will complete the menu. The invite displays a vibrant, colorful, Mexican fiesta theme that I hope to carry over into the menu. To see what delicious options (one meat and one veggie) I'll be masterfully grilling,

Beef
Fajitas

made from a cheaper cut of meat like flank steak can be topped with fresh peppers and onions. For the vegetarians in attendance, I'll grill up
Grilled Monterey Jack & Corn Quesadillas

. On the side? A huge batch of
Mexican Red Tomato Rice

that was designed to be prepared on an outdoor grill.


Fajitas
From Emeril Lagasse

1/4 cup fresh lime juice
1/4 cup tequila
4 cloves garlic, peeled and smashed
2 tablespoons roughly chopped cilantro leaves
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
1 teaspoon dried crushed Mexican oregano
1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground coriander
2 pounds flank steak, fat trimmed
2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon ground black pepper
6 large flour tortillas
1 red bell pepper, stemmed, seeded, and thinly sliced
1 green bell pepper, stemmed, seeded, and thinly sliced
1 yellow bell pepper, stemmed, seeded, and thinly sliced
1 large white onion, thinly sliced
1 tablespoon minced garlic
grated cheddar or pepper jack cheese, optional for garnish
Lime wedges, accompaniment
Cold Mexican beer, or tequila shots

  1. In a bowl, whisk together the lime juice, tequila, garlic, cilantro, 1 tablespoon of the oil, the Worcestershire sauce, oregano, pepper flakes, cumin and coriander. Pour into a large zip-lock bag, add the steak, and seal. Place in a baking dish and refrigerate for at least 12 and up to 24 hours, turning occasionally.
  2. Remove the meat from the bag and pat dry. Season on both sides with 1 teaspoon of the salt and 1/2 teaspoon of the pepper.
  3. Preheat the grill to high, and preheat the oven to 325 degrees F.
  4. Wrap the tortillas in foil and place in the oven for 15 minutes to warm and soften. Remove from the oven and keep warm in the aluminum foil.
  5. Cook the steak over the grill to preferred temperature, 3 to 4 minutes per side for medium rare. Remove from the heat and let rest for 10 minutes before slicing.
  6. Meanwhile, in a large skillet, heat the remaining oil over medium-high heat. Add the peppers and onions, and cook, stirring, until soft and slightly caramelized, 12 to 15 minutes. Add the garlic, remaining teaspoon salt, and 1/2 teaspoon pepper and cook, stirring, until the garlic is fragrant and soft, 1 to 2 minutes. Remove from the heat.
  7. Thinly slice the steak against the grain. Divide among the warmed tortillas and top with the vegetables and cheese if desired. Squeeze with lime juice and serve immediately with cold beer or tequila shots.

Serves 6.


Grilled Monterey Jack & Corn Quesadillas
From Gourmet magazine

4 oz Monterey Jack cheese, coarsely grated (about 1 1/2 cups)
1 cup frozen corn, thawed
2 tablespoons mayonnaise
2 scallions, thinly sliced crosswise
2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
1 tablespoon chopped canned chipotle chiles in adobo
4 (8-inch) flour tortillas
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
Special equipment: a well-seasoned ridged grill pan

  1. Stir together cheese, corn, mayonnaise, scallions, cilantro, and chiles in a small bowl.
  2. Lightly brush 1 tortilla with some of oil. Turn tortilla over and spread 1/2 cup filling over half, then fold other half over to form a half-moon. Assemble 3 more quesadillas in same manner.
  3. Heat lightly oiled grill pan over moderate heat until hot, then cook quesadillas, 2 at a time, turning over once, until cheese is melted, about 4 minutes total per batch. Transfer to a cutting board and cut in half.

Serves 2 to 4.


Mexican Red Tomato Rice
From Rick Bayless

1 (15-oz.) can whole tomatoes, drained
1/2 small white onion, roughly chopped
2 garlic cloves, halved
1-3/4 cups chicken broth or water
Salt
1-1/2 tablespoons olive oil
4 whole tomatoes, unpeeled
1-1/2 cups rice (medium-grain)
2 carrots, scraped, chopped into 1/4-inch pieces
3 serrano chilies or 2 jalapenos, slit lengthwise nearly end to end
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley

  1. In blender or food processor, combine canned tomatoes with onion and garlic. You may add tomato juices to the measure of chicken broth or water. Blend tomatoes smooth to equal a generous 1 cup.
  2. Heat broth or water until steaming; season with salt. Lightly oil tomatoes. Grill the tomatoes to char their skins. When cool, remove most of the peel and roughly chop; set aside.
  3. In a 3-quart saucepan, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add raw rice to hot oil and stir regularly during a cooking period of 5 minutes.
  4. If some rice kernels start to brown, that's fine. Add tomato mixture and carrots.
  5. Stir a couple times, then let cook until reduced and somewhat dry-looking, 3 minutes.
  6. Add the warm broth or water, the chilies and parsley; stir thoroughly and scrape down any rice kernels clinging to the side of the pan. Cover pan with lid and place on a range burner, or if pan is appropriate, place on cooking grate of charcoal or gas grill (indirect, medium heat).
  7. Cook for 15 minutes or until almost all liquid is absorbed. Add grilled tomatoes, stirring with a fork. Cover pan and cook 5 additional minutes.
  8. Gently fluff the rice with a fork when done. Remove the chilies or pull out and use to decorate the top of the rice, and serve.

Serves 6.

What will you be eating for Cinco de Mayo this weekend?

Around The Web
Join The Conversation
NadiaPotter NadiaPotter 8 years
Nadia Potter If I made something... it´s gonan be something easy that I like, TOSTADAS. Tostadas preparadas, with fried beans, white chesse, lettuce, tomato, cream and salsa (2 tomatoes, 2 jalapeños, you boil them and you liquefy with garlic and salt) and.. easy...
Hera119 Hera119 8 years
it looks like a Thai party..
crispet1 crispet1 9 years
Im hungry!
mandiesoh mandiesoh 9 years
ooo the Quesadillas and tomato rice looks awesome! my house help used to make tomato rice with ketchup! just prepare the rice the normal way, and add in loads of ketchup! as it cooks, it absorbs it. hehe. YUMMY.
jendudley jendudley 9 years
That recipe for fajitas is intense. Mine is much easier, but the taste might be a tad different. crock pot fajitas (beef skirts) 1 beer salt and pepper and whatever other seasonings you want in there sliced onions and bell peppers Throw it all in and leave until the fajitas are falling apart and the whole house smells of beefy goodness.
SU3 SU3 9 years
delicious grilled Mexican food is right! Great choices for the menu - sounds fantastic!
figurine figurine 9 years
*Mmm, Homer drool* I might try one of these recipes.
ktjones ktjones 9 years
I saw recipes for Mexican food all over and then I saw this posting and looked at the date...thanks for the Cinco de Mayo reminder!!
celebrity_soup celebrity_soup 9 years
i got it alllllll planned out! for cinco de mayo im making some home made tortillas along with this fajita recipe yummmmm :drool:
colormesticky colormesticky 9 years
Rick Bayless is a Genius (with a capital G), but a lot of his recipes end up being day long projects for me.
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