These Chicken Fajitas have a terrific flavour hit from a great marinade. Served alongside charred peppers and onion, this meal is a kaleidoscope of colours no one can resist!
Whenever I see rainbow coloured capsicum on sale at the stores, I immediately think of Fajitas.
I know, I know, full points for (un)originality. Though to be fair, when I see just redcapsicum on sale, my first thought is the not so well known Spanish Romesco Sauce. The magic chargrilled capsicum-almond sauce that I use as a dip / sauce / marinade that I am abnormally addicted to.
So don’t crucify me for choosing the obvious when multi coloured capsicums are on sale!😂
FAJITA CHICKEN DESERVES A GREAT MARINADE
The secret ingredient in this marinade is orange juice. No, it doesn’t taste of oranges once cooked. When mixed with other savoury ingredients (lime, garlic, cumin, olive oil) then cooked, you end up with an incredibly flavourful chicken that’s savoury, fragrant and balanced with a hint of sweet.
Fruit juice is used in a wide range of marinades, from Cuban Mojo marinades to Mexican Pork Carnitas, to Korean Marinades to Hawaiian. It injects with subtle flavour and also the sugar brines like salt so proteins retain juiciness when cooked. Did you know that? There’s your cooking trivia for the day!
PS Don’t worry if you don’t have fresh or bottled OJ on hand. See recipe notes for alternatives.
A BIG HIT OF VEGGIES
One of the reasons I enjoy Fajitas so much is that you get a good serve of veggies without even realising. To serve 4 people, I like to use 3 large capsicums (that’s bell peppers to some of you) and a large onion.
This way, I can stuff the warm tortillas with tons of veggies, then top with a sensible serving of chicken. A slice of avocado, a quick drizzle of sour cream and you’ll be clutching an overstuffed tortilla of Fajita goodness, ready to be devoured.
Go forth and fulfil your Fajita cravings!!! – Nagi x
- 1/4 cup / 65 ml lime juice
- 1/4 cup / 65 ml orange juice (Note 1 for subs)
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 2 garlic cloves , minced
- 1 tsp cumin powder
- 1 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp black pepper
- 700g / 1.2 lb skinless chicken thighs or 2 large chicken breasts , halved horizontally (Note 2)
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 3 capsicums / bell peppers , deseeded and sliced (red, yellow or green)
- 1 large onion , halved and sliced thickly (brown, yellow, white or red)
- 8– 12 small tortillas
- 1 large avocado , halved and sliced
- Sour cream
- Fresh lime wedges
Place Marinade ingredients in a large bowl and mix. Add chicken, toss well to coat. Marinade for 1 hour to 24 hours (or freeze immediately then defrost overnight).
Use 2 skillets to cook the chicken and vegetables at the same time, if you can.
Heat 1 tbsp oil in a heavy based skillet over high heat until smoking. Add vegetables to cover the base of the pan in a single layer without too much overlapping (I cook in 3 batches). Spread out, leave for 45 seconds (to char it).
Toss quickly then spread out. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Leave 45 seconds, toss then spread out, then leave 45 seconds. Remove onto platter and repeat with remaining Vegetables.
Heat 1 tbsp oil in a large skillet over medium high heat. Add chicken and cook for 3 to 4 minutes until caramelised. Turn and cook the other side for 3 – 4 minutes.
Remove onto a plate, cover loosely with foil. Rest for 3 minutes then slice.
Warm tortillas using chosen method.
Pile peppers and onion onto tortilla. Top with chicken, drizzle with sour cream, squeeze over lime juice. Fold, devour and be happy.
1. Sub with pineapple, apple or mango juice. OR chicken broth + 1 tsp sugar. If you have none of these, leave it out, add 1/2 tsp each onion, garlic powder, coriander powder and paprika plus 1 tsp sugar - will compensate for loss of other flavour, though will taste a bit different.
2. If using chicken breast, use 2 large ones and cut them in half horizontally to form 2 thinner steaks (ie 4 steaks in total, 1 per person)
4. Nutrition per serving, assuming 2 flour tortilla tacos per person, 1 tsp sour cream (if it’s thick, thin it so it’s like Mexican crema), ¼ avocado. This assumes only ½ the oil in the marinade is absorbed by the chicken.
Originally published in April 2017 using a rather generic Mexican seasoning / marinade which I no longer use - original recipe here. It's unusual for me to republish a recipe so soon after the original publish date, but the marinade in this new recipe is so much better. It’s based on either a Rick Bayless or Bobby Flay recipe, I cannot recall.
WATCH HOW TO MAKE IT
Chicken Fajitas recipe video!
LIFE OF DOZER
You can hear the wheels turning in his head as he assesses the distance between him, the Fajitas and the door, versus me behind the camera.
Calculated risk assessment result: No go. Better chance of getting a treat for good behaviour.