Carne Asada Tacos & Citrus Salad
We love them, they love us, TACOS. It’s easier than you think to make world class carne asada tacos at home. Bonus points for the brightest tastiest avocado and citrus salad. Come on over, you’re living the good life!
Carne asada is a super flavorful steak dish with bold notes of chile and lime. It’s traditionally cooked on a grill, which isn’t always convenient if you don’t have a backyard or the weather isn’t cooperating. Worry not! This recipe is specifically written to prepare on your stovetop. The meat is pre-sliced so it marinates quickly and cooks in minutes! Using a cast iron skillet will help mimic the char you get from an outdoor grill. Drying the meat off with a paper towel before cooking will reduce splattering and help with browning. Leave the steak whole if using an outdoor grill. Don’t forget to kick up the final flavor by including fresh garnishes on your tacos.
Prep Time: 15 minutes plus 30 minutes marinating
Cook Time: 10 minutes
- 1.5 lb flank or skirt steak
- 1 tsp cumin seeds or ground cumin
- 1 tsp honey
- 1 tsp kosher salt
- ½ tsp freshly ground pepper
- ½ tsp chipotle or ancho chile powder
- ½ tsp garlic powder
- ½ tsp onion powder
- juice of 1 lime (2 tbsp) plus additional lime wedges for garnish
- 2 tbsp vegetable oil, divided
- 8 street style corn tortillas
- Mexican hot sauce for garnish
- 1 small white onion, diced for garnish
- 1 bunch cilantro, freshly chopped for garnish
- Place the meat on a parchment lined plate and freeze for 15 minutes.
- If using cumin seeds, add to a dry cast iron pan set over medium heat. Toast until fragrant, 2-3 minutes, stirring often to prevent burning. Pour onto a plate to cool. Once cooled, grind seeds into a powder using a mortar and pestle or spice grinder.
- Blend the cumin, honey, salt, pepper, chile powder, garlic powder, onion powder, lime juice and 1 tbsp vegetable oil in a medium bowl. Whisk until smooth.
- Remove the meat from the freezer and place on a cutting board. Using a sharp knife, thinly slice against the grain into strips. Place the meat into the marinade bowl and massage to coat.
- Cover and marinate for at least 30 minutes. Meat can be refrigerated and marinated for up to 2 hours.
- Heat a large cast-iron skillet over medium heat. Add the tortillas in a single layer and heat each side until lightly browned and warmed through, about 1 minute per side. Repeat until all tortillas are heated. Keep warm in a folded over kitchen towel. Wipe pan clean.
- Transfer meat from marinade onto a paper towel lined plate. Pat dry to remove excess marinade. Heat remaining oil in the cast-iron skillet over medium-high heat. Add half the meat to the pan and cook 1-2 minutes per side until golden brown and it reaches at least 145°F. Repeat with the remaining meat. Let rest 3 minutes before eating.
- Taste and season with salt and pepper, if necessary. Layer each tortilla with meat, a few dashes of hot sauce, a squeeze of lime and a sprinkling of onion and cilantro. Serve with citrus and avocado salad. Enjoy!
Citrus and Avocado Salad
This recipe is a perfect choice during peak citrus season that adds freshness to any meal. Using a mix of blood oranges and grapefruit adds a complex flavor that sets it apart from your usual weekday salad. A quick pickle of shallots not only creates a tangy garnish but also a flavored vinegar to use in our dressing. A sprinkling of toasted pepitas over the top adds a savory crunch with each bite. It all comes together in a harmony of flavors that compliment the beefy notes of carne asada.
Prep Time: 10 minutes
- ⅓ cup red wine vinegar
- kosher salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
- 1 small shallot, peeled and thinly sliced into rounds
- 3 blood oranges
- 1 large grapefruit
- 1 tsp dijon mustard
- 1 tsp honey
- ¼ tsp dried oregano
- ⅛ tsp ground cumin
- 3 tbsp olive oil
- 1 avocado
- 1 tbsp pepitas or hulled pumpkin seeds, toasted
- ¼ cup fresh cilantro leaves
- Heat the vinegar and a large pinch of salt in a small pot over medium heat just until simmering. Pour over the sliced shallots in a small heat proof bowl. Make sure the shallots are fully submerged. Set aside.
- Using a paring knife, cut off the top and bottom of each orange and grapefruit just to expose the flesh and create a flat surface. Stand each citrus on one of its flat ends. Starting at the top and cutting down in a curved motion, slice off the skin and white membrane, just exposing the flesh. Flip the peeled citrus on its side and slice ½ inch rounds. Carefully remove the seeds and transfer to a large platter in a decorative placement.
- In a small bowl, whisk together 1 tablespoon of the shallot vinegar with the mustard, honey, oregano and cumin. Whisk while slowly drizzling in the olive oil. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
- Halve the avocado. Remove the pit and scoop out each half from the skin with a large spoon onto a cutting board. Slice into ¼ inch slices. Nestle the slices in between the citrus rounds.
- Drizzle the dressing evenly over the citrus and avocado. Evenly place the pickled shallot slices over the top and then the toasted pepitas. Finish with the cilantro leaves. Enjoy!