Judi's Chicken Fajitas and Fiesta Menu
We entertain a lot and our friends love Mexican Food. Here is a very manageable feast to create for your friends and family. Chicken Fajitas with Green Chile Salsa, Spanish Rice, Pintos and Jalapenos, and Mexican Caesar Salad.
16 Boneless skinless chicken thighs (Many people prefer breast meat, but thighs will be juicy, flavorful and moist)
2 packages of Grillmates Baja Citrus Marinades, made according to package instructions using orange juice
Grated Pepperjack or Mexican shredded cheese
2 bunches cilantro, chopped
2 white onions, chopped
Green Chile Salsa (Recipe posted in My Cookbook - "Semi-Homemade Green Salsa")
La Tortilla Facoty homemade style Corn Tortillas
Guerrero Flour Tortillas (We like fajita size)
1 package each Rice-a-Roni Mexican and Spanish Rice.
2 cans Petite Diced tomatoes with green chiles or jalapenos
Fresh corn kernels (off 2 ears) or 1 cup frozen, defrosted.
Pintos and Jalapenos
1 can Black beans, drained and rinsed
2 cans Pinto beans with Jalapenos
Additional pickled jalapenos, to taste
Mexican Caesar Salad
1 large head of Romaine lettuce
Chopped ripe tomatoes
1 red or white onion, chopped
Shredded Pepperjack or Mexican Cheese
Red, yellow, orange mini-peppers, sliced in rings (about12)
1 can black beans, drained and rinsed well
1 avocado, chopped
Toasted Pepita Seeds (Can buy at Trader Joe's)
Fresh Gourmet Tortilla Strips
El Torito Cilantro Pepita Dressing
Optional: Sliced black olives and sour cream
One day ahead.... 1. Make Grillmates Marinade according to package instructions, using Orange Juice. 2. Put boneless, skinless chicken thighs in a large ziplock bag. 3. Pour marinade over the chicken. Refrigerate and marinate for up to 24 hours. Longer period of marinating will kick up the flavor. 4. Make Rice-A-Roni packages according to package instructions, using the Petite Diced tomatoes with green chiles. In last 3 minutes of cooking, add corn kernels. 5. Stir rice to incorporate the corn kernels. 6. In large foil pan, put the finished rice dish and sprinkle thoroughly with grated cheese. 7. Cover with aluminum foil and refrigerate. 8. Make the Green chile Salsa
Morning before party.... 1. Clean and slice mini peppers and put in bottom of large salad bowl. 2. Add drained and rinsed black bean. 3. Top with chopped onion and cilantro. 4. Clean and tear 1 head of Romaine. DO NOT add tomatoes, avocado, nuts, or tortilla chips at this time. 5. Refrigerate the "prepped" salad until 1 hour before serving. 6. Set the table or create a buffet table.
One hour before serving....
- In a large sauce pan, mix together the beans and jalapenos. Start heating on low
- Remove chicken from refrigerator.
- Put Spanish rice casserole in a preheated 325℉ (160℃) oven to heat.
- Chop tomatoes for the salad.
- Remove "prepped" salad from refrigerator.
- Add tomatoes, shredded cheese, and pepita seeds to the salad. Add black olive slices, if using.
- Heat barbecue to high. (You will reduce temperature)
- Cook chicken thighs on high for a few minutes then turn to medium to continue cooking. Discard the marinade.
- Barbecue thighs for approximately 20 minutes, until internal temperature reaches 160 degrees. Don't overcook!!!
- When thighs are finished, remove from heat and let sit for 10 minutes. After that, sliced into thick strips of about 1 inch wide. Put in foil pan and cover with foil to keep warm.
- Heat tortillas on a gas stove or in microwave using a tortilla warmer.
- On the buffet table, lay out the bowls of shredded cheese, chopped cilantro, chopped onion, and green chile salsa. Put heated tortillas next to these, as well as sour cream, if you are using.
- Put foil pans to Rice, chicken, and pan of bean on the serving table.
- Add the dressing to the salad and top with ½ package of the Tortilla Strips. Toss and add additional dressing as necessary. Use remaining ½ package for people to top their own salad with more strips. Put on buffet table.
- Pour yourself a cool, refreshing Skinny Margarita and enjoy your delicious Fiesta dinner and your friends!!