Discussion in 'Beef' started by robh1920, Mar 4, 2010.

  1. robh1920

    robh1920 Newbie

    Brand new at this and wanted to try some fajita meat. This meat is pre seasoned at a local meat market and already tenderized. About 1 inch or less thick. Any thoughts on how long it should smoke. Also should I throw it in a pan with the veggies and onions while smoking
  2. meatball

    meatball Smoking Fanatic OTBS Member

    I like to give my fajita meat (same thickness) an hour in the smoker, then finish it with a quick sear on a very hot grill, just putting some crust on each side but not overcooking the meat (I'm assuming you're talking about beef?). I don't usually put it in a pan with the veggies, just smoke it on its own and do my veggies inside on the stovetop, but not a bad idea for an experiment. If it's something other than beef, you should probably cook it to the correct internal temp.
  3. ecto1

    ecto1 Master of the Pit Group Lead OTBS Member

    Next time get them unseasoned and marinate them over night in italina dressing. I have been doing them like that for years and people love them also if you learn how to slice them no need to get them tenderized they will fall apart in your mouth. The secret is to cut across the grain.
  4. robh1920

    robh1920 Newbie

    Thanks. This meat comes from a small Mexican meat market and his seasonings are great that's why I'm using it. As I get better I will try to season my own. The dressing sounds good. May try that.
  5. ecodork

    ecodork Fire Starter

    You talking actual skirt steak or something like sirloin or flank steak cut into strips?

    I'm all for experimenting and letting us know how it goes, but I don't think skirt would do too well in the smoker. At least it won't be prepared in what I consider the traditional fashion. To me it just seems like overkill for something that is so easy and fast to cook in the traditional way. And if cooked over a good and hot mesquite grill, it'll be nice and smokey and juicy.

    I was born and raised in deep South Texas--arguably a primary source of what we consider fajita in america given the border influence. True fajita being beef skirt steak. Before it became popular it was considered a tough, trash cut of meat; only eaten by po'folk, ranch-hands, and such. People ate it b/c it was dirt cheap. Kinda like brisket way back when, if you think about it. When I go back home I still seek out and enjoy some well prepared "cuts" (organs) like lengua (tongue), molleja (thyroid), tripas (intestines), and goat. When done right this stuff is awesome! Just don't tell my gringo wife what it is [​IMG].

    All that being said, I think the best way to do fajitas is on a HOT mesquite-fired grill. They're thin so they don't need that much cooking time; maybe 5 - 8 minutes per side depending. In true SoTex fashion, I nearly always grill up some green onions that have been marinated in regular old cheap italian dressing. Just wash, trim the roots and some of the green. I like to keep lots of green on mine. For reference on cooking time, I usually throw the green onions on first as they take longer than the meat. Sprinkle with a little salt if desired and serve with good lime.

    As ECTO1 said, a bath of a few hours to overnight in italian dressing is one of the best marinades for the fajita too. If you get them untrimmed and unseasoned you'll want to trim some of the fat off that one side.

    Personally I like to keep serving simple and what some may call "Rio Grande Valley-style". Just some meat (cut against the grain, of course) in a tortilla that's been heated [on the comal (cast iron skillet) or a grill] topped with fresh lime juice and some finely chopped raw onion and cilantro if you got'em. Green onion and a pickled jalapeno on the side. Beans either refried or charro help it all go down. Man, now I'm getting all homesick (and hungry)! [​IMG]

    Again, that's just what I grew up on and what I personally consider properly prepared fajita. Go with your gut and let us know how it goes. Might stumble on something good! Whatever you do, watch out for over-drying the meat as dry, tough, and overly salted fajita is a major bummer.
  6. ecodork

    ecodork Fire Starter

    Ah, seeing that you got it from the mexican market and given that you're in North Texas (I'll forgive you [​IMG]), you probably have "the good stuff".

    Either way, let us know how it comes out! [​IMG]
  7. ecodork

    ecodork Fire Starter

    one more thing...
    Surprisingly, HEB's pre-marinated beef (and chicken) fajita is good too. Down home they also carry freshly made flour tortillas and the pre-prepared masa for corn tortillas. Just flatten out and grill on the comal. Man, it don't get much better than that!
  8. richoso1

    richoso1 Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Usually fajita meat is grilled, it doesn't take long to cook.
  9. mgwerks

    mgwerks Smoking Fanatic

    ECOdork, that's exactly how I do them too - I have a South Texas stomach. Now you made me hungry too!

    I will admit that the pre-seasoned stuff at HEB is tasty, but I've never seen it made of skirt steak. Skirt is really a required part of the dish IMHO - you can season and use other cuts like flank or even chuck, but there's something about the particular flavor profile and mouth-feel of skirt steak that can't be matched any other way.
  10. meatball

    meatball Smoking Fanatic OTBS Member

  11. ecto1

    ecto1 Master of the Pit Group Lead OTBS Member

    The new stuff from HEB is Skirt Steak. I too grew up in deep South Texas for the longest time I thought Fajitas were BBQ.
  12. triplebq

    triplebq Smoking Fanatic

    If it's red and from AAA La - Azteca ..around 1.5 tops and you are good to go . Shorter if your smoker will get above 250 ! They are great cooked on smoker . A DFW tradidtion . Smoked fajitas ! Be sure to rub a cut in half onion on your smoker grates before adding the meat .
  13. ecodork

    ecodork Fire Starter

    Well dang, those look great! I'll have to give'em a try in the smoker! [​IMG]

    mgwerks, I very well could be totally wrong, but I don't think the HEB ones down in Laredo are non-skirt. I'd think the HEB exec's would be kicked out on the highway past the border patrol station if they tried slinging anything but skirt as "beef fajita" in Laredo [​IMG]. Heck, even Outback steakhouse went out of business down there! Laredoans know what they like...
  14. mballi3011

    mballi3011 Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Now I too like to use flank or skirt steak for fajitas and then I just throw them on the regular grill.
  15. captsly

    captsly StickBurners

    Isn't flank and skirt pretty much the same cut of meat. I know up north its called flank, and here in Texas is is skirt... Either way I am a fan of both HEB preseasoned, or my own in italian dressing with some extra lime, garlic, and cilantro.
    I do my fajitas on the old smokie hot and fast with charcoal and a handful of whatever chips or pellets I have handy.
  16. mgwerks

    mgwerks Smoking Fanatic

    Actually, they are distinct cuts from different though adjacent parts of the beef. The skirt steak is found at the short plate, right under the ribs and behind the brisket. The flank steak is aft of that, kind of beneath the short loin, It is less fatty, more dense, and in general thicker than skirt steak.

    What's important, they are all tasty!
  17. captsly

    captsly StickBurners

    I appreciate the clarification. I do remember the flank steak being thicker so this makes sense.

Share This Page