With our Fall temperatures hitting the low 60’s I was looking for something fresh, flavorful, and belly-warming for dinner; something that really hit the taste buds. The one thing that kept coming to mind was that sizzling hot plate you get at a Mexican restaurant.
Now I have had a lot of fajitas in my time, which is rather odd because I am not a big fan of bell peppers. Even if you don’t like to eat the peppers, I encourage everyone to have them at least once in their life. There is nothing like the blend of flavors you get in a good plate of fajitas.
Most of the ingredients are often kept on hand as well. You can add all the color you want or if you only have green bell peppers and aren’t looking to make a trip to the store, that’ll be just fine. My love is not just for the taste however, it’s also about the way the colors pop! All the different bell pepper colors are just so pretty. So, for our family, a trip to the grocery store for four different colored bell peppers is totally worth it.
Prepping your veggies is also fun. You don’t have to worry about chopping small pieces. Start by slicing ½ a yellow onion into strips. Next cut off both ends of each bell pepper, cut the middle portion in half and julienne them all. For the garlic, I like to use my Ninja Mini Chopper for the perfect sized garlic chunks.
Quarter your Roma tomatoes, unless you have picky eaters like me, then you can dice them up so they end up hidden completely. The tomatoes mostly dissolve into a butter sauce, but when quartered they can leave a few big chunks. I enjoy this but heaven forbid my son sees tomatoes in his food! I, on the other hand, love the tomato-butter sauce they create, so I have become a master tomato hider!
*I am going to take a quick pause a say STOP! Don’t throw those scraps away! Those scraps can be used in many ways and there is something that each of you can find useful. We split our fruit & vegetable scraps up to 4 ways, depending on who can have them and where they are needed. 1) Our bearded dragon, Spike, enjoys certain veggies like bell peppers. 2) Our pig, Kevin, eats a serving of vegetables daily so most scraps are helpful to his meal. 3) We constantly add to a compost bin to replenish our garden in a natural way. 4) Some vegetable scraps are awesome for making stock (if you bought your chicken breasts on bones these can be used to make flavorful chicken stock) So many ways to be frugal and utilize just about every bit of scrap from this meal!
Okay, back to the meal. Doesn’t that ^^^ look festive!
I even managed to prep the chicken by slicing each breast into about ¼ inch thick pieces. For this recipe I used a big pot so that all the ingredients fit without spilling, plus this feeds our family of 6 for 2 days (major mom win). So we skip that sizzling ending sometimes, but I promise it does not take away from the flavor!
Start by adding in your butter and tomatoes to your hot pot. Keep your pot on a medium heat. You want to stir these occasionally for five minutes. Once heated, the tomatoes and butter will combine to make a delicious sauce (I actually make this simple sauce for many recipes). Then add in your garlic and stir a few times in a two-minute period. At this point you want to turn up that heat to high and get your pot really hot because once all of that chicken goes in it is going to alter the temperature of your pot.
Now add your chicken and cook on high for three minutes. You want to stir about every minute so that the chicken is constantly rotating to keep the heat even and so that yummy tomato-butter sauce coats each piece of chicken. Next add that plate of colorful peppers and onions and slightly turn down your heat to about medium/ high. At this point you want to cover the pot to create some juice and cook for four minutes, stirring once in the middle.
Lastly, add your seasonings and squeeze in the oranges & limes. Stir really well and slightly cover the pot. This will keep some juice in there but not create a soup. Cook for six to eight minutes. Serve over rice (and don’t forget to scoop some of that juice over top for added flavor!) or with tortillas and a side of lime. Top this with some sliced avocados & chopped cilantro. I hope you enjoy these as much as I do!
*If you have the time and want to fancy this up, place the fajitas & some of the juice into a cast iron skillet & broil for a few minutes to get a beautiful golden-brown color. I do this for reheating or when we have company.
- 4 Boneless-skinless chicken breasts- sliced
- 1/2 yellow onion
- 1 yellow bell pepper- julienned
- 1 orange bell pepper- julienned
- 1 red bell pepper- julienned
- 1 green bell pepper- julienned
- 4 roma tomatoes- quartered
- 6 garlic cloves- chopped
- 2 oranges- juiced
- 2 limes- juiced
- 2 Tbsp butter
- 1 Tbsp salt
- 1/2 Tbsp pepper
- 1/2 Tbsp cumin
- 1 tsp paprika
- 1 tsp chili powder
- Add butter & tomatoes to medium-hot pot. Cook for 5 minutes, stir occasionally.
- Add garlic & cook for 2 more minutes.
- On high heat, add chicken and cook for 3 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Turn down to Medium/ high heat
- Add vegetables, cover, cook for 4 minutes.
- Add seasonings and juice of oranges & limes, stir well. Cook for 6-8 minutes.
- Serve over rice or with tortillas, top with avocado & cilantro