Fajita Steak Nachos

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Ingredients:

1 lb flank steak
1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
4 t minced garlic
1/4 t ground black pepper
2 T olive oil
24-30 good sturdy corn taco chips
1 (15 oz) can frijoles
2 T picante sauce, hot or mild
1/2 cup pico de gallo, hot, medium or mild
1 cup Mexican blend shredded cheese
Shredded sharp cheddar cheese to taste
1/2 cup guacamole
Optional: sliced fresh or pickled jalapenos or other hot sauce

Spoon Mage™ Note:

Take two minutes to individually address each chip, covering each one with all the goodness. It really doesn’t take too long and truly, a well curated nacho is the best! Use two small spoons to add a dollop of frijoles to each chip. Easy peasy!

Do not buy “tenderized” flank steak. The terrific texture that gives proper steak mouth feel and satisfaction has been pounded right out of it. Flank steak is remarkably tasty. It is tough if it is not sliced correctly. It is easy to slice it right.

Before cooking the steak, take a good look at it. Do you see how the fibers run the entire length of the steak like so many great long straight lines? If you slice along with those lines so that the long fibers run the length of each piece, it will be very difficult to bite off and chew.

The key to tender flank steak is to slice so that the fibers are short and vertical. After grilling, use a serrated knife and make your slices across, not with, the long fibers. You will be slicing from the short side which happens to be the perfect length for fajitas! To make them right for nachos, just cut the length into bite sized pieces.

Make one test slice first and look. Do the fibers run up and down vertically? Perfect. Now slice up the entire thing. Flank steak will still have more of a chew to it than tenderloin, but that’s ok.

Do not buy “thin” chips. Look for a brand that claims their chips are great for nachos. Round chips are great as you can fit more on a pan. If you live in Texas, HEB makes a terrific round chip for nachos.

Stir up a little pico de gallo, or salsa fresca (fresh salsa) yourself. Make it as spicy or mild as you prefer – it’s easy and no canning skills are required.

If you cannot find the Mexican blend cheese, use shredded sharp cheddar.

Directions:

Place the un-sliced flank steak inside a lidded container or a zip lock bag. Combine the vinegar, garlic, black pepper, and olive oil. Pour the mixture over the flank steak, turn or massage the meat to make sure it is covered by the liquid, and marinade for two hours.

Then grill until the meat is medium or medium rare. Let the meat rest for five minutes.

Preheat the oven to 375°F.

Fill a non-stick sprayed baking sheet with as many taco chips as you can!

Combine the frijoles with the picante sauce in a small container and either microwave or warm on the stove. The frijoles do not need to be hot, just warmed so that the beans spread more easily.

Slice the grilled flank steak across the grain into strips about 1/4 inch thick. Cut each strip into pieces that are approximately 1 inch long. Make the piece big enough to be the star on top of the chip.

Use two small spoons and place a dollop of warmed frijoles on top of each chip.

Lightly press one piece of steak into each mound of frijoles.

Sprinkle each nacho with a little of the Mexican cheese. Use about half of it as you will add another layer of cheese!

Add a dollop of pico de gallo on top of each chip.

Sprinkle with the remaining cheese. If you like nachos super cheesy sprinkle on some grated sharp cheddar. More cheese is always good.

Slide the baking tray into the oven and bake for 4-5 minutes, or until the cheese is melted and bubbly. How long this will take depends upon how high you piled on the toppings! Keep an eye one them so they don’t burn.

Remove from the oven and set the sheet on a trivet along with a serving spatula, guacamole, fresh jalapenos, pickled jalapeno slices, and hot sauces.

Enjoy with friends and family.

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