In my house the meal times tend to be a little more irregular during the summer holidays. The structured routine during the school term allows for set dining times and, in turn, I find myself having a pot of stew, curry or soup always ready for the return of the school goers. As much as I love the continuity of the school day routine, I’m always ready to embrace the more relaxed mealtimes once July is upon us. Naturally I still like to serve dishes that are nutritious, as well as tasty, but time is generally the essence, so my summertime meals are ones that can be rustled up in a hurry. Like in many households, our old reliable barbecue is ever ready at the back door, throughout the summer months. Even though I still find myself predominantly cooking at my stove, that barbeque vibe of handheld meals is still prominent for my summer months. Burgers, fajitas and hot dogs, of sort, all work wonderfully well when you're trying to make the most of our Irish summer sun.
Chicken Fajitas with Caramelised Red Onion & Peppers
Summer or winter alike, fajitas are one of my all time favourite fast, family dishes. To enhance the flavour of the chicken I generally like to leave it marinating for a few hours, however if you're pushed for time you can cook the coated chicken straight away. Fried onions and peppers are a must for my fajitas, but simply adding a little balsamic vinegar and brown sugar, towards the end of cooking, transforms them into something very special.
½ lemon, juiced
1 tsp smoked paprika
1 tsp ground coriander
1 tsp ground cumin
A few twists of black pepper
1 tbsp olive oil
4 chicken fillets, sliced into strips
Caramelised Red Onion & Peppers
1 tbsp olive oil
1 red onion, cut into slices
1 red pepper, cut into thin strips
1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
1 tbsp soft brown sugar
Harissa Spiced Sour Cream Topping
150g sour cream
1 tsp harissa
Sprinkle of smoked paprika
4 large flour tortillas
- Combine the lemon juice, smoked paprika, ground coriander, ground cumin, black pepper and olive oil in a large bowl. Add the chicken strips and combine well, making sure that all the chicken is coated. Cover and place in the fridge to marinade for at least 4 hours.
- Place a large pan or wok over a medium heat. Add a tablespoon of olive oil. When hot add the onion and pepper and stir fry, until they are cooked through. Add the vinegar and brown sugar. Stir well and continue to cook for 2 minutes. Over a very low heat keep warm, until the chicken is ready to be served.
- Heat a large griddle pan. Dry fry the flour tortillas, one at a time, for a minute on each side. Remove to a warmed plate.
- Next, add the chicken strips and stirring regularly, fry the chicken until cooked through and nicely charred.
- To make the topping combine the sour cream together with the harissa and then sprinkle over a little smoked paprika.
- To serve, add some chicken, caramelised onions and peppers to each tortilla, along with some lettuce and a little grated cheese. Top with a dollop of the harissa spiced sour cream.