Steak Tacos

July 27, 2012

I love Mexican food, but have a hard time finding good authentic Mexican food here in the northern extremes of New Jersey. So my choices are to either drive the 20 miles into the Bronx, or make it myself. Of course we all know Mexican food is not one of Chris Kimball’s strengths. His only recipe is for medium-rare flank steak instead of slow-cooked chuck. So I’m on my own, and have been playing with the recipe for a few months. So far, it’s only 3-to-3-1/2-stars. Better than most Northeastern restaurants, but still room for improvement. I will make updates as I improve the recipe, but after a few tries wanted to post this as a starting point.

I forgot to picture it with lime slices. But don’t forget them.


  1. Typically steak tacos would be shredded, but I’ve been making this for weekday so I’ve been trying for tender, but not necessarily shred-able.
  2. My kids love ground beef tacos, a la Taco bell, and I do make them sometimes for a quick weekday meal. But I am looking for a replacement for those days when I will also be eating dinner. (I usually don’t eat dinner during on weekday)
  3. And lastly I wanted to mention that my goal for this year is in jeopardy. This has been such a busy summer, most nights my chauffeuring duties do not end until 8 or 9pm. I will do my best to make up lost time once the school year begins, but I missed 2 recipes from the last issue. This time of year has always presented challenges; I noticed something similar in my ground beef taco post from almost exactly 1 year ago. But this is the first summer when my sons and I are officially on our own.

Rating: 3-1/2 stars.
Cost: $8.00
How much work? Low.
How big of a mess?  Small.
Start time: 3:30. Dinner time: 5:30

Chris Kimball doesn’t have a steak taco recipe. The descriptions of how I prepared them today are given below:

2 pounds Chuck steak, about 3/4″ thick.
2 teaspoons vegetable oil
1 small onion
1 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon coriander
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon cayenne
1/2 tablespoon chili powder (once I used a chili toasted and ground it up)
2 garlic cloves
3 cups chicken broth
1/4 cup chopped cilantro

  1. Separate steak along its natural fat lines, then cut up into 3/4″ cubes. Pat the cubes dry and season with 1/2 teaspoon table salt.
  2. Pre-heat 1 teaspoon vegetable oil in a Dutch oven until just smoking, then brown beef on all sides in two batches; about 8 minutes per batch. Set cooked beef aside on a large plate.
  3. Meanwhile dice onion and peel garlic cloves. Also begin to pre-heat the oven to 350-degree.
  4. Add 1 teaspoon vegetable oil to the now empty Dutch Oven and saute diced onion together with 1/2 teaspoon salt for 5 minutes, using the moisture of the onion to scrape up the fond from the bottom of the pan.
  5. After the onion has softened add the cumin, coriander, cayenne and chili powder for 2 minutes.
  6. Press garlic directly into Dutch oven and saute for 30 seconds.
  7. Add the meat back to Dutch oven, add the chicken broth and bring up to a simmer. Transfer to your 350-degree oven for 1-1/2 hours until meat is very tender.
  8. Mix in chopped cilantro.
  9. Serving with your choice of toppings: My favorite are: guacamole (or diced avocado), chopped tomatoes, grated cheese, shredded lettuce, sour cream, salsa and slices of lime.

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