Best fajitas in Corpus Christi
The best fajitas in Corpus Christi feature ultra-juicy, buttery meat — usually skirt steak — with a slightly sweet, savory flavor that includes traces of lime and chili from a perfectly blended marinade. Cooked properly, the best fajitas are as tender as they are tasty. Your quest is to find your favorites among the many offerings in local restaurants.
Whether using skirt, flank, hanger, flap, short rib or tri-tip cuts, beef fajitas are made or mangled in the marinade and on the grill. The fun part of finding the best fajitas in Corpus Christi is sampling the savory beef and seeking out marinade secrets.
While many chefs won’t share, everyone agrees the main ingredients are usually chilies, garlic, cumin, and black pepper. From there, things can get a little hazy. Secret ingredients we have discovered on our own personal quest were pineapple and papaya (which act as tenderizers), sugar (which aids in the browning), oil, acids such as lime juice, and salty liquids such as soy sauce.
When you’ve found your perfect fajita, try to get the chef to let you in on the secret so you can recreate it at home. Aside from the marinade ingredients, ask how long they let the beef steep.
Secrets we’ve discovered include the fact that since skirt steak is so thin, you don’t have to leave it long — it gets the job done quickly. Some will just do a quick dip before sitting the meat on the grill. But remember: Not everything in the marinade is for flavor. The lime juice and soy sauce are there to help break down the muscle protein and tougher connective tissue in the meat to tenderize it. As for the actual cooking, don’t put that skirt steak on until the grill is really, really hot! You want it nice and charred on the exterior BEFORE the interior overcooks. With all thin cuts of meat, searing has to happen in a flash.
Combine with fresh flour tortillas, crisp onions and bell peppers sliced and grilled in a skillet with a little oil and maybe even some leftover marinade. Favorite toppers include sour cream, guacamole, pica de gallo or salsa.
WHERE TO GO FOR THE BEST FAJITAS
Ah, to heck with cooking them. If you’re hungry now, head for one of these top fajita wranglers in Corpus Christi.
1. Señor Jaime’s, 4615 Everhart Road. Authentic Mexican dishes prepared from the owner’s own recipes, including the tender, juicy fajitas. Order with table side guacamole and a Perfect Patron Margarita, a house speciality.
2. Taqueria El Potro, 1401 Rodd Field Road. It’s No. 29 on the extensive Mexican menu: chicken or beef fajitas with shrimp. Includes cooked bell pepper, onions and tomatoes served with rice, beans and a salad.
3. Kiko’s Mexican Food Restaurant, 554 Everhart Road. For decades, this locally owned and operated Mexican restaurant has been serving family recipes with fresh ingredients.
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