Saturday, April 14, 2012

Daring Cooks: create a recipe challenge

Blog-checking lines: Our April 2012 Daring Cooks hosts were David & Karen from Twenty-Fingered Cooking. They presented us with a very daring and unique challenge of forming our own recipes by using a set list of ingredients!
It was required that you use at least one ingredient from each of their three lists :
List 1: Parsnips, Eggplant (aubergine), Cauliflower
List 2: Balsamic Vinegar, Goat Cheese, Chipotle peppers
List 3: Maple Syrup, Instant Coffee, Bananas

Some of those just seemed wacky to me... but WOW! Have the Daring Cooks been creative!  I was a little bit more cautious.  I know, I know.  It wasn't very daring of me.  However, I did make sure not to follow any recipe.  I just relied on what I remembered about making a marinade... so that counts, doesn't it??

I ripped off the basics of the fajita and added roasted cauliflower and goat cheese.  But first I had to marinade my beef to get all the flavor I could out of it.  I was able to find chipotle peppers in adobe sauce but that wasn't what I wanted.  I couldn't find any dried chipotle peppers either.  That left me using a dried powder or trying to smoke my own jalapenos.  Sorry, I went with the dried powder.  Again, not very creative of me but Life has just been a bit chaotic lately and so I took the easiest route.
Beef Marinade
2 pounds round steak, sliced thin
1/4 cup fresh lime juice
1/4 cup maple syrup
1 tablespoon dried chipotle powder
5 cloves garlic, crushed
1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup water
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon cayenne powder

combine ingredients and let set for at least two hours.
When ready to cook, drain off marinade and quickly fry in a pan with a bit of oil.  I did my meat in two batches so that the meat would sear and not steam. The meat will cook quickly.
Roasted Vegetables
1 head cauliflower cut into florets
2 onions, sliced thin
3 peppers (I used red and yellow) sliced into strips
2 tablespoons olive oil

Line two cookie sheets with tin-foil and lightly spray with cooking spray.  Spread out vegetables onto trays and drizzle with olive oil; sprinkle with kosher salt.
Roast in oven at 425 degrees F., for about 25 minutes (vegetables should become nicely golden.

To assemble I just added the meat to my flour tortilla, scooped on some roasted vegetables and topped with a bit of goat cheese.

I admit, it was on the cautious side.  I will also admit that it was pretty tasty too!


  1. Cautious is sometimes a good thing in the kitchen. Great job on the challenge.

  2. Even if you were being cautious, I think your fajitas sound awesome! Great job!

  3. These look delicious - great job!

    1. just popped over to your blog... you did an amazing job!

  4. Love with you did with this month's challenge!

    1. thank you! you did an amazing job... fantastic blog you have!

  5. "so that counts, doesn't it??"

    Absolutely! I do love some good fajitas, especially when they have some less-common fajita ingredients. So glad they turned out well and that you had a good time!

    1. thanks David. What an amazing challenge it was this month!

  6. We have the opposite problem with chipotle peppers- finding ones in the adobe sauce is next to impossible, but we can find dried easily.}:P

    Your fajitas sound delicious!