Maybe a bit of history on the origins of carne asada will give you a lead
into the many, many ways there are to make and enjoy them. Taquitos, as they
are called in Mexico, are fresh corn tortillas into which something is put
along the equator and the tortilla rolled neatly, the opposite end from the
mouth gently curved up between two fingers to keep the juice from running
down your clothes. But even then you stoop over and munch bite by bite until
all gone. Most U.S. citizens learned about tacos from Taco Bell - the hard
crust tortilla. Those we call tostadas.
Now for the carne asada. It's normally beef, chicken is rarely used in tacos
throughout Mexico. Beef tacos came into being shortly after the conquest of
Mexico and the haciendas began to sprout across the land from Yucatan into
New Mexico, Arizona, California. Pre-conquest Americanos had access to pork
(from the domestication of the javelin), dog, turkey, rabbit, deer and the
The only beef the natives could get was the leftovers from the hacienda
families or butcher shops in towns and cities. But a magical ingredient -
the sap from slicing lightly into the outer skin of the papaya - tenderized
this tough flank steak type meat and by adding a bit of lemon gave it just
the zest needed for a great taco.
The chef will toss the meat one side to another until the meat is charred,
then will put it on a block of wood and chop it up and end up putting a
handful onto a fresh tortilla which then goes onto a paper or plate, or
banana leaf or??? and the eater of the taco will spoon on the amount of
green chile salsa, red salsa, guacamole or whatever is available. Sometimes
a sprig of cilantro, or just an avocado slice along with chile serrano
finely diced up.
And that's it. That's the kind of taco you see people eating at nearly every
corner taco stand throughout Mexico. But hardly ever seen in the U.S.
As a side dish there is usually a clay pot (cazuela) of soupy pinto beans
(frijoles de hoya).
Again, I beg to differ concerning Carne Asada. The words
literally mean "broiled meat" and throughout Mexico it is
cooked over an open fire. In Northern Mexico, carne asada is
usually made with a good tender cut of meat like tenderloin or
sirloin, which sets it apart from what we know as fajitas,
which are made with a cheap skirt steak. The most distinctive
thing about carne asada is the manner in which the meat is
cut. It is trimmed of all fat and then thinly slicked with
the grain. These steaks, because they are so thin, must be
broiled very quickly over the hottest possible coals to
achieve a rare or medium rare state. In Mexico, carne asada
is the centerpiece of the steak tampiquena combination plate
(one of the only combination plates traditionally found in
Mexico), which usually consists of the carne asada prepared
with thinly sliced tenderloin, a good enchilada, taco made
with shredded chicken or beef, refried beans, rice, guacamole,
rajas, salsa and sometimes a grilled square of white panela
I use tenderloin marinated in a combination of ground up
garlic, black peppercorns, a little cumin, olive oil and salt
(think I posted this recipe not too long ago, so check Deja
News). Marinate overnight for the best flavor. Broil very
quickly over very hot coals and serve as suggested above or
with tortillas, guacamole and a good hot pico de gallo.
Why must you 'beg to differ' and imply some kind of debate? Didn't we get
over this kind of stuff with Victor?
One reason I have chosen to focus more on my business and less time in this
newsgroup is because of this kind of bull.
Why couldn't you simply say.... "Gee, that's interesting... never thought
about back when the peons were learning to eat beef....But here's my take on
So are you now the resident expert?
Your rude, hateful response to a simple post of an opinion
different from your own is hardly worth a reply, but I
hesitate to leave this group without at least defending
My apologies for not phrasing my post in a manner suitable to
you. Perhaps you can write a section for the FAQ describing
in detail exactly how all posts should be written in order to
avoid any intelligent debate or difference of opinion. I'd
hate to see an innocent "newbie" get mowed down by you because
he or she didn't know your rules. In a very "Victor-like"
manner, you have put everyone on notice that debates and
opinions different than your own are forbidden in this
"discussion forum". I'm not playing by your rules.
And no, I'm not the "resident expert" and have never purported
to be. I've tried to contribute what I do know to this group
and post a few recipes, answer a few questions, and enjoy the
"opinions", recipes, and contributions of others.
Discussing such a simple subject as Mexican cooking should be
fun and interesting, not stressful or painful. You have taken
the fun out of this for me. So direct your flame
elsewhere....I'm outta here....
Good God people. What is the matter w/ you. A person asked a simple
question about a kind of taco that they liked to eat, and it turned into this
shit storm tirade. If you're so mad at the world, that you have to let a
newsgroup post, bring it all crashing down and force you to take it out on
innocent newsgroup members, then you need to take a break. Have you ever
seen "Falling Down"? Trust me... go have a time out.
As for the orignal post. I like Carne Asada too. Its good...and I've tried
for some time to replicate the flavor/marinade myself, w/ no luck. But, its
been fun trying. - Stubie's Web O' Rama http://www.flash.net/~stinsley
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Sorry to see you leave...
Wayne AKA Blackie!