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6.10.2013

Surf 'n Turf Fajitas

How do you stay inspired to do the things that you do?


Is it your job that inspires you?  Your kids?  Pinterest?  Ellen?

I'm asking because when I feel my inspiration reserve dwindling, I find it helps to seek inspiration from the outside rather than from within.  I never fail to be inspired by the goodness and creativity people possess and how they translate those qualities into doing and being.


This past weekend a group of my girlfriends planned a lovely little baby shower for me, complete with presents, Italian food, and lots of advice.  There were pink flowers and cloth diapers to decorate, and the well-wishes and excitement for me were truly inspiring.  To these girls, it was a lovely afternoon spent catching up and celebrating the creation of new life.  For me, it was all that plus their thoughtfulness, kindness, and generosity that inspire me today to be a better person.

I mentioned we were decorating cloth diapers, right?  Me, the most uncreative non-artist known to man.  Thankfully, I was sitting next to Liam, the 5-year-old son of one of my girlfriends.

Me:  Liam, what do you think I should draw?
Liam:  You should probably draw a giraffe.  I think girls really like giraffes.
Me:  Hmm.  That's a great idea, but I don't think I know how to do that.  It might not come out very well.
Liam:  Ok, then just watch me!

Yeah.  Of course he can draw a giraffe.  He's five.  Aside from being inspired by his unbelievable sweetness, imagine if he also doubted his ability to make an idea come to life?  If he stopped himself before trying for fear of messing it up?  My baby girl wouldn't have a burp cloth with a cool giraffe on it!  Moral of the story: get inspired and just do it.  Just draw the dang giraffe. 

And quite often I'm inspired by my husband.  It's true.  The other day, while planning dinner menus for the week ahead, I sought his help coming up with recipe ideas.

Me:  Hey, about dinner this week, what do you feel like
Husband:  TACOS!  FAJITAS!
Me: you'd be in the mood for?


Why do I not ask him this question more often?  Why do I feel like planning dinner is a one-person job?  My husband is just DYING to provide inspiration.  He's also just dying for any excuse to pronounce fajita like fudge-ida.  Apparently that's hilarious any day but especially when you're on vacation in Mexico and the poor girl taking your order is named Margarita (who, predictably, gets called Marge-er-ida).  Sigh.  I hate to say it, but I'm also inspired by his silliness.


These surf 'n turf fajitas come your way thanks to his love of Mexican food and my being inspired to shake things up a bit with both steak and fish in my tortillas.  I let both the steak and fish hang out in a citrusy-cumin marinade, and then grilled them up alongside sliced peppers and onions.  After making a quick guacamole, the only thing left to do was put out a bunch of our favorite fajita fixings and go to town.  These were simple, quick, delicious, and totally inspiring on a mild, sunny, Sunday evening.

And by that I mean we were totally inspired to go out for ice cream.  When it hits, you go with it!



Surf 'n Turf Fajitas
A Type A Kitchen Original Recipe
Serves 4

Ingredients:
3 tbs extra virgin olive oil, divided
3 limes
3 tsp ground cumin, divided
2 tsp chili powder
4 cloves garlic
Salt/pepper
1/2 lb tilapia filets (or any firm white fish)
1/2 lb sirloin steak
1 red pepper, sliced
1 yellow pepper, sliced
1 green pepper, sliced
1/2 red onion, sliced
2 tsp oregano
2 ripe avocados
1 tsp garlic powder
Salsa
Shredded cheese
Romaine lettuce, chopped
Flour/corn tortillas

Preparation:
In a large zip-top bag (or two separate bags), combine 2 tbs of the oil, juice of 2 limes, 2 tsp of the cumin, chili powder, garlic, and salt/pepper.  Add the fish and steak, toss to coat, and marinate in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour and up to 5 hours. 



In another zip-top bag, combine the last tbs of oil, last tsp of cumin, oregano, and salt/pepper.  Add in the sliced peppers and onion, and toss to combine.  Set aside.


To make a light guacamole, combine the avocado, juice of the remaining lime, and garlic powder in a small bowl.  Stir well to mash the avocado and combine the lime and garlic until smooth.  Cover and set aside.



Preheat the grill or a grill pan to medium-high heat.  When hot, add the steak and sliced veggies to the grill.  Cook the steak until desired degree of doneness, about 6 minutes per side for medium.  Cook the veggies until soft and slightly charred.  When the veggies are almost done, add the fish filets and cook about 3 minutes per side, or until opaque.  Discard all marinades.  When the fish, steak, and veggies are done, remove from the grill and slice the fish and steak into 1/2-inch-thick strips.



To serve, top each tortilla with any combination of steak, fish, grilled vegetables, guacamole, and fun toppings like salsa, cheese, and lettuce as desired.


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