Wednesday, 6 February 2013

Mexican wave...

Do you love Mexican food?  I simply adore it...or at least the stuff that is served over here under that name.  Unfortunately, I have never been to Mexico but I imagine that it would be an amazing trip with lots of brilliant foods to try in different regions of the country.  Whenever I watch a cookery programme and it features Mexican food, I am sure I can taste it just watching it, so one day we are going to have to visit!  And until that dream trip becomes reality, I am just going to have to cook my own take on Mexican food.

I promised you another recipe and here it is: a fajita bake...corn tortillas stuffed with vegetables and chicken in a spicy sauce (or not so spicy, depending on how you like it) with a crunchy does that sound?  Some guacamole (or my version of it) on the side and cooling yoghurt (or sour cream) on top, this makes a great meal for during the week or would also work as an informal dinner for friends. And if you need to turn it vegetarian. it couldn't be easier!

Please click below to find out how to make this - I hope I have whet your appetite...

Fajita Bake (serves 2)

1 tbsp oil
4 corn tortillas (these work best but wheat ones are also fine)
2 chicken breasts, cut into strips (or see below for a vegetarian option)
1 bell pepper, sliced
150g frozen spinach
a little water
1 onion, sliced
1 clove of garlic, crushed
1 packet of ready-made dry fajita seasoning (= 30g) or homemade seasoning (recipe below)
50g tomatoes, cubed (either cherry or large tomatoes)
25-50g grated cheese (depends on how cheesy you want the topping to be)
a large handful of tortilla chips, crushed
2 – 3 spring onions, sliced
a small handful of fresh coriander (chilantro)

Vegetarian option:  omit the chicken, add more vegetables and cook the recipe as above; then prior to wrapping the tortillas, add a finger-sized strip of feta or halloumi cheese.

For the guacamole a la Happy Larder:
1 avocado, ripe & mashed
a little lemon juice (to stop the avocado from discolouring)
1 clove of garlic
salt, pepper

Simply mash up the avocado, add the lemon juice & crushed garlic and season to taste.

Method for the Fajita Bake:
  1. Preheat the oven to 180C (fan oven).
  2. In a pan, heat 1 tbsp of oil and add the chicken breast strips, pepper strips, onion and garlic.
  3. Add the seasoning and fry for 2 - 3 minutes.  You can add a little water if the mixture is too dry and sticks to the pan.
  4. Reduce the heat and add the frozen spinach - cook for a further 8 - 10 minutes or until the chicken and spinach are fully cooked.
  5. Remove the pan from the heat and allow the mixture to cool slightly.
  6. Lightly oil an ovenproof dish and place the first of your corn tortillas into it.
  7. Spoon some mixture into the middle (see Photo 1) and close up the tortilla by folding over the sides.  It might be easiest to now turn the tortilla, so that the seam is at the bottom of the dish - that way they won't unroll again.
  8. Repeat step 7 with the other 3 tortillas, lining them up next to each other in the dish.  Best leave a small gap between them, so that it is easier to scoop them out once cooked.
  9. Scatter the tomato pieces on top as well as - if using - the spring onion and fresh coriander (chilantro).
  10. Now crumble over the tortilla chips and finish off with a topping of grated cheese.
  11. Put the dish in the hot oven and bake for around 20 minutes.  When ready, remove from the oven and with a knife cut through the topping, separating each individual tortilla from its neighbour (that way everyone gets enough topping & there won't be any arguments at the dinner table ;-))
Serve with a side salad, guacamole, salsa and sour cream or plain yoghurt.


To make your own fajita seasoning (as per

1 tablespoon cornstarch
2 teaspoons chili powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon paprika
1 teaspoon sugar
3/4 teaspoon crushed chicken bouillon cube
1/2 teaspoon onion powder
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/4 teaspoon cumin

Mix all of the above together in a jar and use whenever needed (makes 10 tsp of spice mix) - you can always double or triple the amounts to make a larger batch.


  1. Oh my. that looks DELICIOUS! we are a HUGE fan of Mexican food in this house. I just might have to make this. :)
    - Kristin

    1. Yay! I'm glad you love Mexican food too! Isn't it just the tastiest stuff? I hope you'll like this one! Kirsten x

  2. I would have never thought of adding the spinach--but I think it is brilliant! My family will love this. Another one going on the list.
    Jan :)

  3. The spinach works really well in this! Can't wait to hear what you think of this dish! Kirsten x

  4. I am from USA but living in Australia since 2005. I've spent MOST of my adult life living either in Southern California or my native Texas. My impression from living here is that AU's prefer Indian or Asian food over Mexican food as Mexican food is quite rare here. Even if you go to a Mexican restaurant here, they serve things that would not be found on a similar menu in Texas, for example, LAMB. Cooking is a passion for me, but it is hard to find the ingredients to cook "Mexican" from scratch here. For example, flour tortillas are in the grocery store, but corn tortillas can be much harder to find. Chipotle? forget it. Jalapeno is your most likely option. I have a book I bought on my last trip to visit family in USA. It is "TEX MEX" cooking. I am slowly working my way thru..when I can find the ingredients, that is. One thing that is in the book that is easier AND cheaper is the seasoning. It is simply a mixture of cumin, coriander, chili powder, salt, but it just works well, for taco seasoning, burritos, a pot of beans, etc My all time fave is tamales but if you want them here, you would have to make your own...debbie

    1. Hi Debbie! Thank you so much for your comments - it is really interesting to find out what type of food is available (and liked) in different countries! I agree - to cook true Mexican food can be difficult as the "proper" ingredients are often not available at supermarkets. Ours here in the UK do have a pretty good choice but certain things you would still have to mail order which makes it expensive.

      I love the simple spice mix you mentioned - I will definitely give that a go! I am sure it would work well with the fajita bake as well!

      Thanks again for stopping by & happy cooking! Kirsten x