Carne Asada

Carne Asada

Nothing beats the smoky richness of charred sliced steak stuffed into tortillas. Carne asada translates to “grilled meat” and refers to the many variations on this dish, as well as parties that center around grilling the marinated meat. Esteban Castillo, the author of the cookbook and blog “Chicano Eats,” combines the intensity of a dry spice rub with a citrus juice marinade in his recipe. Sometimes, he pours some beer into the mix too, but this version, fresh with cilantro, garlic and scallions, already gives the steak big, aromatic flavors.
  • Total:
  • Serves: 4 persons



  1. Step 1

    Make the steak seasoning: Tear the cooled chile into small pieces and place in a spice grinder, along with the peppercorns, coriander and cumin. Pulse until everything is roughly ground. Transfer to a small bowl and stir in the garlic, onion and salt.
  2. Step 2

    Marinate the steak: In a small bowl, whisk together the lime juice, orange juice, Worcestershire sauce, oil, cilantro, scallions, garlic and 1 tablespoon steak seasoning. Place the steak in a resealable freezer bag or shallow dish, and pour in the marinade. Make sure the steak is evenly coated. Seal the bag, or cover the dish and refrigerate for 2 hours.
  3. Step 3

    Heat an outdoor charcoal or gas grill to medium, or set an indoor grill pan over medium.
  4. Step 4

    Transfer the steak to a baking sheet lined with foil (discard the marinade). Sprinkle the remaining steak seasoning all over the steak. Grill for 3 to 4 minutes on each side for medium-rare, 4 to 5 minutes for medium and 6 to 7 minutes for well done. Remove the steak from the grill (but leave the grill on) and let rest on a cutting board for about 10 minutes before cutting into thin, small slices.
  5. Step 5

    While the steak rests, warm the tortillas: Reduce the grill heat to medium-low. Place the tortillas on the grill and cook until they start to blister but are not blackened, 1 to 3 minutes. Stack in a clean kitchen towel and wrap well. Serve warm, with the sliced steak and salsas.