Dinner for Two: Hot Hot Hot Chipotle Steak Tacos

Dinner for Two

Quick recipes for you and your dinner mate.


[Photograph: Kerry Saretsky]

When cooking for two, and living as two, it's important to keep the fire alive. In other words, to keep things hot in the kitchen. As in, taco night. Of course.

Growing up in my family, taco night was one of those unmissable bimonthly dinner events. We had all kinds of incarnations. Black bean tacos. Jumbo shrimp tacos. Spicy turkey tacos. But they all had one thing in common: 17 and a half components to each, all made from scratch, and 42 plates to wash afterwards. All of those little bowls brimming with different salsas and toppings and guacamoles—it's a big part of what makes taco night so fun and amazing, and also what makes it so ridiculously impractical for two people.

Until now. I gave myself this challenge: to develop a taco night that's practical for two.

Here's the plan: buy an inexpensive flank steak and a can of chipotles in adobo. Whiz up the contents of the can of chipotles in a mini food processor and instantly it creates this spicy, smoky, savory marinade that you pour all over the steak. Grill the steak on a hot grill pan right on the stove, along with some fresh green onions (such a great taco combo). Slice up the charred, hot, crusted steak and the green onions, and pile them into warm corn tortillas along with some simple toppings: finely preshredded cabbage (just buy it like that!), torn leaves of cilantro, a spritz of lime, and a quick mash up of sour cream and avocado to cool things down.

It all happens in one pan, but the flavors and textures are as fun, tantalizing, and complex as any family taco night out there.