Recipe – Arrachera Marinade

Some weeks ago the Padrino asked me about what cuts of meat would be best to make arrachera in his native Austria, and also how to marinate it. The thought never had broached my mind as we normally just go to the supermarket or the butcher and pick up some arrachera already marinated. For those of you not in the know, arrachera is a very tender and juicy Mexican specialty cut of meat that is normally served grilled. Arrachera meat is a muscle between the thorax and the abdominal cavity that includes the diaphragm. In other markets this cut of beef is called Boneless Beef Plate Skirt Steak. It is also known as fajita meat, inside skirt steak, outside skirt steak, hanger steak, and Philadelphia steak. My favorite cut the French ‘bavette’ is also considered skirt or flap meat, as well as the flank. All of those cuts can be substituted to make nice arrachera. The meat is cut in thin strips, flattened, and marinated. Some form of meat tenderizer is used and I tend to shy away from anything with MSG and try to use vegetal-based tenderizers mostly made from papaya extracts. The strips of meat can be used in a variety of ways from being grilled as steaks to sautéed in small bite-sized pieces and used in tacos.


1 pound arrachera meat cut in strips
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
2 tbs Porto, Sweet Sherry, or red wine
1 lime, juiced
1 tbs vegetal meat tenderizer, or according to instructions on package
1 tsp sugar
1/2 tsp ground black pepper


1. Put the marinade ingredients in a large zipper bag
2. Place the meat in it, expel the air, and zip the bag
3. Mix the meat in the bag until well covered by marinade
4. Place in refrigerator for 2 days
5. Prepare in your favorite arrachera recipe


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