In Mexican cuisine, carne asada (literally 'grilled meat' (specifically beef), though any type of dry heat cooking may be used) is made from thin marinated beef steak. The meat is marinated by rubbing with salt or with spice rubs such as lemon and pepper or garlic salt and lime before being cooked on a grill. It is usually cooked with a certain amount of searing, to impart a heavily barbecued flavor. The meat can be served alone or chopped and used in tacos, burritos, piratas, or quesadillas. Carne asada is often served with fresh guacamole, grilled onions, black beans or frijoles charros, and fresh salsa. Carne asada can also be topped with chismol, a home made salsa. Chismol is made with onions, bell peppers, tomatoes, olive oil, red wine vinegar, salt, pepper, cumin, and oregano.
The dish is commonly prepared in the northern and western parts of Mexico (in the states of Sonora, Baja California, Baja California Sur, Coahuila, Sinaloa, Chihuahua, Nuevo León, Durango, Tamaulipas, Nayarit, Zacatecas, Colima, Michoacán, Aguascalientes, Guanajuato, San Luis Potosí and Jalisco) as well as in the American Southwest (especially Southern California, Arizona, New Mexico, and Texas). It can be found as the main ingredient in tacos and burritos, or is simply served stand-alone. It is sold at Mexican meat markets called carnicerías in the American Southwest and especially those states with Mexican/Mexican American enclaves.
Carne asada can be purchased from meat markets either prepared (preparada, i.e., already marinated) or not (no preparada), for marinating at home.
As an event
- Bayless, Rick (2000). Mexico One Plate at a Time. New York, NY: Scribner. p. 283. ISBN 0-684-84186-X.
- Carne Asada - This Mexican Tradition is Much More Than Just a Meal