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As the winter days begin to dwindle down, the fresh evening wind carries a sweet aroma that announces spring’s impending arrival.

I can sense that subtle moment in nature where winter and spring teeter on one balance and I revel in the moment. Every year, I look forward to the changing of the season.

I have a craving for something refreshing yet satisfying that will cool me off from the persistent warmth of the sun here in Los Angeles. A crispy fried tostada topped with a tangy cold beef salad…. sounds like that may do the trick.

The thought of a warm crunchy tostada dripping with the cold tangy juices from dressed cucumber and lettuce salad that garnishes the savory shredded beef, now that brings me satisfaction and optimism. There is something about that warm and cold combination that I really enjoy, just like the day today here in LA - the change of seasons working in perfect synergy.


Cold Beef Salad Tostadas Recipe


  • 2 bay leaves
  • 5-6 cups of water
  • 1 tablespoon of salt
  • Romaine Lettuce – finely sliced (chiffonade)
  • 2 tomatoes – chopped, medium diced
  • ½ red onion – thinly sliced
  • 1 large cucumber - peeled, seeds removed, chopped medium dice
  • 1 bunch of cilantro – roughly chopped
  • 1 tablespoon vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice – freshly squeezed
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 8 packaged tostadas OR if making Tostadas: 8 corn tortillas plus canola oil for frying

Meat Marinade:

  • 2 lbs. Skirt Steak
  • 3 Garlic Cloves – minced
  • 1 sprig Rosemary - chopped
  • 4 tablespoons of Olive Oil

Optional Garnish

  • 2 radishes – sliced in rounds
  • 2 avocados – peeled, pitted and sliced
  • Pickled jalapeños



  1. Preparing meat: In a small bowl mix garlic, rosemary and olive oil. Place skirt steak in a glass pan and pour marinade all over, making sure it gets on all sides. Cover with plastic and refrigerate. Allow to marinade for at least a couple of hours, (the longer the better). Heat a large pot or Dutch oven, drizzle a drop of oil and sear skirt steak. Once browned on both sides, lower temperature to a low medium and add water, bay leaves and 1 tablespoon salt. Cover and simmer meat until tender, for about 90 minutes. Transfer from pot to a bowl and allow to cool in the refrigerator. Once cold, shred with hands or with two forks.
  2. If making tostadas: While the meat stews, make the tostadas. Pour oil into an iron skillet to a depth of about 1 inch and heat over medium heat until a fry thermometer reads 360°F. Add tortilla and fry turning once until tortilla turns golden brown and crispy, about 1 minute on each side. Transfer to a plate with paper towels to drain oil. Repeat with remaining tortillas.
  3. To prepare beef salad: In a large bowl add shredded beef, lettuce, tomato, onions, cucumber, cilantro, vinegar, lemon juice and salt. With two forks, mix all ingredients thoroughly.
  4. Serve Beef Salad mixture over crispy corn tostadas. Garnish with radishes, avocado slices and pickled jalapeños for a spicy kick. Salad Option: Serve Beef Salad over Romaine Lettuce Leaves.

For more of Lori's recipes, visit www.cocinachronicles.com.

Photo Credit: Lori Sandoval 

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