That Food Guy
Friday, August 28, 2015
  Gander Mountain Sportsman's Seasoning Tex Mex Rub

The wife and I went shopping at Gander Mountain the other day. While she was looking for clothing items, I wandered about the camping and cook-out areas. I found a bean crock on sale. I have always wanted a bean crock and it looked like this was the time to get one. There will be another blog about the bean crock later. While I was strolling through the aisles, I came across a rack of store brand spices. One of them caught my eye; Gander Mountain Sportsman’s Seasoning Specialty Blend Tex Mex Rub. Ever since McCormick stopped making their Fajita Marinade and Seasoning (and went to that junk in the envelopes) I have been looking for a substitute. The label promised a savory garlic and onion with chili for a zesty flavor. I picked up a bottle to try it out.
I let a couple of large boneless and skinless chicken breasts partially thaw. I butterflied the breasts and seasoned both sides with a moderate amount of the Tex Mex Rub. I placed the breasts in the refrigerator to finish thawing. An hour before grilling, I put the chicken on the kitchen counter and let the chicken warm to room temperature.
I preheated the grill, a nice scorching grill plate to make nice grill marks.  I placed the chicken on the grill, closed the cover and reduced the gas to maintain about a 350˚F. I cooked for 2 minutes and then turned the chicken pieces. I cooked an additional 2 minutes then turned and rotated the chicken pieces to make crisscross grill marks. I cooked an additional 2 minutes and then turned the chicken on to the last side and cooked an additional 2 minutes, a total of 8 minutes. I checked the temperature and had an internal temp of 150˚. I grilled for an additional 1 minute and pulled them chicken from the grill just as they reached 170˚.
To go with the chicken I made some Spanish rice and some refried beans. Not overcooked, the chicken was moist and it was tender. The main spices in the mix are salt, chili powder (with oregano and a few other things) cumin, black pepper, paprika, onion and garlic. It makes for a nice balanced flavor, none of the flavors overpowering the others. The moderate seasoning I did make for a piece of chicken with a very nice spicy flavor. If I were going to make fajitas, where the pieces of chicken are mixed with the peppers and onions, the sour cream and the guacamole, I would probably double up on the Tex Mex spice.
The wife and I both enjoyed our meal and we agreed that the chicken was very good. Considering we are having left-overs tomorrow that is a good thing. It wasn’t as good as the McCormick Fajita Spice I remember form long ago but it has earned a place on my spice shelf and it is certainly much better that the stuff McCormick puts in those little envelopes today and calls it fajita spice.
I did look up this particular spice on the Gander Mountain website. As far as I can tell, it just isn’t listed. I don’t know if it is s discontinued product (Oh, great. Here we go again, just like McCormack.), if it is just a limited circulation product, or perhaps a new product that has yet to be added to the online catalog. Either way, if you are in the neighborhood of a Gander Mountain store, stop in and pick up a bottle of the Tex Mex Rub. I think you will enjoy it. Let me know how you like the spice.

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