The Beauty in the Beef

For the love of South Dakota Beef

Archive for the month “February, 2014”

Beef Satay with Peanut Dipping Sauce

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I’ve mentioned before that Flank steak is one of my personal favorites.  It’s ultra-lean and its nice, thin cut is ideal for salads, wraps, stir-fry, etc.  Flank steak contains extra connective tissue which may make it less tender, but using a simple acidic marinade is all it takes to make this a high-protein, low-fat steak a delicious and nutritious addition to your diet.

This week I’ve featured a Flank steak in a new outside-of-the-box recipe: “Beef Satay with Peanut Dipping Sauce.”  I love Thai food and beef satay is one of my favorite beef dishes. My family and I really enjoyed this and I encourage you to use this recipe as a fun change up to your usual menu!

 Introducing my family to dishes from other cultures around the world is something I love to do.  There are so many different cuisines out there and each offers a unique flavor profile.  Don’t be afraid to try something new and different, you never know when you’ll discover a new favorite!

Beef Satay with Peanut Dipping Sauce
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Ingredients:
Marinade:
2 Tbsp lime juice
2 tsp grated lime zest
1 Tbsp reduced-sodium soy sauce
2 tsp minced garlic
1 tsp ground ginger
1 tsp brown sugar
1 tsp ground turmeric
1/2 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp ground coriander
1/2 tsp ground pepper
1lb Flank (or Skirt) steak

Peanut Dipping Sauce
1/2 Cup finely chopped onion
2 tsp peanut or canola oil
2 tsp minced garlic
1 tsp ground ginger
1 tsp grated lime zest
1/2 Cup lite coconut milk
1/4 Cup unsalted natural peanut butter
1 Tbsp ketchup
1 Tbsp lime juice
1 tsp brown sugar
1 tsp Asian Chile sauce, Sriracha or other hot sauce (optional)

Directions:
1. Combine marinade ingredients in a small bowl and whisk together. Image

2. Cut steak lengthwise into 1 inch strips.

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3. Place steak strips into a food-safe plastic bag with marinade and coat evenly.  Securely seal the bag and place on the bottom shelf of your refrigerator for 2-12 hours, rotating periodically.
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4. To prepare dipping sauce, combine onion and oil in a small saucepan.  Cover and cook over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally, until soft (about 5 minutes).  Stir in garlic, ginger, lime zest and cook, stirring continuously for 2 minutes.  Add coconut milk, peanut butter, ketchup, lime juice, brown sugar and hot sauce; stir until well blended.

5. To prepare satays: Preheat oven by turning your broiler on high (you could also use a gas grill…if you live in Florida :)).  Remove steak from marinade and gently pat with a paper towel to remove any excess marinade which may cause smoking.  Thread steak onto skewers and place on a coated broiler pan.

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6. Cook satays for 3 minutes per side, flipping once for medium (use an instant read thermometer to check internal cooking temperature; 145 degrees for medium rare and 160 degrees for medium).
7. Warm the dipping sauce, if desired and serve with satay skewers.
8. Enjoy!
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Feel Good About Beef

 

There’s no doubt about it, the amount of choices that are available to consumers today are overwhelming.  Then add the plethora of studies and research, diet trends, celebrity endorsements, etc. it’s no wonder the average consumer lacks confidence in today’s food industry.  We certainly don’t have all the answers.  What we do have are facts about beef; its production and its nutrition.  Facts that are backed by medical research, proven science and sound beef production practices.  So here’s a few of those facts that should help you feel better about choosing beef.

                           Top 5 Reasons to Choose Beef 

1. Lean Protein. A significant amount of research has been performed on animal protein and its role in the human diet.  The evidence is out there and it’s undeniable that beef protein is an optimal choice for healthy and active lifestyles.  Beef is a compete, high-quality protein that contains all the essential amino acids, or building blocks, the body needs to stay healthy.  If you live an active life style, you know that your body requires adequate protein in order to prevent muscle breakdown and injuries.  Lean beef is a great source of protein, containing 25 grams in a single 3 oz serving.  Here’s a tip: keep beef jerky in your gym bag for a quick high protein snack to refuel with after a workout!

2. Multivitamin. What many people aren’t aware of, is that beef contains ten essential nutrients that our bodies need.  In addition to protein, beef is also a good source of iron.  Unlike plant proteins, beef is the food supply’s most readily available and easily absorbed source of iron.  Iron not only helps red blood cells carry oxygen to body tissue, but it also plays an important role in cognitive health, including memory, ability to learn and reasoning.  For the mommy’s out there, this has to make you feel good about putting beef on the table!
An additional key nutrient that beef contains is zinc, which fuels thousands of bodily processes including building muscles, healing wounds, maintaining the immune system and contributing to cognitive health.  Beef is an excellent and good source of both vitamin B12 and B6.  These vitamins are needed for nervous system function, red blood cell formation, as well as the production of antibodies which help the body fight infection.
Riboflavin, selenium, phosphorus, niacin and choline are also all found in beef and contribute a variety of benefits to your health, ranging from promoting healthy skin, aiding in digestion, reducing damage from free radicals, and promoting brain and memory development in growing fetuses and newborn infants (hint, hint to all the mommies-to-be out there!).

3. Versatility. Working full-time and running a household can turn into a three ring circus rather quickly.  Consequently, putting a home cooked meal on the table that’s both nutritious and delicious isn’t always an easy thing to do.  Throw a couple picky eaters in the mix and you have yourself a real good time!  Fortunately there’s an element of comfort and familiarity that goes along with serving beef. When I’m trying out a new recipe on my family and they ask what’s in it, all I have to say is beef and they’re happy!

4. Flavor. This one goes without being said, beef tastes good! No studies needed here to show that people enjoy beef’s flavor and prefer it over other protein choices.  One of my favorite quotes I’ve heard is “People don’t celebrate with chicken”. 🙂 Isn’t that the truth? If you and your family have something to celebrate, whether it’s an anniversary, a raise at work or just a rare date-night, you don’t say “Hey Hunny, let’s go get a chicken breast and celebrate!”  We love beef and we love it’s savory and satisfying flavor.

5. Roots. So much of who we are revolves around our upbringing.  Living in a state that has more cattle than people makes the beef industry a profound source of revenue and a livelihood for many.  When I purchase beef I know that I’m supporting my fellow South Dakotans and in the midst of our economic chaos- that is one purchase that I can actually feel good about making.

Life is crazy and full of the unknown.  But this is what we do know, and that’s the confidence we have in choosing beef.

Crockpot Cilantro Lime Steak Fajitas

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Thanks to this heat wave in South Dakota I can’t help but picture myself in Mexico with my toes in the sand! So naturally this week I made fajitas! Mexican food is one of my all-time favorites and this recipe is a winner for anyone who enjoys a flavor fiesta in their mouth.  Add homemade guacamole and chips to the the table and wash it down with a fresh margarita or ice cold cerveza!

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Ingredients:
1 lb. flank or skirt steak
1 medium onion
1 Cup beef stock
1 packet Mrs.Dash Fajita Seasoning
Freshly squeezed juice from 1 lime
1/4 Cup chopped cilantro
1 can diced green chilies
Tri-colored bell peppers
Whole grain tortillas
Toppings of choice

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Directions:

1. First, slice the flank steak lengthwise, then cut into strips.

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2. Next, chop onion and layer in the bottom of the crockpot.
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4. In a bowl, whisk together beef stock, lime juice, fajita seasoning and cilantro.
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5. Add the steak to the crockpot and top with green chilies.  Then cover with seasoning mixture.
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6. Cook for 6-8 hours on medium to low heat. Add sliced peppers to the crockpot 30 minutes prior to serving.
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7. Build your fajitas using whole grain tortillas and your favorite toppings such as low-fat sour cream, shredded cheese, fresh salsa, and my favorite, guacamole! Garnish with additional fresh chopped cilantro for added flavor!

8. Enjoy!

Bacon Cheeseburger Wraps

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Welcome back beef lovers! This week I wanted to feature a recipe that could please the pickiest of eaters and easily become a family favorite (while offering nutritionally rich ingredients, of course).  Based upon my family, I’d say I nailed it.  There were no leftovers and my picky eaters were asking for seconds! That’s a win for this Mommy! So here’s my twist on an American classic, the bacon cheeseburger.

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Ingredients:
1 lb. lean ground beef
2 Tbsp ketchup
2 Tbsp mustard
1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
1/4 Cup chopped dill pickles
1/4 Cup bacon pieces
shredded cheese
lettuce
tomatoes
Whole grain tortillas

Directions:
1. Brown ground beef, draining any excess fat.
2. In a small bowl mix together ketchup, mustard and Worcestershire sauce.  Add to ground beef.
3. Combine chopped dill pickles and bacon pieces to the ground beef mixture.  Stir and let simmer on low heat.

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4. Spread 3 oz. of beef mixture to a whole grain tortilla and sprinkle with shredded cheese.  Garnish with any additional desired toppings (lettuce, tomato, onion, etc.).
5. Enjoy!

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Valentine Steak Dinner for Two

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Valentine Steak Dinner for Two

I’m sure most of you are aware by now that next Friday, February 14th, is Valentine’s Day (for those of you who were not- you’re welcome).  For you hopeless romantics out there that have a romantic evening planned that will sweep your significant other off their feet, good for you.  For those of you who are planning to have a nice, quiet evening in with your love, good for you as well!  As long as you’re with the one your heart belongs to and can feel the love, that’s what it’s all about.

As for me and my Valentine, a steak and potato dinner prepared by yours truly is about as good as it gets in his book and I can’t complain. 🙂 This week’s blog recipe is one that you can use time and time again.  At home date night is our favorite and we hope you enjoy it as much as we do.

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Ingredients: 

1/4 Cup Dry Red Wine
1/4 Cup Beef Stock
1 Tbsp Balsamic Vinegar
1 Tbsp Worcestershire Sauce
2 Cloves Garlic, Minced
1 Tbsp Grainy Dijon Mustard
2 Sirloin or Flat-Iron Steaks
Salt & Black Pepper
2 Sweet Potatoes, cut into 3/4 in wedges
2 Tbsp Olive Oil
1 Tbsp Thyme
Black Pepper

Directions:
1. In a large resealable plastic bag, combine the wine, stock, vinegar, Worcestershire sauce, garlic, and Dijon mustard.  Season the steaks with salt and pepper and add to the marinade.  Refrigerate for 4 hours, turning occasionally.
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2. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.  Soak the potatoes in salted water in a large bowl for a few minutes.  Drain and pat dry.
I found these crinkle cut raw sweet potatoes at the grocery store and decided to give them a shot.  They were great!
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3. Toss the potatoes with about 2 Tbsp of olive oil and season with thyme, salt and black pepper.  Place potatoes on a baking sheet and bake for 20 minutes, then remove and cool to room temperature. After cooking the steaks, you will put them back in the oven for desired crispiness.

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4.  Drizzle olive oil in a skillet and heat over medium to high heat.  Lightly pat the steaks to remove excess liquid and brown on each side.  This will only take a few minutes.  Then place steaks on a broiler rack in oven and broil on high until desired doneness.  (Use an instant read thermometer to check internal cooking temperature; 145 degrees for medium rare and 160 degrees for medium.)  Remove and allow to rest, lightly tenting a creased piece of tin foil over them.
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5. Heat oven to 450 degrees and bake the potatoes until deeply golden and crispy (approximately 15 minutes). This can be done while the steaks rest and you prepare the remainder of your meal.
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6. Enjoy this nutritious, heart-healthy and delicious at home date night steak dinner for two!

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