Ordinarily, I shy away from beef for weekday meals. I think of it as a special-occasion meat, like putting steaks on the grill on a Saturday evening or eating fajitas out at a restaurant. However, the Texas Beef Council wants me, and other moms – who spend most of the grocery budget – to think differently, so they invited LiveMom and other “mom bloggers” to an event designed to get us thinking about beef as a healthy weekday choice. Catherine and I attended.
Chef Richard Chamberlain, chef/proprietor of Chamberlain’s restaurants, was on-hand to demonstrate and talk about cooking lean cuts of beef. He was adamant that we learn the “put down your tongs” rule, meaning that people flip their meat too often. Whether grilling, pan cooking or broiling, you should only flip once. Wait for the meat to get good and browned on one side before ever turning it to the other (just lift up a corner to check for browning).
Several of the dishes we cooked at the event followed the Eastern idea of meat as a flavoring or garnish, rather than the more Western idea of meat as the central focus of the plate. It’s a good way to use beef because it’s so flavorful, especially when seasoned and cooked properly. All the dishes, including the one I’ve shared below, came from Chef Chamberlain’s book, The Healthy Beef Cookbook.
Catherine liked learning about new ways to prepare beef that are healthier. We heard from Stacy Bates, RD/LD, manager of nutrition for the Texas Beef Council, who told us about the “29 lean cuts of beef,” all of which are leaner than skinless, dark-meat chicken. Catherine also enjoyed hearing from fellow mom bloggers about what they do to get their kids to eat healthier. From getting kids involved in growing and cooking their own food to encouraging them to “eat a rainbow” every day, our fellow attendees had some great ideas.
I enjoyed working hands-on with the food. It made me want to try more of Chef Chamberlain’s recipes from the book. The dishes we prepared at the event were straightforward, fresh and flavorful. I chose to share the Farmers’ Market Vegetable, Beef and Brown Rice Salad with LiveMom readers because it’s fresh tasting and full of good, healthy ingredients.
The recipe itself is a good base to work with if you want to play around, so you could use any fresh veggies (zucchini and sugar snap peas would be good). You could also mix it up with the herbs in the marinade, but I’d stick with basil in the salad for that fresh summer taste.
When I made it at home, I added a little red wine vinegar to the salad itself and topped it with a little crumbled goat cheese. I also cooked the brown rice in low-sodium chicken broth for extra flavor.
Farmers’ Market Vegetable, Beef and Brown Rice Salad
1/4 cup olive oil
2 Tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 Tablespoon minced garlic
1 Tablespoon honey
2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme
2 teaspoons chopped fresh oregano
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon pepper
1 beef top round steak, cut 3/4-inch thick (about 1 pound)
1 teaspoon olive oil
2 cups asparagus (2-inch pieces)
1 medium yellow squash, cut lengthwise in half, then crosswise into 1/4-inch thick slices
3 cups hot cooked brown rice
1 cup diced, seeded tomatoes
1 cup canned garbanzo beans, rinsed and drained
1/4 cup fresh basil, thinly sliced
1/2 teaspoon salt
Combine marinade ingredients in small bowl. Place beef steak in 1/4 cup marinade in food-safe plastic bag; turn steak to coat. Close bag securely and marinate in refrigerator 6 hours or as long as overnight. Reserve remaining marinade in refrigerator for dressing.
Remove steak from marinade; discard marinade. Place steak on rack in broiler pan so surface of beef is 2-3 inches from heat. Broil 12-13 minutes for medium-rare doneness, turning once. Remove; keep warm.
Heat oil in large, nonstick skillet over medium-high heat until hot. Add asparagus and squash; cook and stir 7-8 minutes or until tender. Toss with rice, tomatoes, beans, basil, salt and reserved marinade in large bowl.
Carve steak into thin slices. Serve over rice salad.
GIVEAWAY: Up for grabs is a goodie bag that includes two $25 gift certificates to Nolan Ryan Beef and some fun kitchen items from the Texas Beef Council and Nolan Ryan Beef (a chef-style meat thermometer and an apron are just a couple of the items in the goodie bag).
What do you have to do to win?
- Leave a comment telling us what you like about beef (it’s what’s for dinner, you know).
- Like LiveMom on Facebook and then come back here to leave a comment telling us that you like us!
- Follow LiveMom on Twitter and then come back here telling us your Twitter handle.
- Follow Texas Beef Council on Twitter and then come back here telling us you follow them with your Twitter handle.
One winner will be selected randomly and will be notified via e-mail on Sunday, May 15th with 24 hours to respond.
Written by: Shannon Oelrich