Thursday, July 19, 2012

Farmers' Market Salad

Colorful and tasty: That's what's for dinner. With both zucchini and tomatoes available from our garden and beef stocked in the freezer, it was a perfect summertime meal. 

And, even if you don't have the fresh produce available out your back door, many towns now have farmers' markets available once or twice a week. Even our small town has one! 

I've enjoyed searching the Beef: It's What's for Dinner website, especially recipes from The Healthy Beef Cookbook. Dieters may not think about beef as part of a plan for smart eating. However, the Beef in an Optimal Lean Diet (BOLD) study, conducted by researchers at Pennsylvania State University, found consuming lean beef daily as part of a heart-healthy diet lowered LDL “bad” cholesterol by 10 percent, which was just as effective as the DASH diet. That's good news for Kansas cattle producers like us.

This research provides support that nutrient-rich lean beef can be an everyday part of a heart-healthy diet:
  • On average, a 3-oz. serving of lean beef is about 150 calories.
  • Beef is an excellent source of nutrients, including protein, zinc, vitamin B12, vitamin B6 and niacin.
  • Many of the most popular beef cuts sold at retail are lean, including T-Bone, Tenderloin, Top Sirloin and more. 
This salad will definitely be on our dinner table again!
My dietitian daughter would tell me to remind you that this is not a full-sized dinner plate, though it may appear so. I've used a smaller plate for portion control.
Farmers' Market
Vegetable, Beef & Brown Rice Salad
Adapted from   
The Healthy Beef Cookbook 
published by John Wiley & Sons
Marinade time: 6 hours or overnight
Total recipe time: 50 minutes
Makes 4 servings

1 beef top round steak, cut 3/4 inch thick (about 1 pound)
1 teaspoon olive oil
2 cups asparagus pieces (2-inch pieces)
1 small yellow squash,diced
1 small zucchini, diced
3 cups hot cooked brown rice
1 cup diced, seeded tomatoes
1 cup canned garbanzo beans, rinsed, drained
1/4 cup fresh basil, thinly sliced
1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 cup olive oil
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 tablespoon minced garlic
1 tablespoon honey
2 teaspoons fresh thyme, chopped
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon black pepper 

Combine marinade ingredients in small bowl. Place beef steak and 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. To grill, place steak on grid over medium, ash-covered coals or cook on medium heat on preheated gas grill. Grill, uncovered, 10 to 11 minutes until it is medium rare (145 degrees F) doneness, turning occasionally.

For salad: Heat oil in large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat until hot. Add asparagus and squash; cook and stir 7 to 8 minutes or until crisp-tender. Toss with rice, tomatoes, beans, basil, salt and reserved marinade in large bowl.

Carve steak into thin slices. Serve over rice salad. 

Notes: I used sirloin steak instead of top round. I also used dried thyme, since I didn't have fresh available. I used about 1/2 teaspoon, but you could add more to taste. The original recipe just called for a medium-sized yellow squash. However, since I had zucchini available, I used some of both.  The original recipe gave a broiler pan alternative for cooking:  Place steak on rack in broiler pan so surface of beef is 2 to 3 inches from heat. Broil 12 to 13 minutes for medium rare (145°F) doneness, turning once. Remove; keep warm. 

Nutrition information per serving: 514 calories; 15 g fat (3 g saturated fat; 8 g monounsaturated fat); 61 mg cholesterol; 593 mg sodium; 6 g carbohydrate; 7.3 g fiber; 36 g protein; 8.6 mg niacin; 1.1 mg vitamin B6; 1.5 mcg vitamin B12; 5.9 mg iron; 50.8 mcg selenium; 7 mg zinc.

This recipe is an excellent source of fiber, protein, niacin, vitamin B6, vitamin B12, iron, selenium and zinc.

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