Archive for the ‘Beef’ Category

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Spicy Beef and Asparagus Stir Fry

Tuesday, September 3rd, 2013



A stir-fry is a celebration of so much that I like about cooking. I like to prepare things in advance, and so the requisite chopping and measuring of all ingredients before you stir-fry isn’t a chore, Read more…

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Beef Enchilada Pie

Wednesday, December 12th, 2012

This time of year is my favorite for casseroles. Dishes that can be made ahead are just what I need when I’m driving kids around, Christmas shopping, wrapping and sending and just generally moving at fast clip. Read more…

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Slow Cooker Shredded Barbecue Beef

Tuesday, July 3rd, 2012

Years ago, I found the inspiration for this recipe in The New Basics Cookbook. I have adapted it for the slow cooker and it works perfectly every time. Read more…

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Greek Meatballs with Tzatziki

Friday, June 24th, 2011

Greek meatballs aren’t so different from other meatballs, but they are enhanced by classic flavors found in Greek cuisine—mint, oregano, and a hint of allspice.  These are light in texture and nicely flavored, and go really well with the classic Greek yogurt salad called tzatziki. Read more…

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Grilled Skirt Steak

Thursday, June 17th, 2010

As a child visiting the family in Texas, I remember my Uncle used to always make his fajitas using skirt steak.  It is a long, flat, usually thin piece of meat, that he said, “needed attention” before cooking so it wouldn’t be tough.  I now take the phrase “needing attention” to mean that a marinade will do the trick, and here is one that I like a lot for this flavorful cut.

If you don’t want to use the grill you can pan fry this steak instead, but the grill does make it especially good. While similar in ways, skirt steak is not the same cut as a flank steak, so if you use flank steak, I recommend marinating longer because it is a tougher cut of meat and I wouldn’t pan fry it—broil instead if you’re not going to grill.  When slicing a flank steak, also remember to slice it thinly on a diagonal across the grain.

If you’re looking for something nice for Father’s Day, try this Skirt Steak with the Red Potatoes with Sour Cream Sauce posted last and the Southwestern Chopped Salad that follows.

Grilled Skirt Steak

Serves 6

Ingredients for Steak:

2 pounds skirt steak
¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
¾ teaspoon ground cumin
1 cup cilantro leaves
1 small shallot, finely chopped
1 small garlic clove, minced
Juice of 1 small lime
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper


Whisk together the oil, cumin, cilantro, shallot, garlic, lime juice, salt and pepper in a small bowl.  Place the skirt steak in a glass dish and pour the marinade over.  Refrigerate for at least two hours and up to six.

Bring the steak to room temperature before grilling.  Grill the steak for 4 to 6 minutes on each side or until done.  Transfer to a cutting board, cover with foil and let stand for 10 minutes.  Slice and serve.

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Shepherd’s Pie

Monday, March 8th, 2010

Shepherd’s pie is a dish I associate with the English or Irish countryside, although lots of countries seem to have a version of this home cooking staple.    It is a comforting preparation of beef or lamb, covered and baked with a mashed potato topping.  I have seen it referred to also as Cottage pie (maybe referring to the humble dwellings of its earliest cooks), Potato Top Pie (in New Zealand), Cowboy pie (in Texas—here in the U.S.) and by other names I can’t spell in France, and Canada and in Russia.
It is perfect for a family dinner, dinner for two when you want to have leftovers, as a potluck contribution, or even for entertaining on a cold winter’s night.  It is easy to make and fun to experiment with.  The meat can be beef or lamb, the vegetables can vary based on what you have in the refrigerator, the topping can be enhanced by adding a handful of cheddar cheese or a sprinkling of your favorite herb.  It’s a meal in one, needing only a simple green salad on the side.

Shepherd’s Pie

Serves 6

Preparation Time:  30 minutes
Cook Time:  30 minutes
Total Time:  1 hour

Ingredients for the filling:

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 pound ground beef
2 carrots, peeled and diced
1 onion, diced
½ cup frozen peas, thawed
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 cup beef stock or broth
1 teaspoon of Worcestershire sauce
1 teaspoon fresh or dried thyme
Salt and pepper to taste

Preparation of the filling:

Heat the olive oil in a skillet over medium heat.  Add the ground beef and cook, stirring and breaking it up while it browns.  Add the carrots and onion and continue to cook until the onion is translucent and the carrots have softened, about 5 minutes.  Add the peas and continue to cook for 1 minute.

Sprinkle the flour over the meat mixture and cook, stirring, until the flour is fully incorporated.  Add the beef stock, the Worcestershire sauce and the thyme and simmer, stirring occasionally, until the sauce has thickened to a gravy consistency.  Taste and salt and pepper to your liking.

Ingredients for the potato topping:

6 russet potatoes, peeled and cubed
2 tablespoons sour cream
1 tablespoon cream cheese, at room temperature
1 tablespoon butter
Salt and pepper to taste

Preparation of the potato topping:

Place the diced potatoes in a medium saucepan, cover with water, bring to the boil and cook until the potatoes are very tender.  Remove from the heat and drain the potatoes in a colander and return them to the hot pan.  Add the sour cream, the cream cheese and the butter and whip the potatoes until they are smooth—using a hand mixer.  Taste and season with salt and pepper.

To assemble the dish:

Place the meat filling in a buttered, 9” x 13” rectangular or oval baking dish.  Top the meat filling with the potato topping, covering the meat completely to the edges of the dish.  Sprinkle paprika over the top and bake in a 350 degree oven for about 30 minutes or until hot and lightly browned on the top.

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