Low Fat Tips
Recipes: Quick Fajitas and Savory Beef Stew
Tips For Trimming Fat
- Select lean cuts of beef. Look for those with loin or round in the name.
- Trim fat before cutting beef into strips or pieces for stir-fry, kabobs or stew. For other cooking methods, cook beef first, then trim any external or inside fat before eating.
- Use low-fat cooking methods: broiling or roasting on a rack; pan-broiling; grilling; or "under cover" cookery.
- Use vegetable cooking spray in place of fat for browning meat.
- Cook meats in a heavy non-stick skillet without added fat.
- Stir-fry vegetables in water or broth instead of oil. It not only eliminates fat but the vegetables retain their color better and they're fresher tasting.
- Reduce oil called for in marinades to no more than 1 teaspoon per 1/2 cup marinade, or eliminate the oil altogether.
- Substitute low-fat, low-calorie versions of ingredients. For example, substitute nonfat dairy sour cream or dairy sour half-and-half for sour cream.
- Cook with fresh ingredients that add flavor but not contribute extra fat such as lemon juice, hot and sweet peppers, onion, garlic, tomatoes and ginger.
- Chill soups and stews after cooking in order to remove fat from the surface after it solidifies.
Quick Fajitas with Pico De Gallo
Total preparation and cook time: 45 minutes
- 1 pound boneless beef top sirloin steak, cut 3/4 inch thick
- 8 flour tortillas (each about 8 inches), warmed
- 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
- 2 teaspoons vegetable oil
- 2 cloves garlic, crushed
Combine marinade ingredients. Place beef steak in plastic bag; add marinade, turning to coat. Close bag securely and marinate in refrigerator 20 to 30 minutes, turning once.
Meanwhile prepare Pico de Gallo.
Remove steak from marinade; discard marinade. Place steak on grid over medium coals. Grill approx. 12 to 16 minutes for medium-rare to medium doneness, turning once. (Or broil, 2 to 3 inches from heat, approx. 12 to 15 minutes.)
Trim fat from steak. Carve steak crosswise into slices; serve in tortillas with Pico de Gallo.
Pico de Gallo
- 1/2 cup diced zucchini
- 1/2 cup seeded, chopped tomato
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
- 1/4 cup prepared picante sauce or salsa
- 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
In medium bowl, combine all ingredients; mix well.
Makes 4 servings (serving size: 2 filled tortillas and 1/4 cup Pico de Gallo).
Nutritional information per serving:
- 433 calories
- 32 g protein
- 13 g fat (4 g saturated fatty acids)
- 116 calories from total fat (55 calories from fat in beef)
- 76 mg cholesterol
- 5.2 mg iron
- 507 mg sodium
Savory Beef Stew with Roasted Vegetables
Total preparation and cooking time: 2-1/2 hours
- 1-3/4 pounds boneless beef bottom round
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 3 cloves garlic, crushed
- 1 can (13-3/4 to 14-1/2 ounces) ready-to-serve beef broth
- 2 teaspoons dried thyme leaves
- 12 medium mushrooms
- 6 plum tomatoes, each cut lengthwise into quarters, seeded
- 3 small onions, each cut lengthwise into quarters
- 1-1/2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1-1/2 tablespoons plus 2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar (divided)
- 1 tablespoon cornstarch, dissolved in 2 tablespoons water
- 3 cups cooked couscous
Trim fat from beef. Cut beef into 1-inch pieces. In Dutch oven, heat 1 tablespoon oil over medium heat until hot. Add beef and garlic (1/2 at a time) and brown evenly, stirring occasionally. Pour off drippings. Season with 3/4 teaspoon pepper. Stir in broth and dried thyme. Bring to a boil; reduce heat to low. Cover tightly and simmer 1-1/2 to 2 hours or until beef is tender.
Meanwhile heat oven to 425 degrees. Lightly spray 15 x 10-inch jelly roll pan with vegetable cooking spray. Place vegetables in pan. Combine 1-1/2 tablespoons oil and 1-1/2 tablespoons vinegar; drizzle over vegetables, tossing to coat. Roast in 425 degrees oven 20 to 25 minutes or until tender.
Bring beef stew to a boil over medium-high heat. Add cornstarch mixture; cook and stir 2 minutes or until sauce is slightly thickened and bubbly. Stir in roasted vegetables and remaining 2 teaspoons vinegar. Serve with couscous.
Makes 6 servings (serving size: 1/6 of recipe)
Nutritional information per serving:
- 374 calories
- 33 g protein
- 13 g fat (3 g saturated fatty acids)
- 120 calories from total fat (63 calories from fat in beef)
- 82 mg cholesterol
- 4.9 mg iron
- 268 mg sodium
This page originally published as a FoodDay article in 1997.
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This page modified February 2007