Beef and Vegetable Stir-Fry

Beef and Vegetable Stir-Fry


  • 1  cup  low-sodium fat-free beef broth
  • 1/4  cup  light teriyaki sauce
  • 1/4  cup  rice vinegar
  • 2  tablespoons  sugar
  • 1  teaspoon  Asian dark sesame oil
  • 1  teaspoon  Chinese five-spice powder or
  • 1/2  teaspoon  cinnamon
  • 4  teaspoons  cornstarch
  • 2  teaspoons  vegetable oil
  • 1  pound  flank steak, cut against the grain into 1/4-inch strips
  • 4  cups  broccoli flowerets (1/2 of a 1-pound bag)
  • 1    sweet red pepper, thinly sliced (about 1-1/2 cups)
  • 1  small  red onion, thinly sliced (about 1-1/2 cups)
  • 1  bag  (8 ounces) carrot matchsticks
  •   Cooked brown rice
Directions1. In a bowl, whisk broth, teriyaki sauce, rice vinegar, sugar, sesame oil, Chinese five-spice powder and cornstarch.

2. In a large skillet, heat 1 teaspoon of the vegetable oil over medium-high heat. Add flank steak and cook for about 3 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from pan and set aside. Drain any fat from pan.

3. Return skillet to medium-high heat; add broccoli and1/2 cup of water. Cover and cook for 5 minutes, or until tender. Remove cover; cook until water has evaporated. Add remaining teaspoon of vegetable oil to pan; add peppers and red onion. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 4 minutes or until crisp-tender. Add carrots; cook 1 minute.

4. Return beef to skillet. Add sauce; cook 2 minutes or until thickened. Serve with brown rice.

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Asian Pepper Steak

Asian Pepper Steak


  • 2  pounds  round steak, cut against the grain into 3/4-inch slices
  • 3  large  red or green peppers, trimmed, seeded and cut into 3/4-inch slices
  • 2  large  onions, halved and cut into 1/2-inch slices
  • 1  can  (14-1/2 ounces) stewed tomatoes, drained
  • 3  cloves  garlic, chopped
  • 1  cup  beef broth
  • 1/4  cup  light soy sauce
  • 2  tablespoons  rice wine vinegar
  • 2  tablespoons  cornstarch
  • 1  teaspoon  sugar
  • 1  can  (8 ounces) bamboo shoots, drained
  • 3  cups  cooked white rice (prepared from 1 cup raw)
Directions1. Coat a 6-quart slow cooker with nonstick cooking spray. Add steak; top with peppers, onions, tomatoes, garlic.

2. In a small bowl, whisk beef broth, soy sauce, vinegar, cornstarch and sugar. Pour over beef and vegetables. Sprinkle bamboo shoots over the top.

3. Cook 4 hours on high or 7 hours on low. Serve with cooked white rice. Note: While this dish can be cooked on low heat, the texture and color will be better if cooked on high.

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Tamale Pie

This is similar to my mom’s tamale pie, in style anyway, but with my own flavors. Great on a rainy day or just a cold day.

Note at the bottom tells how to make this dish vegetarian. 🙂

1 pound hamburger, browned
2 cups kidney beans, canned or dried
2 cups frozen corn, thawed
1 cup onion, diced
1 can diced tomatoes
1 can beef broth
1 cup cornmeal, mixed with broth
1/4 cup canned jalapeños, diced with juice
3 tablespoons worcestershire sauce
1 can medium pitted olives, drained
5 large garlic cloves, sliced thin
1 tablespoon cumin powder
1 tablespoon chili powder

sour cream
grated cheese
sliced green onions

Quick method:
In a large pot combine everything, use the canned beans instead of the dried, and cook on medium until heated through. Taste for seasoning. Serve and top with sour cream, cheese and green onions. My Hubby likes eating his with corn chips, just an idea. 😉

Long method:
I’ll do this when I have to work and want to have this mostly ready when I get home.
In your crock pot combine dried beans, washed and picked through, onion, tomatoes, broth, jalapeños, cumin, chili powder and worcestershire sauce. Stir well and set on high for 6-8 hours. Brown hamburger, mix in corn and garlic and stir into the beans in the crock pot. Mix the cornmeal with some broth (or beer, if you like) until it’s a loose paste. Mix into the beans until there are no lumps. Cook on high, covered, for another 30 minutes, then check the seasoning. Serve like above, sour cream, cheese, green onions and chips, if you like.

Note: You can make this vegetarian if you leave out the hamburger and the beef broth, you can just double the beans and use vegetable broth instead.

Call me crazy!

I went to cash and carry and found a deal. A deal too good to pass up. Especially with St. Patrick’s day coming up.

Yes, that is corned beef.
16.25 pounds of it.


We are HUGE fans of this particular cut of meat, we eat it as much as I can, especially this time of year when it goes on sale. This was roughly $1.70 a pound. Super cheap.

What am I going to do with it? Split it first of all. Probably into 4 pieces. One will go to mom. One will be cooked Sunday night. The other two I’m hoping to be able to cram into my over-stuffed freezer so we can have another on the 17th and another some time after that.

Cooking the beast.
Before cooking I usually soak it in water over night. That way some of the salt will come out since corning the beef makes it really salty and even a few hours soaking in water will reduce the salt content. Then after a nice long soak it will go into the crock pot with some fresh water and spices*. Note: if you put the spices into a tea ball they won’t be all over the meat when it’s done cooking. I set the crock pot on high for 8-10 hours. When it’s down to 2 hours to go I’ll add carrots, potatoes and onions. When it’s down to 30 minutes I’ll add, if there is room, a head of cabbage** cleaned and quartered. If there isn’t room I’ll put the cabbage in a sauce pot with a lid and ladle a couple cups of the cooking liquid from the corned beef and veggies onto the cabbage. Then replace the lid and steam the cabbage for about 10 minutes. Before serving I’ll let the beef rest on a platter for 10 minutes so it will be easier to slice. I always serve it with a honey mustard sauce that I make myself. It’s easy to make and it stores in the fridge for a long time. 2 parts honey, 2 parts grainy mustard, 1 part apple cider vinegar. That’s it. Mix it together and put in a squeeze bottle or jar.

*Spices: a mixture usually comes with your corned beef but sometimes you like to mix your own. A good mix is black pepper corns, mustard seed, cinnamon sticks, celery seed and bay leaf. Or whatever you like, it’s up to you.

**Cabbage: instead of regular cabbage I like to use savoy cabbage. It’s got better flavor and it doesn’t make your belly upset if you aren’t used to eating a lot of cabbage.

Basic Meatloaf

This is my recipe for basic meatloaf. You can add all kinds of things to it and swap out ingredients for other flavors you might be wanting. Pretty easy and quick.

1 pound lean ground beef
1/4 cup onions, diced, sauted and cooled
1 egg
1/4 cup bread crumbs
2 tablespoons worcestershire sauce
2 tablespoons ketchup
1 tablespoon deli mustard
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon fresh ground pepper
1/2 cup ketchup

Preheat oven to 350. Mix together egg, bread crumbs, worcestershire sauce, 2 tablespoons ketchup, onion, mustard, garlic powder and pepper. Gently mix in meat, don’t squish it together, it will make it tough. Shape meatloaf mixture in a baking dish making sure it’s large enough for 2 inches around each side of the meatloaf so the heat will cook it evenly and the grease will have a place to go. Cover with the 1/2 cup ketchup and bake for 45 minutes. Let cool for 10-15 minutes before cutting and serving.

Substitutions: you can use BBQ sauce instead of the ketchup and add 1/2 cup grated cheese to make a cheese burger meatloaf.

Or you can add diced carrots and celery and mushrooms, sauted and cooled first, to the original mixture for more veggies in the mix.

You can also add 1/4 cup cooked and crumbled bacon and 1/4 cup cheese to the mixture for something different.

My mom always put a couple cloves into the top of the meatloaf before cooking and then removed them before cooking and it added an interesting flavor. If you would like to try this I would recommend mixing in 1/8, or just a sprinkle, of ground cloves to the mixture before you mix in the meat.

You can use ground pork, chicken or turkey if you like but the cooking times will be a little different and you will need to check it often to make sure it doesn’t get over cooked. Or you can use 1/2 pound ground beef and 1/2 pound ground pork for a juicer meatloaf.

This recipe also makes great meat balls, just add 1 tablespoon milk and mix in before you add the meat. Roll into balls and brown in a skillet or bake in the oven on a sheet pan for 15-20 minutes in a 350 oven. Or you can throw them in a crock pot with a tomato sauce and cook on low for 4 hours.

Fast BBQ Chili Mac and Cheese

Yeah, junk food. I know it. But it doesn’t have to be all junk. If you put enough veggies in it it doesn’t count as junk. Or at least not as much. LOL!

1 box mac and cheese
1 pound hamburger
1 can kidney beans, drained and rinsed
1/4 cup onions, diced
1/4 cup red bell pepper, diced
1/4 cup celery, diced
1 can petite diced tomatoes, drained as much as possible
1/4 cup BBQ sauce
1/2 cup grated cheese

Boil pasta. While that is boiling brown the hamburger. Drain and saute the onions, red bell pepper and celery. Once the pasta is cooked make as per package instructions. Stir in hamburger, kidney beans, onions, red bell pepper, celery, tomatoes, BBQ sauce and cheese. You can serve this with a salad if you like.

Note: This is a great way to get your kids to eat more veggies. You can also pulse the veggies (not the tomatoes) in the food processor to chop them into smaller, less noticeable, pieces. And this is very tasty too so even if you’re not a kid but you like mac and cheese you will like this.

Crock Pot Beef Short Ribs

This is one of my favorite comfort foods or even special occasion foods because it’s really rich and it’s a little expensive but well worth it. Make sure you buy the beef short ribs with the bones in them, without the bones they don’t turn out right.

3-4 beef short ribs per person
1/4 cup worcestershire sauce
2-3 cups red wine (enough to come halfway up ribs)
1 beef bullion cube
1 cup frozen pearl onions
1/2 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper

In your crock pot add everything and set on high for 8 hours. The last hour or two you can crack the lid to make the sauce thicker if you want. Serve over buttered egg noodles with your favorite veggie.