Asian Beef & Broccoli

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Posted by Erin

The only “vegetables” (even if you can call them that) I at as a child were potatoes and hominy.  Hominy… not sure that even qualifies as a vegetable, it’s so over-processed.  My mom tried everything to get me to eat my vegetables.  She tried making me sit at the table until I ate them… I was apparently a very strong willed child.  She tried seasoning them differently or “hiding” them in casseroles… I didn’t fall for that.   She even tried paying me.  That one actually worked… until she quit paying me, then I quit eating them.  My poor mom.  Fortunately, my taste buds have changed and now I’m a lover of all foods, meat and vegetables alike.  Luckily for me, my kids are a lot better eaters than I was as a child.  One of their favorite veggies is broccoli so we have it a lot.  We like it roasted, steamed & seasoned, covered in cheese, or incorporated into a dish such as this one.  This Asian Beef & Broccoli is a one-pan meal, which you know I love!  (Okay, two pans if you count the one you cook the rice in.)  It’s fast & easy to prepare and tastes like Chinese take-out!

Ingredients:

½ c. beef broth (I use water & beef bouillion)

3 T. cornstarch, divided

2 T. sweet chili sauce (found in the Asian section of the grocery store)

4 T. low sodium soy sauce

1 T. garlic, minced

½ tsp. fresh ginger or ginger paste

¼ tsp. red pepper flakes (optional)

1 T. sesame oil, divided

1 (12 ounce) bag frozen broccoli florets, thawed and drained on paper towels (I chop them smaller so they spread more evenly throughout the dish & cook faster.)

½ a medium onion, chopped

1 lb. tenderized round steak (a.k.a. cube steak), trimmed and cut into small strips

1 tsp. garlic powder

1 tsp. onion powder

Salt & pepper

Cooked rice, for serving (We also like to have more soy sauce on hand to season our rice.)

 

Instructions:

In a small bowl, combine beef broth, sweet chili sauce, 1 tablespoon cornstarch, minced garlic, ginger, soy sauce, and red pepper flakes (if desired); set aside.

In a large skillet or wok, heat ½ tablespoon sesame oil over medium-high heat.  Sautee the broccoli, stirring frequently, until it gets some brown coloration on it.  Turn off heat, remove broccoli from the pan, and set aside.

In a bowl or plastic baggie, sprinkle steak strips with corn starch, garlic powder, onion powder, and a dash of salt & pepper; toss to coat.

Heat remaining ½ tablespoon sesame oil in the skillet again over medium high heat.

Add beef; cook and stir until brown and juice runs clear.

Add broth mixture & broccoli to pan with beef.

Reduce heat to low.

Simmer & stir about 5 minutes, until broccoli is tender and sauce is thickened.

Serve over rice; add more soy sauce, if desired.

 

Weight Watchers info:  Each 8 ounce (weight) serving is 6 SmartPoints; makes 4 servings.

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Asian Lettuce Wraps

IMG_0416Posted by Tracy

When your favorite Asian restaurant is an hour from home, you learn to improvise – or at least I do.  I’ve learned to make my two favorites: Lettuce Wraps and Orange Chicken (I’ll share the chicken recipe with you later).  I’ve tweaked these Lettuce Wraps to my family’s liking by adding a little spice.  We had these for dinner tonight and they’re delicious – and at 6 SmartPoints per serving (for four servings) you can eat a lot! All you’ll need to do is remember to buy some fortune cookies.

 

Ingredients:

1 pound 99% fat free ground turkey (I’ve also used very lean ground chicken)

1 medium onion, chopped (about ¾ c.)

2 oz. pine nuts

2 T. minced garlic

1 T. reduced-sodium soy sauce

¼ c. hoisin sauce

1 T. minced fresh ginger

1 T. rice wine vinegar

2 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes (more or less to taste)

1 can (8 oz.) water chestnuts, drained and finely chopped

1 bunch green onions, thinly sliced

2 tsp. Asian sesame oil

1 head lettuce or bunch of romaine lettuce

Instructions:

Rinse lettuce leaves, keeping them whole.  Set aside on paper towels to dry.

Cook turkey and onion together in large skillet.  Once turkey is approximately half cooked, add the garlic, soy sauce, hoisin sauce, ginger, vinegar, and crushed red pepper.  Continue cooking.

When meat mixture is fully cooked, add water chestnuts, pine nuts, and green onions.  Cook until green onions just begin to wilt.  Stir in sesame oil.

Spoon mixture into the middle of a large lettuce leaf.  Fold or wrap lettuce leaf around meat mixture to eat.

4 servings = 6 SmartPoints each