Menu planner: Steak, green bean and tomato salad hits the spot

Thinking ahead to your next few meals? Here are some main dishes and sides to try.

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Enjoy steak, green bean and tomato salad.

Steak, green bean and tomato salad.

Cattlemen’s Beef Board

Steak, green bean and tomato salad

Cut 1 pound beef top sirloin (3/4 inches thick) in half lengthwise and then into 1/4-inch strips. In a resealable plastic bag, place beef and 2 tablespoons balsamic vinaigrette. Turn to coat, seal and marinate in refrigerator 30 minutes to 2 hours.

Heat large, nonstick skillet on medium-high until hot. Add 2 1/2 cups fresh green beans (2-inch pieces) and 1 teaspoon olive oil. Stir-fry 5 minutes. Add 1 cup halved grape tomatoes; stir-fry 2 minutes. Remove from skillet; season with coarse salt and pepper and keep warm.

Drain and discard marinade from beef. To same skillet, add half the beef; stir-fry 1 to 3 minutes or until outside surface is no longer pink. Remove from skillet. Repeat with remaining beef. Stir in 1/4 cup shaved Parmesan cheese. Divide 1 (5-ounce) bag baby spinach among 4 plates. Top with the beef and vegetables. Drizzle with more balsamic dressing. Serve with roasted red potatoes, carrots and whole-grain rolls.

Pineapple and black bean enchiladas

Makes 10 enchiladas

Preparation time: 25 minutes

Cooking time: 35 to 45 minutes


2 teaspoons canola oil

1 large onion, chopped

1 medium red bell pepper, chopped

1 (20-ounce) can pineapple tidbits, drained, 1/3 cup juice reserved

1 (15-ounce) can reduced-sodium black beans, rinsed

1 (4-ounce) can chopped green chiles

1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro, plus 10 teaspoons for garnish

3 cups (12 ounces) shredded 50% light cheddar cheese, divided

10 ounces mild enchilada sauce

10 (6-inch) corn tortillas

1/2 cup reduced-fat sour cream

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Coat a 9-by-13-inch baking dish with cooking spray. In a large, nonstick skillet, heat oil on medium. Add onion and bell pepper; cook 4 to 6 minutes or until softened. Stir in pineapple, beans and green chiles. Cook and stir until thoroughly heated. Remove skillet from heat. Stir in 1/2 cup cilantro and 2 cups of the cheese. Spread 1 tablespoon enchilada sauce onto each tortilla. Spoon about 3/4 cup vegetable mixture over sauce on each. Roll; place seam side down in baking dish. In a small bowl, mix reserved pineapple juice and remaining enchilada sauce; pour over entire surface of enchiladas. Sprinkle with remaining 1 cup cheese. Cover tightly with nonstick foil. Bake 25 to 30 minutes; remove foil. Bake 5 to 10 more minutes or until cheese is melted and sauce is bubbly. Top each enchilada with 1 tablespoon sour cream and 1 teaspoon cilantro. Serve immediately.

Per enchilada: 256 calories, 14 grams protein, 9 grams fat (30% calories from fat), 4.6 grams saturated fat, 33 grams carbohydrate, 24 milligrams cholesterol, 453 milligrams sodium, 6 grams fiber.

Carb count: 2.

Picadillo-stuffed peppers

Makes 6 peppers

Preparation time: 20 minutes

Cooking time: about 40 minutes


6 medium red, yellow or green bell peppers

1/2 cup water

1 (25-ounce) jar mushroom and olive pasta sauce, divided

1 pound lean ground beef

2 small zucchini, diced (about 12 ounces)

1 medium onion, chopped

2 teaspoons minced garlic

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon cumin

1/2 teaspoon black pepper

1/3 cup raisins

1/3 cup sliced green olives with pimentos

1 teaspoon cider vinegar

Heat oven to 400 degrees. Cut off the top fourth of stem end of peppers; remove seeds. Stand peppers and tops in baking dish. Add water, cover and microwave on high (100% power) 5 to 7 minutes or until peppers are softened. Stir 1 1/2 cups pasta sauce into water in dish. Meanwhile, cook beef, zucchini and onions in a large, nonstick skillet on medium-high for 7 minutes or until beef is no longer pink and vegetables are almost tender. Stir in garlic, cinnamon, cumin and black pepper; cook 1 minute or until fragrant. Remove from heat; stir in raisins, olives, vinegar and remaining sauce. Spoon mixture into peppers in dish; replace tops. Coat peppers with cooking spray. Bake, uncovered, 30 minutes or until sauce bubbles and pepper tops are lightly charred.

Per pepper: 286 calories, 19 grams protein, 10 grams fat (31% calories from fat), 2.9 grams saturated fat, 30 grams carbohydrate, 43 milligrams cholesterol, 618 milligrams sodium, 6 grams fiber.

Carb count: 2.

Pork with asparagus and mint

Makes 4 servings

Preparation time: 20 minutes

Cooking time: less than 15 minutes


1 tablespoon canola oil

2 tablespoons roasted red chili paste

2 tablespoons fish sauce or soy sauce

2 teaspoons sugar

1 medium onion, cut into 1/4-inch slices

3 cups fresh asparagus, cut into 1-inch pieces

3/4 pound pork (loin or thin boneless chops), cut into thin strips, 1/4 inch thick by 1 to 1 1/2 inches long

1 medium red bell pepper, cut into thin 1/4-inch strips

1/3 cup coarsely chopped fresh mint

Heat oil in a wok or skillet on medium-high. Add chili paste, fish sauce (or soy sauce) and sugar; stir well to combine. Cook 1 minute. Add onion and asparagus; stir-fry 3 minutes. Cover and cook 3 to 5 more minutes or until vegetables are tender. Remove cover and add pork and bell pepper. Stir-fry 3 to 4 minutes or until pork is cooked through. Add the mint; toss to combine and serve.

Per serving: 215 calories, 20 grams protein, 10 grams fat (40% calories from fat), 2.4 grams saturated fat, 11 grams carbohydrate, 48 milligrams cholesterol, 777 milligrams sodium, 4 grams fiber.

Carb count: 1.

Adult pizza

Heat oven to 375 degrees. Place a pre-baked 12-inch thin pizza crust on a baking sheet. Bake 5 minutes or until hot and crisp. Spread crust with 1/2 cup whipped cream cheese, 4 ounces thinly sliced smoked salmon (cut into strips), 1 cup diced ripe tomato, 1/3 cup diced red onion, 2 tablespoons rinsed capers and 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley. Season to taste with pepper. Slice and serve with a spinach salad.

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