How to Cook Healthy Snap Peas With Beefby Carolyn Robbins
A thick, succulent rib-eye dripping with juice is delicious, but it's not a good choice for your heart health. Fortunately, there are ways to make leaner cuts of beef flavorful and healthy. Snap peas -- an excellent source of fiber, vitamin A and vitamin C -- are the perfect accompaniment to a wide variety of beef dishes including stir-fries, salads and sandwiches.
Choose an extra lean or lean cut of beef such as an eye of round roast, top or bottom round roast, sirloin tip side steak or top sirloin steak. If you are unsure which cut to choose, select the package labeled "choice" or "select" instead of "prime," which is fattier, according to MayoClinic.com. Additionally, choose meat with the least marbling -- fatty, white streaks throughout the cut.
Trim away all visible fat, and drain ground beef once it's completely cooked. Grill or broil beef to reduce the calorie count even further -- some of the fat will drip away while the meat cooks.
Select snap pea pods that are crisp and fresh. A little white scarring on snap pea pods is normal, but avoid pods that have soft or brown spots. Remove the fibrous string that connects the pod halves by bending back the stem and pulling it toward you like a zipper. Rinse the pods in cool water.
Top a garden salad with raw snap pea pods and thinly sliced steak. Whisk together olive oil and balsamic vinegar for a fresh and healthy dressing.
Stir-fry steak and snap peas with other fresh vegetables including cabbage, carrots and zucchini. Drizzle a little canola oil in with the meat and vegetables to keep them from sticking to the pan. Use a low-sodium soy sauce and serve the stir-fry over brown rice for heart health.
Steam snap peas, drain and toss with lemon juice and toasted, slivered almonds. Serve as a side dish to accompany a beef roast.
Smear a whole-wheat tortilla with light mayonnaise, mustard and a little horseradish. Wrap thinly sliced roast beef, raw snap peas, lettuce, tomato and red onion in the tortilla for a light lunch.
Toss lean ground beef with sauteed snap peas, yellow squash, onions, carrots and whole-grain pasta. Season with garlic powder, salt and pepper to taste.
- If snap peas are out of season, use frozen pods for stir-fry and pasta dishes.
- Refrigerate or freeze beef immediately after purchase. Ground beef should be cooked to 160 degrees Fahrenheit while all other steaks and roasts should reach an internal temperature of 145 degrees Fahrenheit, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Allow steaks and roasts to rest for a minimum of three minutes.
- Wash hands with warm, soapy water immediately after handling raw meat.
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