All posts in the Beef category

Recipe Swap: Steak and Eggs with Molasses-Beer Sauce

Published June 21, 2013 by jenmatteson

One thing that I really like about the recipe swaps is that you never know what you’re going to get, and many times it forces you toWC-Recipe-Swap-badge-1 try something slightly out of your comfort zone.  This week’s swap theme was cooking/baking with alcohol.  Now who wouldn’t want to participate in this!?  Once again, the swap was hosted by Sarah, at A Taste of Home Cooking.  For the swap, I submitted my Guinness barbecue sauce, and was assigned steak and eggs from Coleen at The Redhead Baker.

Steak and Eggs with Molasses-Beer Sauce

Steak and eggs aren’t really my thing.  We don’t eat a lot of steak at home, very close to never.  I’d rather pay someone to cook it perfectly for me and only eat it once in a great while, but this wasn’t just any old steak and egg recipe, it was steak and eggs with molasses-beer sauce.  Sounded good enough, and I figured Nate would like it no matter what.  Now my problem was finding the time to make this.  We had an insanely busy last few days, and trying to fit in this recipe proved to be quite the task.  So when did I end up making this?  The night before it was due, which is pretty much a no-no in the swap world.  What if it doesn’t turn out right?  What if you forgot something at the store?  What if your pictures suck?  Many of these are things that could easily happen to me, but I had no choice.

Well, the only thing that went wrong was that the pictures weren’t stellar, but that’s okay.  I was very proud my steak cooking abilities.  It turned out a perfect medium, which is exactly how I like my steak.  The eggs were great, although not very photogenic.  The best part was the sauce.  To me, it was like a cross between an A1 steak sauce and a barbecue sauce.  It was sweet and spicy (of course because I added extra cayenne), and as stated by Coleen, this would be excellent on a burger!  Nate said it was really good with the yolk from the egg.  I’m guessing since I’m out-of-town all weekend, Nate will try it out on a burger, and maybe more eggs and leftover steak, and let me know how it turns out.

Steak and Eggs with Molasses-Beer Sauce

Steak and Eggs with Molasses-Beer Sauce

Source: Adapted from The Redhead Baker
Servings: 2


For the sauce:
1/2 tbsp olive oil
1/4 medium onion, finely diced
1 clove garlic
1/2 cup ketchup
1/4 cup molasses
1/4 cup apple juice
1 tbsp sugar
1/4 cup lager-style beer
3/4 tsp yellow mustard
1 tsp lemon juice
3/4 tsp Worcestershire sauce
3/4 tsp cayenne pepper
3/4 tsp paprika

For the steak and eggs:
1/2 lb boneless sirloin steak
salt and pepper
1 tsp olive oil
4 eggs


1. Melt the butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat.  Add onions and garlic and saute until onions are soft and translucent, about 5 minutes.  Add remaining sauce ingredients and whisk until combined.  Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low and simmer uncovered for 30 minutes, until the sauce is reduced to about 1 cup.  *Sauce can be prepared in advance and refrigerated overnight.

2. Heat grill or skillet to medium high heat. Season the steak with salt and pepper and drizzle with olive oil.  Cook steak for about 5 minutes, flip and cook for another 4-5 minutes for medium-rare doneness.  Remove from heat and let rest.  *If sauce was made in advance, gently re-heat in a small saucepan while cooking the steak.

3. Spray a medium skillet with cooking spray and place over medium heat.  Gently crack two eggs in the pan, leaving yolk intact for over-easy.  Cook until bottom egg white is set, about 2 minutes, and flip.  Cook for another 30 seconds to 1 minute to desired doneness.  Slide out onto serving plate and repeat with remaining two eggs.

4. Thinly slice the steak against the grain and divide among the serving plates.  Top with 1-2 tbsps of the molasses-beer sauce.

See what the other ladies cooked up for this boozy swap!

Individual Beef Wellington

Published February 17, 2013 by jenmatteson

I’ve really had a bee in my bonnet lately about my 30 Before 30 list.  My deadline is quickly approaching, and with all the wedding planning I’ve been doing, my list has been thrown to the wayside.  But, I’m getting a move on and I have somewhat tried to plan out when I’ll be making what next.  Clearly I’ve been putting off some of the more difficult items (at least I assume they are difficult…).

Individual Beef Wellington

I had planned to make just horseradish scalloped potatoes this weekend, but while I was at the store, I noticed that top sirloin was on sale, so I picked one up to make my individual beef wellington.  I’ve only eaten this dish once, and if you’ve ever watched Hell’s Kitchen, apparently beef wellington is the most difficult thing in the entire world to make well…at least according to Chef Ramsey.  Or maybe he just likes to yell 😉  That being said, I was certainly hesitant to make this.  I’ve also never worked with puff pastry, but how hard could it be, right?

Individual Beef Wellington

Individual Beef Wellington

Mistake number one, it needs to thaw.  Dummy.  Whoops!  So my schedule was pushed back by about 40 minutes.  No biggie, except Nate and I had agreed to watch my niece and nephew for the evening, and I wanted to get dinner on and take pictures before the sun went down, which means I had to do it before they got there.  That didn’t happen.  I finished it up just after they arrived, but alas, the sun had already gone down.  I still got some pics, but not like I wanted.  I got up this morning and replated them to get something decent.  This was from last night:

Individual Beef Wellington

Oh, you want to know how they taste??  Yes, let’s get to that.  In a minute.  Duxelles is what is lines the insides of beef wellington.  I never knew exactly what this was, but turns out, it’s basically just a mixture of mushrooms, shallots and herbs.  And let me tell you, just making the duxelles filled my house with such a rich aroma, I was dying to eat it with a spoon.  But I didn’t.


Thyme Seasoning Mixture

The steak made the smell even better!  I put it in a sizzling hot pan and just seared both sides quickly.  Once it was cooled, I coated them in seasoning and let them rest.  My house smelled AMAZING!

Seared Sirlion

Once the puff pastry was thawed, it was pretty easy to work with.  I laid it out on a floured surface, and gently rolled out each piece.  They weren’t perfect or anything, but hey, whatever gets the job done.

Puff Pastry

Okay, okay.  So how did it taste?  Well, I must say I make a very good beef wellington!  Nate absolutely loved it!  I don’t think it even spent much time on his plate before it was gone and he was ready for another.  The beef was cooked just barely over medium (so certainly room for improvement), but all the seasonings with the duxelles and the flakey butter puff pastry – YUM!  These would be great for a party too.  To make as an appetizer, just cut the meat even smaller so they can be 1-2 bite sized.

Individual Beef Wellington

Individual Beef Wellington

Individual Beef Wellington

Source: Adapted from Marrying Prince Charming
Servings: 4-6


1 1/2 tsp salt
1 1/2 fresh cracked pepper
2 tsp dried thyme
5 cloves garlic, roughly chopped
2 shallots, roughly chopped
6-8 large button mushrooms, roughly chopped
3 tbsp red wine
1 tbsp olive oil
2-3 rosemary sprigs, leaves only
1 lb beef sirloin or tenderloin
2 sheets puff pastry
2 tbsp stone ground mustard
1 egg, lightly beaten


1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees.  In a small bowl, combine salt, pepper and thyme.  Set aside.

2. The bowl of a food processor, combine garlic, shallots, mushrooms, red wine, olive oil, rosemary and half of the thyme seasoning mixture.  Process until all ingredients are finely chopped and well combined.

3. Transfer mixture to a medium skillet and saute until most of the excess liquid is gone, about 10 minutes.  Set aside.

4. Trim any fat from the beef and cut into 2×2 inch chunks.  Place in a bowl and toss with remaining thyme seasoning mixture until all pieces are well coated.

5. Once puff pastry is thawed and ready to work with, roll out on a lightly floured surface.  Cut puff pastry into as many pieces as you have beef pieces, making sure they are large enough to completely wrap around the beef.  Spread a thin layer of the stone ground mustard on each piece of puff pastry.  Then spread a thin layer of the duxelles on each piece, about 1 tbsp each, leaving a small border.  Place beef in the center of the puff pastry and carefully wrap.  Place on a prepared baking sheet, seam sides down.

6. Brush each wellington with egg and poke holes in the tops with a fork so they are able to vent while cooking.  Bake for 20-25 minutes, until puff pastry is golden brown and flaky.

Beef Enchiladas with Roasted Corn

Published September 10, 2012 by jenmatteson

I love Mexican food!  Chili powder, cumin and red pepper are some of my absolute favorite seasonings.  I love onions, peppers, cilantro and pretty much anything spicy, and the proteins are pretty much interchangable; chicken, beef, shrimp, pork and beans are my usual suspects.  Yum!

I never order enchiladas in a restaraunt because the filling is generally pre-made with cheese in it. 😦  But, I decided it wouldn’t be too difficult to try it out, making mine without cheese, of course, but still adding it to the top and inside of Nate’s.  Normally, I would have used chicken, but I had shredded beef leftover in my freezer (from slow cooker french dip sandwiches) that I wanted to use up.  I thawed it and drained the juices, added to my enchilada sauce base vegetables, along with some sauce, and went from there.  I also had corn on the cob that needed to be used, so I roasted it on the grill, and added it to my filling.  Great addition!

These were really, really, very  yummy, and bursting with flavors!  I can’t imagine how much better they would be if I had used chicken and cooked it in the enchilada sauce base, only for better seasoning.  Next time.  It’s a good thing we liked these, because we’ve got a ton of leftover filling, and had them the next day for the Vikings home opener (SKOL!), and made enough to have leftovers for lunch on Monday.

Beef Enchiladas with Roasted Corn

Source: Adapted from Prevention RD
Servings: 24 enchiladas


olive oil
1 medium onion, diced
3-4 jalapenos, seeded and diced
1 tbsp chili powder
1/2 tbsp cumin
3-4 cloves garlic
1 large tomato, chopped
2-3 lbs shredded beef, cooked
2 ears corn on the cob, roasted and cut off cob* (or about 1 1/2 cups cooked corn)
2 cups enchilada sauce, divided
1 cup cilantro, chopped, plus more for garnish
2 cups mexican cheese blend, shredded
24 6-inch soft tortillas (corn or flour)
raw onion, sour cream, salsa and avocado for garnish


NOTE: If using my enchilada sauce recipe, skip to step 2 and use the vegetables from the sauce base instead of cooking more in step one.  If using canned enchilada sauce, start with step 1.

1. Preheat broiler.  In a large skillet, heat olive oil over medium heat.  Add onions, jalapenos, chili powder and cumin.  Saute until soft, about 8 minutes.  Add garlic and chopped tomato and cook for another 2 minutes.  Season with salt and pepper to taste.

2. In a large bowl, combine cooked vegetables, roasted corn, shredded beef, and 1 cup enchilada sauce (enough to coat the mixture, but not so it’s soggy).  Mix in 1 cup cilantro and 1 cup shredded cheese.

3. Place tortillas on plate and cover with damp paper towel.  Microwave for 30 seconds.  Fill tortillas with 1/3 cup meat mixture, roll tightly and place in greased 9 x 13″ baking dish, seam side down (you should only be able to fit about 8 at a time and will need to repeat for remaining filling) and spray each with olive oil.  Place under broiler for 3-5 minutes, until tortillas begin to brown and crisp.

4. Remove from oven and reduce heat to 400 degrees. Pour enchilada sauce over tortillas and sprinkle with cheese (reserving more of each for additional enchiladas).  Cover with foil and bake for 20 minutes.  Remove foil and turn broiler on for 2 minutes, or until cheese browns and bubbles.

5. Garnish with cilantro, onion, sour cream and salsa as desired and serve.

*To roast corn, preheat grill to high heat.  Place corn in husks on grill until kernals on grill side are bright yellow, about 10-15 minutes.  Turn and grill for another 10-15 minutes, until corn is cooked all the way around.  Remove from grill and let cool.  When cool enough to handle, remove husks and silk, stand cob on one end, and cut kernals off cob in a downward motion.  Turn cob and repeat until no kernals remain.

Taco Pizza

Published September 2, 2012 by jenmatteson

I’m not sure I could count how many times I’ve had Mexican food in the last week, mostly tacos, but I’m certainly not complaining.  I think tacos are something I could eat every day for a month, maybe longer.  I made about 4 lbs of taco meat for one of our fantasy football draft parties, and I was happy (and kind of surprised) to see that we put down more than half.  But, of course that left me with about a pound of leftover beef.

I normally use turkey or chicken to make tacos, but seeing as though I was feeding a bunch of men, I thought beef would be best.  Plus, it was cheaper – on sale even!  Of course it still tastes delicious, but I prefer turkey or chicken as it’s a bit leaner.

I had been craving taco pizza for a few weeks, so this was my perfect chance to make it!  I threw together a whole wheat dough, minus the herbs, threw it on the grill with my taco ingredients, and viola!  After Nate took his first two bites, he said, “I could eat this until I throw up!”  I said, “Please don’t, ” to which he responded, “It’s a compliment, honey!”  And so it was, and I knew it, but it was a pretty funny way to give someone a compliment, I thought.

Anyway, the point is that this pizza was super good.  My whole wheat crust couldn’t have turned out any more perfect.  It was crisp enough to hold all the taco ingredients, and believe me, Nate’s pizza was packed full of meat and cheese, but still soft and chewy inside.  I’m so happy to have leftovers, and will continue my streak of eating “Mexican” food.  They have pizza, right?

Taco Pizza

Source: Pigzilla Original
Servings: 8 (makes 4 small pizzas)


whole wheat pizza dough/pizza dough (or use your favorite recipe or pre-made crust)
1 cup marinara
2 tbsp hot sauce
2 cups taco seasoned meat* (I used lean ground beef, but turkey or chicken would work great)
1/2 cup bell peppers, diced
2 tbsp jalapenos, diced fine
2 cups shredded cheese, Mexican blend
2 cups shredded lettuce
1 cup onion, diced
1 cup tomatoes, diced
1/2 cup cilantro, diced
salsa, sour cream, hot sauce as desired for garnish


1. Cook crust to specified instructions.

2. Combine marinara and hot sauce.  Spread 1/4 cup marinara/hot sauce mixture on each crust.  Top each with 1/2 cup taco meat, bell peppers, jalapenos (if desired), and 1/2 cup shredded cheese.  Heat until cheese is melted and crust is browned and crisp.  Remove from grill/oven.

3. Top pizza with lettuce, onion, tomato and cilantro.  Slice and garnish with salsa, sour cream, and hot sauce as desired.

*I make my own taco seasoning using a blend of chili powder, garlic powder, onion powder, cumin, cayenne pepper, paprika, oregano, black pepper and salt.  You can certainly use the pre-packaged kind if you like.

Asian Surf and Turf Burgers

Published May 19, 2012 by jenmatteson

I’m always on the lookout for a new burger to try (enter Bobby Flay into my life), and many times I make them into turkey burgers.  I saw a recipe for California Roll Burgers, and I love sushi, though california roll really isn’t a usual order for me, but I thought I’d give it a whirl anyway.  I did use beef, as Bridget said she tried turkey it in the past, but the turkey flavor didn’t stand up to the crab.

I ended up altering the recipe a bit, only because Nate couldn’t find nori at the store, and the avocados were rock hard.  So, seeing as though two ingredients that pretty much epitomizes California rolls were unavailable to me, I had to change the name to surf and turf burgers.

I have never used fish sauce before, and I got a little concerned when I was adding to my beef, as it smelled really strong.  My cats sure were getting excited though!  The end result was really good.  The wasabi soy mayo was a nice kick, but definitely not too over powering.  The beef was seasoned perfectly, and the crab mixture was a perfect finish.  I would have loved to have avocado to add a little creaminess, but it was still lovely without it.  Certainly, this is an outside the box burger, with flavors that almost everyone can appreciate.

Asian Surf and Turf Burgers

Source: The Way the Cookie Crumbles
Servings: 4 large, 6 medium-sized, 8 small burgers


2 lbs ground beef, no less than 90% lean
1 tbsp fish sauce
1/4 tsp sugar
1 tsp fresh ground black pepper
10 oz shelled king crab (from two legs, or pasteurized lump crab)
1/4 cup mayonnaise, divided
1/4 cup non-fat Greek yogurt
1-2 tbsp wasabi powder
1 tbsp low sodium soy sauce
hamburger buns
1/2 cucumber, sliced thinly
sesame seeds


1. In a medium bowl, combine ground beef, fish sauce, sugar, and pepper.  Mix gently with your fingertips, then begin to form into patties.  Set aside.

2. In a small bowl, combine crab meat and 2 tbsp mayonnaise.  In another small bowl, mix together remaining mayonnaise, Greek yogurt, wasabi powder, and soy sauce.  Set both bowls aside.

3. Grill burgers to preferred doneness.  When the burgers are almost done, toast the hamburger buns.

4. Spread wasabi mayonnaise on both sides of the buns, add cucumbers, burger, crab mixture, sprinkle with sesame seeds, and top with bun.

Slow Cooker French Dip Sandwiches

Published May 18, 2012 by jenmatteson

If you’ve followed my blog at all, you’ll notice that my “beef” category is lacking a bit.  It’s not that I don’t like beef, though I do think cows are lovely creatures, but I just don’t cook with it a lot.  I’m thinking I may have to venture out of my comfort zone if I’d like to gain more readers 😉

I do enjoy French dip sandwiches, and I also love using my slow cooker, so I thought this was really a no brainer.  The beef cooks for several hours in juicy broth with onions, and it’s so tender, you can literally peel the meat off with tongs as you build your sandwich.  The onions get super soft and add a little sweetness to the broth and your sandwich, for a perfect combination.  Top with some provolone and horseradish if you wish, and viola!

I used two cans of broth with this recipe, but the first time I made it, I used one can of broth and a beer.  My parents aren’t beer drinkers, and my dad seems to be able to pick out the taste, regardless of what it’s cooked in, so I didn’t want to use a beer this time around.  The alcohol in the beer of course cooks out, but the flavor is intensified making a more flavorful au jus and it seems to tenderize the meat a bit more.  Do what you like and what fits your tastes.

Unfortunately, this was the last meal my slow cooker will be making.  There was a large crack, which leaked much of the juicy goodness onto my counter 😦  Guess I’m in the market for a new one.  Any recommendations?

Slow Cooker French Dip Sandwiches

Source: Pigzilla Original
Servings: 12


olive oil
3-4 lb rump roast
salt and pepper
4 onions, halved and sliced thick
1 package dry onion soup mix
2 10.5 oz cans low sodium beef broth
or 1 10.5 oz can low sodium beef broth and 1 12 oz beer
12 French rolls
12 slices provolone


1. In a large skillet, heat olive oil over high heat.  Salt and pepper both sides of the roast.  Sear until browned, about 3 minutes each side.

2. Place 1/2 the onions in the bottom of slow cooker.  Add seared roast.  Sprinkle with onion soup mix.  Add remaining onions.  Pour beef broth (and beer if using) over roast and cook on low for 6-8 hours.  Roast should be very tender and shred easily with a fork/tongs.

3. Preheat broiler.  Spray rolls with olive oil and place under broiler until brown and crusty, 3-5 minutes.  Top rolls with shredded beef, onions and provolone and place under broiler for one minute more, or until cheese is melted.

Steak Sandwich Salad

Published March 27, 2012 by jenmatteson

Unless you don’t eat meat, I’m not sure I know anyone that doesn’t like a really good steak sandwich.  I took all the greatest elements out of the sandwich and added them to a salad.  While salads are usually pretty simple to make, this one is busy – a lot of elements, but trust me, it’s totally worth it.  For extra flavor, I marinated the steak in a black pepper sauce, but it isn’t necessary.  Salt and pepper would be just fine.  The crispy onions strings and homemade balsamic vinaigrette are an added bonus!  I don’t like to overload my salads with meat, so one 8 oz steak is plenty for Nate and me for dinner.  Of course you could add croutons and/or a good cheese if you feel it’s necessary.

Steak Sandwich Salad


olive oil
1 8 oz steak (marinated if desired)
1 large onion, sliced thin
1/2 green pepper, sliced thin
1/2 cup buttermilk
1/2 cup flour
2 tsp paprika
salt and pepper
4 cups salad lettuce
1/2 tomato, diced

1. In a small pan, heat olive oil over low heat.  Add 1/2 of the sliced onions and cook over low heat to caramelize, about 15 minutes.  Add green peppers for the last 5 minutes of cooking.
2. Meanwhile, cook steak over medium heat (or grill) to desired doneness.  About 5 minutes on each side for medium. Let sit for 5-10 minutes before slicing.
3. In another pan, heat 1/4 cup olive oil over medium high heat.
4. In a small bowl, add remaining sliced onions and buttermilk.  Toss to coat.  In a shallow dish, combine flour, paprika, salt and pepper.  Dredge onions in flour to coat.  Repeat dipping onions in buttermilk and then flour so they are double coated.  Add coated onions to hot oil and fry for 2-3 minutes, until golden brown.
5. Construct salad by adding lettuce and topping with chopped tomatoes,  camelized onions and peppers, sliced steak, and crispy onion strings.  Finish with homemade balsamic vinaigrette.  Of course you could add your favorite cheese if you like, possibly a swiss or provolone.

Everyone knows what a Rachel is, or do they?

Published March 19, 2012 by jenmatteson

A few years back while I was in Denver for a week-long work trip, it was brought to my attention that not everyone knows what a Rachel is.  Thinking maybe it was a Minnesota thing, I asked my co-workers for back up.  They had no idea what I was talking about.  After returning home, I had to prove to myself that I wasn’t crazy, and to my newly made friends that the Rachel exists (and that I wasn’t crazy).  My best girlfriend had my back, so I knew I was right!

There seem to be a few variations of the Rachel; some are made with pastrami, and some with turkey (the right way in my opinion!).  In case you are one of the uninformed people who have no idea what I am talking about, a Rachel is basically a Reuben sandwich made with turkey (or as previously mentioned, pastrami).

I decided to make one of each for St. Patrick’s day.  The best part about this sandwich was the Russian dressing.  Instead of using the classic ketchup and mayo combination, I spiced it up with chili sauce and Miracle Whip along with a few other ingredients.  I found my inspiration for the sauce here.



4 slices marble rye bread
1/2 lb corned beef or turkey
1/4 cup Russian dressing (recipe follows)
1/2 cup sauerkraut
4 slices swiss cheese

1. Heat panini grill or press to medium heat.  You could also use a frying pan.
2. Spread each slice of bread with Russian Dressing.  Pile 1/2 of the meat on two slices of the bread.  Top each with sauerkraut, swiss cheese, and the bread.
3.  Grill the sandwiches 3-5 minutes over medium heat on each side.  Serve with extra Russian dressing if desired.

Russian Dressing


1 cup Miracle Whip
1/4 cup chili sauce
1/4 cup plain non-fat Greek yogurt
2 tbsp cilantro
1/4 cup onion, finely chopped
1/4 cup dill pickle, finely chopped
2 tsp lemon juice
1 tbsp grated horseradish
1 tsp Worcestershire sauce

1. In a small bowl, combine Miracle Whip, chili sauce, yogurt, cilantro, onion, dill pickle, lemon juice, horseradish, and Worcestershire sauce.

%d bloggers like this: