Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Beef Carnitas

This simple recipe, which uses inexpensive beef stew meat, garnered our highest rating for great flavor and versatility. To freeze the carnitas, wrap them tightly in heavy-duty plastic wrap or foil, and place in a zip-top plastic freezer bag; they will keep in the freezer for up to three months.

Cooking spray (I use a little olive oil.)
1 cup chopped onion
3 garlic cloves, crushed
2 pounds beef stew meat, trimmed and cut into 1-inch pieces
1 cup less-sodium beef broth
1 teaspoon sugar
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
1 large unpeeled orange wedge (I use a full orange.)

Heat a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Coat pan with cooking spray. Add onion; sauté 4 minutes or until tender. Add garlic; sauté 1 minute. Add beef; sauté 5 minutes or until beef is browned on all sides. Stir in broth, sugar, salt, and pepper; nestle orange section into beef mixture. Bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 1 1/2 hours or until beef is tender. (We usually need more time than that for really tender meat.) Remove and discard orange. Continue simmering, uncovered, 8 minutes or until liquid almost evaporates, stirring frequently.

Yield: 4 cups (serving size: 1/2 cup)

CALORIES 180 (40% from fat); FAT 8g (sat 3g,mono 3.4g,poly 0.3g); IRON 2.5mg; CHOLESTEROL 71mg; CALCIUM 16mg; CARBOHYDRATE 3.5g; SODIUM 320mg; PROTEIN 22.2g; FIBER 0.4g

Cooking Light, SEPTEMBER 2006

Beef Carnitas Tacos

These simple tacos are an ideal showcase for tender Beef Carnitas (or Pork Carnitas). Serve with a black bean salad. You can warm the tortillas in a nonstick skillet just until lightly browned.

2 cups chopped plum tomato (about 2 medium)
1/3 cup chopped onion
1/4 cup diced peeled avocado
2 tablespoons minced fresh cilantro
1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
8 (6-inch) corn tortillas
2 cups Beef Carnitas
1 lime, cut into 8 wedges

Combine the first 7 ingredients in a medium bowl; toss well. Warm tortillas according to package directions. Spoon 1/4 cup Beef Carnitas onto each tortilla; top each with about 3 tablespoons avocado mixture. Fold in half; serve with lime wedges.

Yield: 4 servings (serving size: 2 tacos and 2 lime wedges)

CALORIES 235 (30% from fat); FAT 7.9g (sat 2.2g,mono 3.2g,poly 0.9g); IRON 2mg; CHOLESTEROL 48mg; CALCIUM 37mg; CARBOHYDRATE 26g; SODIUM 303mg; PROTEIN 17.6g; FIBER 3.8g

Cooking Light, SEPTEMBER 2006

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