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Tuesday, January 19, 2010

A Full Plate

While I was debating on whether or not to start a blog, I asked some friends what to call my blog if I should ever start one. One friend, Matt (my favorite Math teacher), suggested "A Full Plate". It was catchy, it was accurate ... so, I decided that it may just be the perfect name for a blog.

I love to cook. I love perusing through cookbooks at the bookstores. I probably own one hundred ... who knows, I sure don't count them! I read cookbooks like some people read novels. It is true. I love picking out a "cookbook of the week" when I am menu planning, and trying out a couple of recipes from that cookbook during the upcoming week. I write little notes to myself in these cookbooks: Documenting the special occasion which we first enjoyed the recipe, writing my husband's "critique" of the meal, classifying the recipe for future reference.

You may be wondering what my cooking style is like. I have to say, I am Paula Deen's biggest fan. I have all of her cookbooks (and her sons' cookbooks too!) I love "down-home" style cooking. Meals like what I grew up with while living back home on the farm. "Comfort" food. I admit, I like to try new recipes too; to try to capture the same flavor and zest of dishes I have sampled in restaurants. You will see a wide variety of foods in my menus and recipe files.

Right now, my focus is to make healthier versions of my family's favorite types of food. I am trying out new "low-fat" recipes and experimenting a bit with some of my favorite recipes.

I have a little three ringed binder that my good friend Lori gave to me years ago. In this binder, I keep all of my "perfect" recipes. The recipes that are so good, I do not ever have to look for another version of that type of recipe. I have officially found "the perfect recipe" for Cinnamon Rolls, Chicken Pot Pie, Escalloped Potatoes, Blueberry Muffins ... (okay, I will not list them all right now).

One new addition to my "perfect recipe" binder is an Asian Sesame-Ginger Marinade. I used this fabulous marinade recipe to make Asian-Infused Sirloin Steaks last week. I served this savory steak with baked sweet potatoes (sprinkled with brown sugar) and garlicky green beans. My husband rated this meal as "perfection" (and has requested I make it once a week...)

Doesn't it look delicious?

Asian (Sesame-Ginger) Infused Sirloin Steak
262 calories per serving

1/4 cup plus 1 Tablespoon reduced sodium soy sauce
Juice of 1/2 of a lime
3 Tablespoons Heinz 57 Steak Sauce
2 Tablespoons brown sugar
1 inch piece of ginger, shredded
2 cloves of garlic, chopped finely
1 tsp sesame oil
1/4 tsp black pepper

Mix well and pour over a 2 pound (nice and thick!) sirloin steak. Let this marinate overnight (or at least 4 hours). I usually just use a nice big plastic bag (resealable) to marinate the steak in.

In a grill pan that is preheated, add the steak and the marinade. Grill the steak over medium-high heat until desired "doneness" is reaches, brushing occasionally with the marinade. I cooked it for about 6 minutes per side and then transferred the whole pan (steak and all) into the oven for a few minutes to finish cooking.

Let meat rest for a few minutes before cutting into individual serving sizes (or you can slice it into thin slices if that is preferred). Serve immediately.

Hope you all enjoy!


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