Monday, November 9, 2009

Bringing Home The "Best Of Beef"

(NAPSI)-Fresh, flavorful ingredients and nutrient-rich beef cuts won the prize at this year's Best of Beef competition. With her recipe for Sonoma Steaks with Vegetables Bocconcini, home cook Mary Hawkes of Prescott, Ariz. won the 28th National Beef Cook-Off® $25,000 grand prize, topping recipes from 14 other finalists.

The winning recipe featured grilled beef top loin steaks, zucchini, yellow bell pepper and red grape tomatoes tossed with herb-marinated fresh mozzarella balls. In addition, the dish is an excellent source of protein, niacin, vitamin B6, vitamin B12, selenium and zinc, and a good source of iron.

The judges raved about Hawkes' recipe because of its overall simplicity, her efficient use of ingredients and the mellow flavor and texture of the mozzarella balls partnered with the smoky grilled steak and vegetables:

Sonoma Steaks with Vegetables Bocconcini

Total Recipe Time: 30 minutes

Marinade Time: 15 minutes to

2 hours

2 boneless beef top loin (strip) steaks, cut ¾ inch thick (about 8 ounces each)

1 container (9 to 16 ounces) herb-marinated, small fresh mozzarella balls (bocconcini)

3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar

1 medium zucchini, cut diagonally into ¼-inch thick slices

1 large yellow bell pepper, cut into ¾-inch-wide strips

1 cup small red grape tomatoes

Drain bocconcini, reserving and combining ⅓ cup marinade and vinegar in small bowl; toss zucchini and bell pepper with 2 tablespoons marinade mixture, refrigerating until ready to use. Place beef steaks and remaining marinade mixture in food-safe plastic bag, closing bag securely; marinate in refrigerator 15 minutes to 2 hours.

Remove steaks and vegetables from marinade, discarding marinade. Place steaks on one half of grill over medium, ash-covered coals; place vegetables in grill basket on other half of grill. Grill steaks, uncovered, 10 to 12 minutes (over medium heat on preheated gas grill, covered, 7 to 10 minutes) for medium rare (145°F) to medium (160°F) doneness, turning occasionally. Grill vegetables 10 to 13 minutes or until crisp-tender, stirring occasionally, adding tomatoes during last 2 minutes of grilling.

Combine grilled vegetables and bocconcini in large bowl, tossing gently to combine, and carve steaks into slices, seasoning with salt, as desired. Serve beef with vegetable mixture.

Makes 4 servings

To view this year's winning recipes, visit

Fayette Front Page
Georgia Front Page
Arts Across Georgia

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