Caribbean flavors instantly make us think of summer. The long, sunny days, relaxing nights, family and friends and, most importantly, barbecuing. Grill masters and kitchen gurus take heed: from the tender juiciness of Certified Angus Beef brand cuts to the convenience and versatility of canned Bartlett pears, island flavors are easy to incorporate into a summer menu. To top it off, these delectable dishes are packed with nutrients such as protein, iron and fiber--perfect for keeping everyone fueled for backyard fun. Modernize the menu by pairing old favorites with new partners: add naturally sweet fruit to salsas and kabobs, create zesty beef skewers with spicy peppers balanced with coconut, grill a Cuban-inspired burger, blend a new kind of 'colada'--the possibilities are mouthwatering. For more quick, easy and nutritious recipes, visit www.certifiedangusbeef.com and www.eatcannedpears.com.
Barbecue Beef & Pear Kabobs
1 pound Certified Angus Beef top sirloin steak, cut into 1 1/2-inch cubes
8 kabob skewers (if using bamboo skewers, soak in water 10 minutes before use)
Preheat grill to medium. Cut pears into 1 1/2-inch chunks; set aside. In a bowl, stir together barbecue sauce, honey, mustard, garlic and 3 tablespoons reserved pear juice. On 4 skewers, alternate the pear and bell pepper pieces. Place beef cubes on remaining 4 skewers. Brush all skewers liberally with the sauce mixture. Grill skewers 5 to 8 minutes, turning and brushing occasionally with sauce, until beef is cooked to desired doneness and peppers are heated through. Serve 1 beef kabob and 1 pear kabob per serving. Makes 4 servings.
Fire & Ice Salsa
1 can (15 ounces) Bartlett pear halves or slices, drained and finely chopped
In a medium bowl combine the pears, watermelon, bell pepper, onion, cilantro, chilies and lime juice until blended. Let stand for 15 minutes to allow flavors to blend, or cover and chill up to 4 hours before serving time. Serve with desired vegetables and chips for dipping. Makes 12 servings.
Caribbean-Style Beef Skewers
2 pounds Certified Angus Beef top sirloin steak, culotte steak or tri-tip
Preheat grill to medium. Cut beef across the grain into 1 1/4-inch strips. Combine barbecue sauce, soy sauce, Worcestershire sauce and brown sugar. Pour sauce over beef, cover and marinate 2 to 3 hours in refrigerator; discard marinade after use. Skewer each piece of beef; season with Jerk seasoning and grill 5 to 8 minutes or to desired doneness. Sprinkle with toasted coconut and serve with lime and cilantro. Makes 4 entrée or 8 appetizer servings.
Cuban Pear Mojo Burgers
1 1/2 pounds Certified Angus Beef ground chuck, sirloin or round
In a small skillet, heat 1 tablespoon oil; sauté chilies and garlic for 1 minute, stirring frequently. Remove from heat and stir in lime juice, salt and 3 tablespoons reserved pear juice. Return pan to heat and bring mixture to a boil. Remove from heat, cool slightly. Combine ground beef and pepper/garlic mixture in a medium bowl, mixing lightly but thoroughly. Shape into four patties. Grill patties, uncovered, for 12 to 14 minutes or until no pink remains (160 F) and juices run clear, turning occasionally. Place onion slices on grill grid, brush with 2 teaspoons olive oil and grill 8 to 12 minutes, turning occasionally. Layer burger, onion and pears on Kaiser rolls. Makes 4 servings.
1 can (15 ounces) Bartlett pears, packed in juice, drained
In a blender container, combine pears, undrained pineapple, coconut cream or milk, and rum. Blend until smooth. Add frozen yogurt or ice cream, 1 cup at a time; blend until smooth. If desired, garnish with toasted flake coconut or a fresh pineapple spear. Variation: For non-alcoholic smoothie, reserve pear juice. In place of rum, add 1 tablespoon rum flavoring and 1/2 cup pear juice. Blend as above. Makes 4 servings.
Grill With Ease
--The best beef cuts for grilling are ribeye, rib, top loin, T-bone, Porterhouse, tenderloin, sirloin, top blade and tri-tip.
--Chuck shoulder steak, chuck eye steak, and flank steak can also be good on the grill if marinated for 6 to 8 hours in the refrigerator. Need ideas for marinades? Try teriyaki sauce, salsa or Italian salad dressing.
--Never cut your meat while on the grill to check doneness. Cutting meat allows natural juices to escape, which means you could lose flavor. Let a meat thermometer help you grill to perfection. If you're grilling steaks, the thermometer should read 150 F for medium doneness. Burgers should always be grilled to at least 160 F.
--Allow your steaks to rest about 10 minutes (5 minutes for burgers) after you remove them from the grill. During this time, juices will redistribute throughout the meat, adding flavor and juiciness in every bite.