Make your calories count

By Tanya Davis | Published Thursday, January 20, 2011

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This week we return to focusing on Wise County 4-H’ers who learned through their foods and nutrition projects to make their calories count by including nutrient-rich foods in their diets. One great way to make your calories count is by consuming lean beef. Choose the leanest cuts by looking for “loin” or “round” in the name. It is a satisfying source of many nutrients, including protein, iron, B-vitamins and zinc.

Ty Watson, an 11-year-old Decatur 4-H’er learned in his 4-H foods project about the importance of including lean beef, along with fruits and vegetables in one’s diet. His modified recipe came from the “Healthy Beef Cookbook.” Tenderloin, cranberry and pear salad is delicious and was entered in the Intermediate Main Dish category. Congratulations to Ty as he received first place honors in the District 4-H Food Show held recently in Vernon.

Tenderloin, cranberry and pear salad

  • 4 beef tenderloin steaks, cut 3/4 inch thick (4 oz. each)
  • 1/2 tsp. coarse grind black pepper
  • 1 pkg. (5 oz.) mixed baby salad greens
  • 1 medium red or green pear, cored, cut into 16 wedges
  • 1/4 cup dried cranberries
  • Salt
  • 1/4 cup coarsely chopped pecans, toasted
  • 1/4 cup crumbled goat cheese (optional)

Season steaks with 1/2 tsp. pepper. Heat large nonstick skillet over medium heat until hot. Place steaks in skillet; cook 7 to 9 minutes for medium rare (145 degrees F) to medium (160 degrees F) doneness, turning occasionally.

Divide greens evenly among 4 plates. Top evenly with pear wedges and dried cranberries.

Carve steaks into thin slices; season with salt as desired. Divide steak slices evenly over salads. Top each salad evenly with dressing, pecans and goat cheese.

Number of servings: 4

Nutrition information per serving: 321 calories; 14 g fat (3 g saturated fat; 7 g monounsaturated fat); 67 mg cholesterol; 434 mg sodium; 21 g carbohydrate; 3.3 g fiber; 26 g protein; 7.6 mg niacin; 0.6 mg vitamin B6; 1.4 mcg vitamin B12; 2.4 mg iron; 30.0 mcg selenium; 5.1 mg zinc.

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