A tender, aroma-filled comfort food with a taste twist and a refreshing, colorful, tangy salad took top prizes in this year’s South Dakota Beef Cook-Off during the recent State Fair in Huron. The winning entrées, Roast Beef Caribbean Style and Citrus Steak Salad, were indicative of the variety of dishes created by home cooks and featuring one of 29 lean beef cuts.
Susan Patrick, Watertown, topped her six competitors in the Cook-Off’s adult division—and took home $500 cash—with a chuck shoulder pot roast prepared in a cast iron Dutch oven. What set this recipe apart, said CattleWomen Cook-Off Chair Karla Pazour, was a braising mixture of interesting ingredients including ginger, habanero peppers, and cinnamon. “This is not your grandmother’s pot roast,” said Pazour. “It has a subtle island-taste that still allows the beef flavor to be prominent. Roast Beef Caribbean Style proves that beef can fit into modern cuisines.” Patrick, Lincoln Elementary school principal said she used peppers from her brother-in-law’s garden. “If you prefer less heat,” she advises “use jalapeno instead of habanero or peppers to your taste.”
On the lighter side, 15-year-old Michaela DeWald of Milbank put together her beef salad and the winning combination in the youth division against five other entrants, taking home a $250 cash prize. This ninth grader at Milbank High School is no novice when it comes to cooking. She won the Cook-Off’s youth division two years ago with her Western Beef and Corn Casserole. She said she enjoyed this particular recipe, which included top sirloin steak, strawberries, goat cheese and Romaine lettuce. “I liked working with the various food groups,” said Michaela, adding that she has polished her competitive cooking skills through her involvement with the 4-H program’s Special Foods contests.
“Youth are our consumers of tomorrow,” said Pazour. “It is always amazing how capable our youth contestants are and the variety of recipes they come up with. This year, in addition to Michaela’s beef salad, we had everything in the youth division from a lasagna muffin to a complicated beef and spinach roll.”
For the second year in a row, the cook-off day also featured the Beef Basket Challenge, a beef-cooking contest between two celebrity South Dakotans. This year, Holly Hoffman, of TV’s Survivor fame, and her South Dakota legislator husband, Charlie Hoffman, vied against one another in a one-hour contest to see who could create the best beef entrée with a basket of surprise ingredients, including beef flank steak, provided them at the start of the contest. With spectators cheering them on, the Hoffman’s, from Eureka, SD, bantered back and forth while slicing, dicing and cooking. Charlie’s braised flank steak won over his wife’s grilled beef kabob’s in a People’s Choice award.
“The Beef Cook-Off and the Beef Basket Challenge ultimately encourages the consumer to be more comfortable trying new beef recipes,” says Pazour. “And this year’s theme of ’29 Lean Cuts of Beef’ provided an opportunity to prove that there is a healthy beef cut and recipe for every meal solution.”
Patrick, the adult division winner, says her family eats a lot of beef and enjoy coming up with unique ways to use less expensive cuts like the chuck shoulder roast that pack a lot of taste and flexibility. While she and her husband, Jim, compete in outdoor cook-offs with their turn-of-the-century chuck wagon, this was the first time she entered the South Dakota Beef Cook-Off. “It was truly a surprise and an honor to win,” said Patrick.
The South Dakota Beef Cook-Off and Beef Basket Challenge are hosted by the South Dakota CattleWomen and funded by South Dakota beef producers through Beef Checkoff Dollars. For a complete list of winners and recipes from the 2011 South Dakota Beef Cook-Off to www.sdbeef.org.
Roast Beef Caribbean Style
by Susan Patrick, Watertown (Adult Division Winner)
2 ½ lbs. chuck shoulder pot roast
4 garlic cloves, cut each in half
2 tablespoons olive oil
½ tsp. Rick’s Salt, ½ tsp. pepper, 1 tsp. chopped garlic
Cross cut roast and push garlic clove halves INTO roast (remove after cooking).
Rub roast with olive oil and sprinkle the roast with Rick’s Salt and pepper. Rub chopped garlic on the outside of roast.
Sear roast in additional olive oil (using high heat).
In a bowl mix together braising mixture:
One bunch green onions, slivered
2” piece of fresh ginger minced or ½ tsp. ground ginger
1 Tbsp. thyme leaves (rolled and cut fine if fresh)
1 tsp. ground allspice
1 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. ground nutmeg (less if fresh)
2 tsp. fresh ground black pepper
2 or 3 habanero or jalapeno peppers, diced & seedless (wear gloves for this part)
2 or 3 garlic cloves chopped finely
2 Tbsp. DARK brown sugar
½ cup soy sauce (regular or low sodium)
½ cup lime juice
½ cup corn oil (or other vegetable or olive oil)
Add ½ (or more) of the braising mixture to the seared roast in a roasting pan (I use a cast iron Dutch oven). Depending upon the size of the pan and the fit of the roast in the pan, it is important to have the bottom surface of the pan covered at a depth of about 1”. Add 3 Tbsp. more directly on top of the roast. (It is important to reserve some mixture for later and not have roast “swimming”!)
Bake at 300 degrees for 2 hours. Remove roast from oven and add 3 Tbsp. more of the mixture on the top of the roast. If the mixture on the bottom of the pan has reduced to less than 1”, add enough mixture to bring it back to the 1” level on the surface. Reduce heat to 250 degrees and bake for 2 additional hours. Remove the pan from oven. Let it set in the pan for 10 minutes without any heat. Remove meat from pan and remove the garlic cloves. Let the roast rest for 10 minutes on the cutting board before slicing. Slice and place on serving platter.
Serving: Splash 1Tbsp. of braising mixture across each slice/serving. Garnish with lime.
*Allowing the meat to marinate in braising mixture overnight will tenderize even the tougher cuts of beef. If you marinate overnight, remove it from marinade and wipe it with olive oil and then sear it and place it in a roasting pan with fresh braising mixture and follow all of the steps listed above.
Citrus Steak Salad
by Michaela DeWald, Milbank (Youth Division Winner)
1 lb. top sirloin steak, stir-fry, thinly sliced
1 Tbsp. olive oil
8 cups torn Romaine lettuce
2 cups sliced fresh strawberries
1 medium red onion, sliced
1 can (110) mandarin oranges, drained
1 cup pecan halves, toasted
½ cup fresh goat cheese, crumbled
6 Tbsp. olive oil
¼ cup cider vinegar
¼ cup orange juice
2 Tbsp. minced fresh parsley
2 Tbsp. honey
1 garlic clove, minced
1 tsp. chili sauce
½ tsp. salt
In small bowl, whisk vinaigrette ingredients; set aside. Heat oil in large fry pan, sauté steak for 4 to 6 minutes (steak strips are slightly pink).
Divide Romaine among four plates; top with steak strips, strawberries, onion, oranges, pecans and cheese. Serve with vinaigrette. Garnish with parsley and a rose strawberry. Serves 4.
Source: South Dakota CattleWomen News Release