Skillet Teriyaki

Serves 4.

Note: From “Dinner for Everyone,” by Mark Bittman.

• 1 1/2 lb. skirt steak

• 2 tbsp. good-quality vegetable oil, divided

• Salt and pepper

• 1 tbsp. chopped garlic

• 1 tbsp. chopped fresh ginger

• 1/4 c. honey

• 1/2 c. soy sauce

• 2 green onions, sliced, for garnish

Directions

If you have time, put the steak in the freezer for up to 30 minutes.

Put a large skillet over medium-high heat. Slice the steak against the grain as thin as you can manage. When the pan is smoking hot, add 1 tablespoon oil and swirl to coat. Add half the beef to the skillet, sprinkle with salt and pepper, turn the heat to high, and cook undisturbed until it’s browned on the bottom and releases easily from the pan, 3 to 5 minutes. Transfer to a bowl and repeat with the remaining 1 tablespoon oil and beef.

Add the garlic and ginger to the pan and cook, stirring frequently until soft, 2 to 3 minutes. Stir in the honey, soy sauce and 1/2 cup water. Bring to a boil. Reduce the heat so the mixture bubbles gently and cook, stirring occasionally, until the sauce thickens and lightly coats the back of a spoon, 2 to 3 minutes.

Return the steak to the pan and toss to coat with the sauce. Garnish with green onions and serve right away.

Variation: This recipe also works for boneless, skinless chicken thighs or pork sirloin steaks, cut into narrow strips.

Nutrition information per serving:

Calories 450 Fat 25 g Sodium 1,820 mg

Carbohydrates 21 g Saturated fat 8 g Total sugars 18 g

Protein 35 g Cholesterol 95 mg Dietary fiber 1 g

Exchanges per serving: 1 ½ carb, 5 medium-fat protein.

 

Vegetable Paella

Serves 4.

Note: From “Dinner for Everyone,” by Mark Bittman.

• Salt

• 8 oz. ripe tomatoes, chopped

• Pepper

• 4 tbsp. olive oil, or more as needed, divided

• 1 1/2 c. short-grain brown rice

• 1 onion, chopped

• 1 tbsp. chopped garlic

• 8 oz. green beans, cut into 1-in. pieces

• 1 red bell pepper, cored and sliced

• 1 small eggplant, chopped

• 1 tbsp. tomato paste

• 2 tsp. paprika

• Large pinch saffron threads

• 2 to 3 c. vegetable stock or water

• 1/4 c. chopped fresh parsley, for garnish

Directions

Heat the oven to 450 degrees. Bring a medium saucepan of water to a boil and salt it. Put the tomatoes in a medium bowl, sprinkle with salt and pepper, and drizzle them with 1 tablespoon olive oil; toss gently to coat.

When the water boils, stir in the rice and adjust the heat so that the water bubbles steadily. Cook, stirring once or twice, for 12 minutes, then drain thoroughly.

Put the remaining 3 tablespoons oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the onion and garlic, sprinkle with salt and pepper, and cook, stirring occasionally, until the onion softens, 3 to 5 minutes. Transfer to a bowl with a slotted spoon. Add the green beans, bell pepper and eggplant to the skillet, sprinkle with salt and pepper, and cook, stirring once in a while, until browned in spots but still crisp, 5 to 10 minutes; add more oil if the mixture looks too dry. Transfer to the bowl and toss to combine; taste and adjust the seasoning.

Add the rice to the pan and stir until shiny and toasted, about 1 minute. Add the tomato paste, paprika and saffron and stir until fragrant, about 1 minute more. Add 2 cups stock; stir gently to combine. The rice should be submerged by 1/2 inch; if not, add a little more liquid.

Scatter the browned vegetables on top, followed by the tomatoes; drizzle with any accumulated juices. Put the pan in the oven and cook, undisturbed, for 15 minutes. Check to see if the rice is dry and just tender. If not, return the pan to the oven for another 5 minutes. If the rice looks too dry at this point but still isn’t quite done, add a small amount of stock or water. When the rice is ready, turn off the oven and let it sit for at least 5 and up to 15 minutes. Garnish with the parsley and serve.

Nutrition information per serving:

Calories 500 Fat 17 g Sodium 970 mg

Carbohydrates 80 g Saturated fat 3 g Total sugars 11 g

Protein 10 g Cholesterol 0 mg Dietary fiber 11 g

Exchanges per serving: 2 vegetable, 4 carb, 1 lean protein, 3 fat.

 

Korean BBQ at Home

Makes 6 to 8 servings

Note: This requires a serious time commitment that includes multiple occasions of eight-hour or overnight refrigeration. To control flare-ups: Be vigilant so you char without burning. Prepare hot and cool sides of the fire, and turn the meat often, moving it to the cold side of the grates (or to the edges of the grill pan) if any fat drips down and ignites or the sweet marinades threaten to burn. Mirin is rice wine. You can substitute dry sherry. Or substitute dry white wine or rice vinegar; with either you will need 1/2 teaspoon sugar to 1 tablespoon of the liquid. Gochujang is a red chile paste. From “Dinner for Everyone,” by Mark Bittman.

• 1 lb. skinless pork belly

• 2 tbsp. chopped garlic, divided

• 2 tbsp. chopped fresh ginger, divided

• 1 Asian pear, peeled and grated

• 1 3/4 c. soy sauce, divided

• 4 tbsp. dark sesame oil, divided

• 3 to 5 lb. spareribs, cut into 1/2-in. slices across the bone (flanken style)

• 1 c. mirin (see Note)

• Salt and pepper

• 3 dates, pitted

• 1/2 c. gochujang (see Note)

• 1/4 c. toasted sesame seeds

• 2 tbsp. rice vinegar

• 1 tbsp. sugar

• 1 tbsp. vodka, optional

• 1/4 c. chopped green onions

Directions

Heat the oven to 300 degrees. Put the pork belly in an ovenproof skillet and roast, uncovered, until at least 1/4 inch of fat has accumulated in the skillet, 1 1/2 to 2 1/2 hours, depending on how fatty the belly is.

Meanwhile, whisk 1 tablespoon garlic, 1 tablespoon ginger, pear, 1/4 cup soy sauce and 1 tablespoon sesame oil in a large bowl. Add the spareribs and toss to coat. Cover the bowl and refrigerate for at least 8 hours or up to overnight.

Reserve the rendered fat for another use and let the pork belly cool slightly, then cut it into slices 1/4- to 1/2-inch thick. Whisk together 1 cup soy sauce and the mirin and sprinkle with salt and pepper in a medium bowl. Add the pork belly and toss to coat. Cover and refrigerate for at least 8 hours or up to overnight.

Prepare a gas or charcoal grill for direct and indirect cooking. Or heat a large grill pan over 2 burners until smoking hot.

To make the two sauces: Pour 1 cup boiling water over the dates. When they’re soft, chop them and add to a blender or food processor with the gochujang and 1 tablespoon sesame oil. Purée until smooth.

For the second sauce: Put the sesame seeds in a dry medium skillet over medium heat. Toast, shaking the pan occasionally, until they are golden and fragrant, 3 to 5 minutes. In a bowl, combine the remaining 1/2 cup soy sauce, the rice vinegar, remaining 2 tablespoons sesame oil, the sesame seeds, sugar, vodka or soju if using, 1 tablespoon garlic, remaining 1 tablespoon ginger and the green onions; whisk until the sugar dissolves.

To cook the meat: When the grill is ready, cook the meat: Let any excess marinade drip off the ribs, then put them directly over the heat. Cook, turning them as soon as they release easily, until both sides are charred and the meat is just barely cooked through, 4 to 5 minutes per side. Transfer to a plate and brush the grill grates. Shake off any excess marinade from the pork belly slices and put them directly over the heat. Cook, turning occasionally and transferring the pieces to the cool part of the grill during any flare-ups, until cooked through and the edges are charred, 10 to 20 minutes. (The exact time will depend on how often you have to move the belly.) Serve the meats hot, with both sauces for dipping.

Nutrition information per each of 8 servings:

Calories 630 Fat 46 g Sodium 2,080 mg

Carbohydrates 17 g Saturated fat 15 g Total sugars 10 g

Protein 35 g Cholesterol 130 mg Dietary fiber 2 g

Exchanges per serving: 1 carb, 5 high-fat protein, 1 fat.