Beef up your recipes this spring

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Whether it’s dressed up or dressed down, beef makes a good meal. Try these delicious entrees from the Virginia Beef Industry Council.

Olympian Burgers

¼ cup lowfat or regular plain Greek-style yogurt ½ cup olive tapenade, divided
1 pound lean ground beef
ground black pepper to taste
1 small sweet onion, thinly sliced
1 small zucchini, thinly sliced
salt to taste
¼ cup crumbled feta cheese
4 whole-grain toasted hamburger buns
fresh spinach leaves 


In a small bowl, combine yogurt and ¼ cup of the tapenade. Cover, and refrigerate until ready to use. In a large bowl, combine the ground beef and remaining ¼ cup tapenade, mixing thoroughly. Lightly shape into four ½˝-thick patties.

Heat a grill pan over medium heat until hot. Place the patties in the pan, and cook for 10-12 minutes, turning occasionally, until an instant-read thermometer inserted horizontally into the center registers 160°. Season with pepper. Remove from pan, and keep warm.

Add the onion and zucchini to the pan, cooking over medium heat. Season with salt and pepper. Cook 
5-6 minutes or until lightly browned and crisp-tender.

Place 1 tablespoon of feta on the bottom of each bun; top evenly with spinach leaves, onion, burger and zucchini. Spread 2 tablespoons of the yogurt mixture on the inside of each bun top. Close sandwiches. Serves 4.

Saucy Beef Wraps

1 pound lean ground beef 
⅓ cup chopped onion
¼ cup chopped green bell pepper
1 to 2 cloves garlic, minced
¾ cup water
⅓ cup tomato paste
2 tablespoons packed brown sugar
1 tablespoon white vinegar
½ teaspoon chili powder
¼ teaspoon salt
1 cup fresh baby spinach
⅓ cup canned black beans, rinsed and drained
¼ cup shredded carrots
4 medium flour tortillas (8-9˝ in diameter), warmed

In a large nonstick skillet over medium heat, brown ground beef with the onion, bell pepper and garlic for 8-10 minutes, breaking the beef into ½˝ crumbles. Pour off drippings if necessary.

Stir in water, tomato paste, brown sugar, vinegar, chili powder and salt; bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer 
5 minutes or until slightly thickened. Add spinach, beans and carrots; continue simmering 3-4 minutes or until heated through.

Spoon the filling evenly in a row across the center of each tortilla, leaving a 1½˝ border on the right and left sides. Fold the right and left sides of each tortilla over the filling. Fold the bottom edge up over the filling, and roll up. Serves 4.


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