Steak That's Just as Good the Second Time Around
Having steak left over from dinner doesn't mean that you have to repeat the exact same dish the next night. You've got plenty of options for creating a new meal with leftover steak, and once you add these delicious, simple recipes to your dinner repertoire, you might start purposefully ensuring you have some leftovers. Using leftover steak makes it easy to limit your portions without sacrificing flavor and variety.
1) Steak Sandwich
With a few extra steps, a steak sandwich moves from the ordinary to the exceptional. Choose a crusty bun, butter it and toast it lightly under the broiler until the edges are just charred. Add the steak and a layer of herb and garlic Monterey Jack cheese and return the steak to the broiler just long enough for the cheese to begin melting. Top the sandwich with roasted red peppers and a few parsley leaves for a burst of flavors and textures.
2) Steak Salad Two Ways
Steak salad gives you a way to salvage every bit of meat. Take a classic steak-and-potatoes route with sturdy Romaine lettuce, roasted potato cubes, tomatoes and a classic Caesar dressing. Or opt for a taco salad with shredded lettuce and cabbage, salsa, and pinto beans topped with sour cream, chopped cilantro and crushed tortilla chips.
3) Steak Stir Fry
A little bit of steak goes a long way in a stir fry full of vegetables with a flavor-packed sauce. And don't worry if you don't own a wok; a large, 12-inch skillet will work fine. Use vegetables that go well with steak, like onions, snow peas, broccoli, red bell peppers and mushrooms. You can either make your own sauce with soy sauce, sesame oil, hot sauce and cornstarch, or buy a prepared sauce to bring all the elements together.
4) Beef Barley Soup
Make beef barley soup when you need a warm, hearty meal for a cold winter evening. Quick-cooking barley takes just 15 minutes to cook, but pearl barley, which takes about 45 minutes, has more fiber. With either barley, simply toss all the ingredients in the pot, saving the leftover steak to add just before serving. Use a good beef broth to boost the flavor of the soup and add cooked mushrooms, diced carrots, dried thyme, salt and ground black pepper. Finish the soup with chopped parsley and a tablespoon of vinegar to brighten the flavor.
5) Steak Pitas
A variation on steak sandwiches, leftover steak pita pockets offer a refreshing taste on a warm summer evening. Warm the pita pockets in the toaster or oven, and stuff them with the steak, thinly sliced onions and cucumbers, crumbled feta cheese, grated carrots or carrot slivers if you have them, and a few pieces of lettuce. Dress the pita generously with a vinaigrette made with red wine vinegar, olive oil, dried oregano and minced garlic.
Susan Lundman began writing about her love of cooking, ingredient choices, menu planning and healthy eating after working for 20 years on children's issues at a nonprofit organization. She has written about food online professionally for ten years on numerous websites, and has provided family and friends with homemade recipes and stories about culinary adventures. Lundman received her M.A. from Stanford University.