I have been waiting all summer to share this recipe – Beef, Veggie & Watermelon Stir-Fry! –It’s steak “meats” watermelon (and loads of fresh veggies) atop of a plate of slightly chewy, insanely satisfying udon noodles. Earlier this year, the Texas Beef Council asked me to come up with my personal take on a Texas food tradition. “Focus on pasta,” they said, and “make it your own.”
Most of us know by now what happens when I’ve been let off the proverbial leash like that – I can go a little wild. But, my creativity isn’t random; it makes sense – to me, anyway! My jam is merging together seemingly unlikely ingredients to make a beautiful recipe that not only comes together easily but also optimizes nourishment to support an active lifestyle.
You might be wondering how my Beef, Veggie & Watermelon Stir-Fry a Texas “thang” – there’s no BBQ sauce in sight! The Texas spirit is found in the local lean beef and farmer’s market produce sourced from these here Central Texas parts. It also has that far-out, Far East fusion flavor going on that’s so popular with some of the food trucks found down in the hip and happening parts of Austin that do their best to Keep Austin Weird. Heck, I do my best to Keep Austin Weird!
I’m especially excited how this fit and fresh dish pairs up BEEF with WATERMELON as these are two of my all-time favorite foods ever in the history of all time, period.
This 30 minute dinner recipe features Top Sirloin, a super-lean cut of beef that has only about 5g fat and 150 calories per 3-ounce serving (along with about 26g protein)! Eating a protein portion approximately this size (25 – 30g), three to five times a day, gives me the power to feel fuller longer, stay active longer, and maintain a leaner muscle-to-fat body ratio. Of course, my meals aren’t always beef (variety is the spice of life, ya know), but lean beef is an AWESOME, nutrient-dense (think ZIP: Zinc, Iron, Protein) go-to choice that works beautifully in my life several times per week (or more).
What about the watermelon? Well, first off – it just screams summer in Central Texas. I can’t think of a picnic, river tubing trip or day at the lake spent without sharing a huge watermelon with family and friends. If you’ve not ever tried watermelon warm and spiced up a bit, get ready to live on the wedge! The sweet heat flavor is fantastic and the high water content of this juicy fruit (92% water) helps keep you hydrated on most blazing hot days. Plus, watermelon is low in calories and a great source of electrolytes and antioxidants that help support my lifestyle as an athlete. Oh, and you’re going to LOVE the sprouted watermelon seeds sprinkled on the to — despite what your mama may have said, you CAN eat watermelon seeds (they’re very nutritious)!
Note on the noodles: You don’t necessarily have to use the Udon noodles, I like to incorporate them when I need a little more carb energy in my life for long runs and endurance events. A great gluten-free option would be Soba noodles (made of buckwheat which is gluten free) or rice noodles . . . or just rice. I’m also going to make this dish in the future and try it totally grain-free by using spiralized zucchini or summer squash!
What have you been stir-frying lately? Favorite Fruit? Favorite type of Squat? Noodles, rice or nothing? Please share in the comments – XOXO, Jennifer
This post was sponsored by The Texas Beef Council and the Beef Check Off, however all opinions, comments, enthusiasm and weirdness are my own.