Tag Archive | Beef

Sweet and Sour Meatballs with Ultra Gel

In the last few days I’ve been going back through some of my Ultra Gel recipes looking for things I haven’t done in a while and I happened upon this sweet and sour meatballs recipe. I love this recipe. It’s a combination of Asian flavors with a bright burst of pineapple all wrapped around a meatball, with crunchy vegetables for contrast.

My mother and I first developed this recipe when I was competing in the 4-H Beef Ambassador contest (about a million years ago). We wanted a meatball which would hold together well, but have a simple flavor and texture. Ultra Gel provides this as well as keeping the meatball moist even after baking (and it freezes really well too). Then we wanted a simple sauce which wouldn’t have to be cooked twice. Again Ultra Gel solved our problem as we can create a stir together sauce at the desired thickness before baking it with the meatballs for full flavor.

You can get creative with this recipe and add other tropical fruit such as mangoes, or vegetables like baby corn or bamboo shoots. Get creative, and be sure to let us know what you try!


Sweet and Sour Meatballs with Ultra Gel


1 pound ground beef – a combination of ground beef and ground turkey is really good too

2 Tablespoons Ultra Gel

2 Tablespoons dried chopped onion

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/8 teaspoon pepper


1 (20 oz.) can pineapple chunks, drained (reserve juice)

1/4 cup brown sugar

2 Tablespoons soy sauce

2 Tablespoons vinegar

1/2 cup water

1 small can water chestnuts

4-6 Tablespoons Ultra Gel

1-2 green peppers, cut into chunks

Combine ingredients for meatballs gently.  DO NOT OVERMIX.  Shape into 1″ meatballs and bake in preheated oven at 400 degrees for 10-15 minutes until centers are no longer pink.  Remove meatballs to baking pan.

Meanwhile drain pineapple and set aside, reserving juice.  Combine reserved pineapple juice, sugar, soy sauce, vinegar and water in mixing bowl.  Add Ultra Gel gradually, stirring with a wire whisk.  Add green peppers, pineapple and water chestnuts.  Pour sauce over meatballs and bake for 20-30 minutes at 375 degrees until peppers are crisp-tender.

Serve over hot cooked rice.


Baked Stroganoff

Recently I found some really nice London Broil on sale and wanted one of those meals I could get going and not worry about for a while. I love a good stroganoff, particularly one with nice pieces of meat and mushrooms and this baked stroganoff is flavorful, easy and appeals to adults and kids.

We serve it up over rice or noodles with veggies on the side, and no one goes away hungry!


Baked Stroganoff

1-2 pounds london broil cut into 1 inch strips

3/4 cups flour+1 Tablespoon Ultra Gel

1 tsp salt

1/2 tsp pepper

1/2 tsp garlic powder

2-3 Tablespoons olive oil

2 cups beef broth

1/2 thinly sliced white onion

1 pound mushrooms, sliced

1 cup sour cream

2 Tablespoons Ultra Gel

Combine flour, salt, pepper and garlic in a large zip top bag. Add beef pieces and toss to coat. In a large cast iron skillet (Any heavy skillet, will do, but cast iron works particularly well), bring oil to medium high heat. Add beef pieces a few at a time, browning on all edges. Remove beef to a bowl. Deglaze the skillet with the beef broth. Add onion and mushrooms to broth and simmer for 2-3 minutes. Whisk in sour cream and Ultra Gel and bring to heat. Fold in beef pieces and salt and pepper to taste. Remove entire mixture into a 9×13 inch dripper pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 30-35 minutes until the meat is cooked through and the vegetables are completely tender. Serve over rice or noodles.

This recipe freezes well. Move to air tight containers and freeze for upto 3 months.

Cornaby’s Spicy Cooking Sauces

It seems like everywhere we look right now there’s someone promoting a new spicy sauce and then another one that’s hotter than the last! For me the burn your tongue off ghost pepper sauces don’t do much cause I’m a giant wimp. Not that I don’t like a sauce with a good kick, but there’s a difference between interesting kick and I’m on fire kick. This is where the Cornaby’s line of spicy sauces comes in!

Currently our spicy sauces come in three amazing flavors all based on combining the delicate sweet flavors of fruit with the heat and smoke of peppers. Any of these sauces makes a great grilling or dipping sauce and with a little creativity can be used to top wraps, burgers and even lightly drizzled on grilled vegetables or corn! Yummy!

Peach Habanero

So here’s the run down:

Raspberry Jalapeno:

Sweet Cornaby’s Raspberries combined with pickled jalapenos. Sweet and warm at the same time, with just enough kick to get your attention. Add 1-2 tablespoons to 1/2 cup mayonnaise and spread on hero sandwiches or burgers!

Raspberry Chipotle:

Sweet Cornaby’s Raspberries combined with fiery smoked chipotle. Hotter than the jalpeno with a smoky effect. This is fantastic on robust meats like pork or beef!

Peach Habenero:

Delicate local Utah Peaches combined with spicy fresh habenaros. This one is surprisingly refreshing and the hottest that we make. Add a tablespoon to a bowl of coleslaw and just count the fans!

Soon we’ll have a Strawberry Serano, but that’s still in the works!

So you tell me. What would you put a spicy cooking sauce on and find Cornaby’s cooking sauces at your local Associated Food stores or at www.cornabys.com.

Using Ultra Gel in Marinades and Rubs

I don’t know about you, but around here we’re firmly in the middle of grilling season. I love this time of year when we start seeing wonderful fresh vegetables and have a chance to move the cooking outside and keep my kitchen cool!

One of the things I hear from people a lot when it comes to grilling is questions about improving marinades and rubs that can be used on various meats and veggies before putting them to the heat. This is another one of those odd places where Ultra Gel rides to the rescue, let me explain.

Marinades. A marinade is a sauce usually containing oil, an acid, spice and herbs that meat or large pieces of fruit or vegetable are soaked in before cooking. There are two big keys to a great marinade. The first is the balance of flavors, enough acid, enough oil and the right herbs and spices. The second is getting as much contact with the food as possible. This is where Ultra Gel and good ziptop bags come in. Adding a little Ultra Gel, about 1 Tbl per cup of marinade, thickens the marinade just a little and creates an emulsification which holds the spices in solution instead of just having them drop to the bottom of the bag. This thickness and emulsification helps to make the marinade stick to the meat or veg and gives you superior flavor and results! Give it a try with your favorite mix. You can even just add a little Ultra Gel to a store purchased marinade.

Rubs. A rub is a combination of salt, spices and dried herbs which is applied to meats and vegetables before grilling. Sometimes the dish is allowed to sit after receiving the rub as the salt helps to get enzymes in the meat going, sometimes it’s a sprinkle and grill thing. This is another place where Ultra Gel steps in to keep your rub from clumping, naturally, and to keep the rub sticking to the surface of your meat or veg enhancing the flavors. I use about 1 tsp of Ultra Gel per cup of rub and just stir it in well.

One other suggestion when it comes to your grilling. Take a look at Cornaby’s Cooking Sauces! Available in Raspberry Jalapeno, Raspberry Chipotle and Peach Habenero these sauce are great as part of a marinade, as a basting sauce, or a pour on after your meal has left the grill. As well serve up any of these sauces over a block of cream cheese with chips or crackers and you’ve got a party with pop!

So what grilling is happening at your house?  Inquiring minds want to know!

Oh! And check out our Bavarian Cream contest on Facebook!

Labor Day Love – Cornaby’s Cooking Sauces

Just a quick drive by post as we’re happily spending our Labor Day making ribs and enjoying some family time.  There was laboring this morning too which lead to curtains in the right place and a bunch of dishes done, YAY.

Anyway…as you head into your grill-a-thon remember that Cornaby’s Cookine Sauces, like Raspberry Jalapeno, Raspberry Chipotle and Peach Habenero are the awesome on ribs, steaks, chicken, fish and even as a vinaigrette base for a salad.  This has been a shameless plug and now we’re off to eat!

Have a great holiday!

Peach Habanero

Quick Beef and Broccoli

One of my favorite Chinese dishes is Beef and Broccoli.  I don’t know what it is about it, but something about the combination just tickles my tongue.  One of the nice things about making it yourself is the ability to adjust the spices and also to stay away from too much sodium or MSG (boo, hiss to the MSG.  Dumb stuff gives me migraines).

This particular recipe only takes about 15-20 minutes to make start to finish and is a good way to use small steaks or precut beef.  I use Thick Gel as my thickening agent for this recipe as it’s going to be heated anyway and I like the smooth texture.  Not to mention it means any leftovers will still be delicious tomorrow for breakfast!

Quick Beef and Broccoli

1 lb beef strips

4 cups broccoli florets

1 small white onion, frenched

1/2 tsp garlic powder

1 Tbl Thick Gel

2 Tbl water

3 Tbl olive oil, divided (We use an Asian version of our Herb oils)

1/3 cup low sodium soy sauce

2 Tbl brown sugar

2 tsp ginger

1/4 tsp red pepper flakes

2 Tbl Thick Gel

salt and pepper

In a small bowl combine garlic powder, 1 Tbl Thick Gel and water and mix well.  Add beef strips and toss to coat.  Heat 2 Tbl oil in cast iron skillet or wok.  Add beef and stir fry until desired doneness is reached, set aside and keep warm.  Add remaining oil and vegetables and stir fry until done.  If the broccoli pieces are large this may require a little steaming to get them done through.  In a small bowl combine soy sauce, Thick Gel and spices.  Add soy sauce mixture and meat back to the vegetables and cook until well combined and sauce is thick.  Serve immediately over hot rice.

Tarragon Beef

One of the things we enjoy getting from Bountiful Baskets is their Herb Pack.  I’ve talked about this before when we were making herb oils and butters, but despite these great uses there have been times where we’ve had more herbage (yes, that’s a word even if I made it up) than we could use through.  Recently we got another pack and I’ve made it my goal to look for recipes which use the fresh herbs so we can use them all before anything goes bad.  This is what lead me to my Tarragon Beef recipe, which was yummy…

The base for this is just a couple of thin beef steaks, in my case I used a couple of cube steaks I had in the freezer.  We’ve been working hard to avoid too many white starches, so we served up with steamed broccoli and some baked brown rice. The Ultra Gel replaces cornstarch which is often used in this kind of application and makes it so that we don’t have to keep the sauce at a boil which breaks down the veg too much for my taste. It made a nice total meal with a peppery tang from the tarragon.  We’d eat it again.

Tarragon Beef

Tarragon Beef

1-2 Tbl olive oil (I used our herb oil)

2 4 ounce beef steaks

1/4 cup red wine

1/4 cup beef stock (Homemade gives an awesome depth to the dish)

1/4 cup water

2 teaspoons fresh tarragon, chopped

1 teaspoon fresh chives, chopped

salt and pepper to taste

4 ounce sliced button mushrooms

1/2 medium yellow onion, sliced

1-2 Tbl Ultra Gel

Season steaks on both sides with salt and pepper.  Heat a cast iron skillet and add the oil, giving it just long enough to come to temperature.  Add steaks and cook for 2-3 minutes per side.  Remove from pan and hold in a warm oven.  Deglaze pan with red wine (I just use a cooking wine), beef stock and water.  Add spices, mushrooms and onions and cook until the mushrooms and onions are soft.  Add salt and pepper to taste and thicken with Ultra Gel.  Serve sauce over beef with rice or potato.