Brenda Brookshire, of the Georgia CattleWomen's Association and the Georgia State Beef Council, hopes the National Beef Cook-off recipe contest will entice Georgians to cook with beef.
Just don't cook that beef for too long, she warns.
"The most common mistake people make is that they tend to overcook their meat," Brookshire said.
While ground beef needs to reach 160 degrees to cook off any bacteria that may have developed when the meat was ground, steaks don't need to cook to a particular temperature.
This year's contest keeps health in mind. The grand prize of $25,000 will go to the most delicious, convenient and healthy recipe. There are four categories.
Recipes must be submitted online at www.beefcookoff.org by April 15. Besides the cash prize, a trip to the Metropolitan Cooking & Entertaining Show in Washington, D.C.
The four recipe categories are:
Belt-Tightening Beef Recipes: Home cooks will create healthy and affordable beef recipes that are great values to prepare. Recipes should include a maximum of nine ingredients including beef, and flavorful, low-cost ingredients from the fruits or vegetables, grain products and dairy products food groups.
Semi-Homemade Beef Recipes: Home cooks will demonstrate how easy it is to cook with beef when they combine any fresh beef cut and fresh ingredients with prepackaged food products. Recipes should include a maximum of six ingredients including the beef, and fruits or vegetables, grain products and dairy products food groups, and be prepared and cooked in 30 minutes or less.
Real Worldly, Real Simple Beef & Potato Recipes: Home cooks will create original easy-to-make lean beef and fresh potato centered recipes that feature international flavors and maintain a healthy profile. Recipes should include no more than ten commonly available and affordable ingredients including the beef and potatoes, along with at least one other ingredient from the fruits or vegetables, grain products or dairy products food groups. Recipes should be prepared in no more than 15 minutes and cooked in 30 minutes.
Craveable Fresh Beef and Fresh California Avocado Recipes: Home cooks will produce easy recipes using all fresh ingredients, featuring one of the lean beef cuts and at least one fresh California avocado. Recipes should include no more than eight ingredients, including the beef and avocado, along with a least one other ingredient from the fruits or vegetables, grain products or dairy products food groups, and be prepared and cooked in 30 minutes or less.
All original recipes entered will be reviewed and judged based on taste, appearance, convenient preparation and cooking, and healthfulness and nutritional balance.
Mongolian Sloppy Joes
From Andria Gaskins, North Carolina
1 pound ground beef (90 percent lean)
1 medium onion
2 serrano peppers
3 tablespoons hoisin sauce
2 tablespoons oyster sauce
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1 tablespoon honey
Brown beef with onion and peppers in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat 8 to 10 minutes, breaking beef into 3/4 inch crumbles. Drain.
Stir in hoisin sauce, oyster sauce, soy sauce and honey. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat. Simmer for 5 minutes, stirring often. Place 1/2 cup beef mixture on bottom half of each bun. Close sandwiches. Serves 6.