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Reduce Calories in Stews

January 23, 1986

Homemade soups and stews are wonderful as entrees and accompaniments, but some recipes for these warming favorites are guilty of adding extra fat and calories to menus. To reduce the caloric content, chill homemade broth, soups and stews so that the fat rises to the top of the dish. When the fat hardens, lift it off for a delicious low-cal dish.

Here are soup and stew recipes that get their flavor from beef. For Light and Hearty Beef Soup, slice 1 pound beef flank steak across the grain. Heat 1 quart beef broth in wok or large saucepan until boiling. Add beef, 1 (5-ounce) can bamboo shoots, 1 (10-ounce) package frozen broccoli or Chinese pea pods, 1/4 pound mushrooms, sliced, 3-ounce Japanese-style ramen or somen noodles and 1/3 cup teriyaki sauce. Cover and simmer over medium heat 5 minutes or until beef and noodles are tender. Makes 4 servings.

Cut 1 1/2 pounds boneless beef round steak into 1-inch cubes and set aside for Spring Stew. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in Dutch oven until hot. Then, saute 3 tablespoons chopped shallots, 1 sliced carrot, 1 sliced leek (including top) in oil until vegetables are tender. Add reserved beef, 1 (14-ounce) can Italian-style tomatoes, coarsely chopped, 1/2 teaspoon salt, 1/4 teaspoon marjoram and black pepper to taste to pan. Heat to boiling, then reduce heat and simmer, covered, until beef is tender, about 1 1/2 hours. (Add water as needed.) Stir in 1 (10-ounce) package frozen peas, thawed, and 1/4 cup chopped parsley, and simmer 5 minutes longer or until peas are heated through. Makes 6 servings.

For Beef and Vegetable Stew, cut 2 pounds boneless beef round steak into 1-inch cubes. Heat 1 (28-ounce) can Italian-style tomatoes and 1 (14 1/2-ounce) can beef broth in Dutch oven until boiling. Add beef, 1 sliced onion, 3 sprigs parsley, 1 chopped clove garlic, 1/2 teaspoon thyme leaves, 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon black pepper. Heat to boiling, then reduce heat and simmer, covered, until beef is tender, about 1 1/2 hours. (Add water as needed.) Stir in 3 sliced carrots and 1 pound broccoli florets and simmer 5 minutes longer or until carrots and broccoli are tender-crisp. Makes 8 servings.

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