Makes: 4 Servings
1 lb sirloin steak or beef round, cut into 2-inch cubes
1 large zucchini, cut into
1/2-inch rounds Metal or wooden skewers
1/4 cup black-bean sauce
1 tbsp rice-wine vinegar
2 tsp sesame oil
1 tbsp sesame seeds
1 cup quick-cooking brown rice
1/2 cup minced red bell peppers
Salt and ground black pepper
Robin's Tip: If you're using wooden skewers, soak them in water for an hour first. This will prevent them from catching on fire while your food chars.
 Coat an indoor grill or stove-top grill pan with cooking spray and preheat to medium-high.
 Thread steak and zucchini on separate skewers. Set aside.
 In a small bowl, whisk together black-bean sauce, rice-wine vinegar, and sesame oil.
 Brush mixture all over beef and zucchini. Place skewers on hot grill. Grill skewers for 5 minutes, turning once during cooking.
 Sprinkle sesame seeds over skewers and grill 2 more minutes, until steak is cooked through and seeds are golden brown.
 Meanwhile, cook rice according to package directions, adding bell pepper at the beginning of cooking time. Season rice with salt and black pepper to taste.
 Serve the beef and zucchini skewers over rice. Pair the dish with a small mixed-greens salad topped with slivered almonds and a bit of your favorite dressing.
294 calories, 27 g protein, 17 g carbs, 2 g fiber, 12 g fat
[A] Microwaving meat for a minute before grilling helps cut down on heterocyclic amines (HAs), compounds created when foods cook over a flame. Some studies suggest too many HAs may fuel the growth of cancer. FYI: Drinking beer may limit HAs' damage.
[B] In addition to adding a bit of a bite to your meat, the acetic acid in vinegar prevents blood-sugar spikes after a meal, helping keep your energy level on an even keel.
[C] Brown rice and sesame seeds are both excellent sources of manganese, a mineral your body craves for energy production and top-flight control of your brain and central nervous system.
[D] Besides counting toward the five cups of veggies you need daily, leafy greens are a good source of fiber and lutein, a nutrient essential for healthy eyes. Studies show that adding more to your diet may repair vision loss as you get older.
[E] Almonds are bursting with the alpha-tocopherol form of vitamin E, a nutrient that sacrifices itself for the health of your cells. Of the eight types of vitamin E available, the alpha-tocopherol in food is the best: Your body absorbs it twice as well as its synthetic counterpart.