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Fire up a manly meal. Renee Comet/ USA WEEKEND. Food styling /Lisa Cherkasky.

Fire up a manly meal

Dad will love these entrees, sides and desserts - all for the grill.


Arguably, there is no manlier food than a steak cooked over an open fire, which is probably why Fatherís Day celebrations nearly always involve grilled meat. With these satisfying steak tacos, you can indulge Dadís carnivorous appetite, but do it in a healthier, festive way.

Starting with a lean-yet-tender cut of meat is key. I use sirloin here, but a ranch, strip or flatiron steak would also work well. Rubbing the steak with chili powder and spices before cooking ensures big flavor in each bite without added calories.

Finally, slicing it thin and serving it on a warm whole-grain tortilla piled with cabbage, cilantro and Cucumber-Avocado Salsa means you get a satisfying plate of food, but ultimately keep meat portions to a sensible size.

You can serve these mouthwatering tacos already composed on the plate, or let everyone build their own. However you slice it, itís the perfect meal to honor Dad.

Sizzling Steak Tacos with Cucumber-Avocado Salsa

• 1 Tb. chili powder
• 2 cloves garlic, minced
• ľ tsp. ground cinnamon
• ľ tsp. salt
• Pinch of cayenne pepper
• 1ľ pounds top sirloin steaks
• 12 corn tortillas, 6-inch diameter
• 3 cups shredded red cabbage
• Ĺ cup chopped fresh cilantro
• 1 lime cut into wedges
• Cucumber-Avocado Salsa (below)

Preheat the grill. (Or coat a large non-stick skillet with cooking spray and preheat it over medium-high heat.)

In a small bowl, stir together the chili powder, garlic, cinnamon, salt and cayenne. Rub the spice mixture into both sides of the steaks.

Cook the steaks on the grill (or skillet) for 5 minutes per side, turning once for medium rare or to desired doneness. Remove from heat; let the meat sit for 5 minutes. Carve into thin slices.

Warm tortillas by placing them on the grill (or skillet) for about 30 seconds, turning once. Wrap in a cloth napkin to keep warm.

Place the carved steak, tortillas, cabbage, cilantro, lime wedges and salsa in dishes and let diners make their own tacos.

Yield: 6 servings

Per serving (2 tacos, 1/3 cup salsa): 410 calories, 42g carbohydrates, 21g protein, 18g fat (4g saturated), 8g fiber, 46mg cholesterol, 250mg sodium

Cucumber-Avocado Salsa

• 1 medium English cucumber, seeded and diced (about 2 cups)
• 2 medium firm-ripe avocados, diced
• Ĺ red onion, diced
• Juice of 2 limes (about ľ cup)
• Salt to taste
• ľ cup chopped fresh cilantro
• 3 jalapeŮo peppers, seeded and finely chopped

Combine all ingredients in a medium bowl and toss gently to combine. Serve within an hour of preparing.

Yield: 6 servings

Per serving (1/3 cup salsa): 111 calories, 8g carbohydrates, 1.5g protein, 9g fat (1g saturated), 8g fiber, 0mg cholesterol, 6.5mg sodium

Recipe reprinted by permission of the publisher, The Taunton Press Inc., from The Food You Crave: Luscious Recipes for a Healthy Life, by Ellie Krieger. Copyright by Ellie Krieger.

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Ellie Krieger is host of the The Food Networkís hit show ďHealthy Appetite,Ē which airs on The Cooking Channel. The author of three cookbooks, her latest is Comfort Food Fix: Feel Good Favorites Made Healthy. A registered dietitian, Ellie has helped out with First Lady Michelle Obamaís ďLetís MoveĒ campaign and has teamed up with New York City SchoolFood initiative, where she created healthy, delicious menu items for students citywide.