RECIPES: Chef Matthew Grunwald prepares heart healthy recipes

Chef Matthew Grunwald's Restaurant Quality Southwestern Braised Beef Tacos at Home


6 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
5 Tbsp kosher salt and more to season to taste
2 Tbsp fresh ground black pepper
3 pounds Top Blade Roast
1 large yellow onion, sliced
7 cloves garlic, minced
2 Tbsp all-purpose flour
1 cup red wine
2 quarts beef stock
4 roasted Anaheim chilies, peeled, seeded  
2 bay leaves
6 sprigs thyme
1 sprig rosemary
8 yellow corn tortillas
1 cup queso fresco
2 avocados, pit removed, sliced
2 roasted red peppers, sliced

½ crème fraiche
1 chipotle in adobo sauce, minced
1 tsp freshly squeezed lime juice
1 tsp kosher salt


For the meat:

Heat a large skillet to medium high heat.  While the pan is coming to heat, pat the top blade dry with a paper towel and season liberally with salt and pepper.  Add the oil into the pan and sear the meat by placing it into the pan and not moving it. Sear the meat on each of its sides for 3-4 minutes. You should have a very deep, brown sear.  Transfer the meat to a 6 quart crock pot when fully browned.  

In the same pan, reduce the heat to medium and add in the onions. Cook the onions for 4 minutes until golden brown, stirring occasionally.  Add in the garlic and cook 10 seconds!  Sprinkle the flour in the pan and cook 30 seconds, scraping up all of the brown bits on the bottom. Add in the wine and scrape the bottom of the pan.  Transfer all of the ingredients to the crock pot.  

Add the beef stock, Anaheim chilies, bay leaves, thyme and rosemary to the crock pot. Set the crock pot to medium high heat and let cook for 4-5 hours until the meat is fork tender.  

When finished cooking, removed the bay leaves and herbs from the crock pot. Using two forks, shred the meat in the crock pot with all of the natural juices.

For the Sauce:

Combine the crème fraiche, chipotle in adobo, lime juice and salt in a small bowl and stir until fully incorporated.  Serve chilled.    

To serve:

Heat a grill pan to high heat.  Grill the corn tortillas on each side for 30 seconds to get grill marks.  Fill each tortilla with the braised meat, queso fresco, avocado and roasted red pepper.  Top each with the sauce.   

Chef Matthew Grunwald's Southwestern Kale, Asparagus and Fennel Salad

Salad Components

3 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
2 Tsp kosher salt
Fresh ground black pepper to taste
2 ears corn, kernels removed
5 sprigs asparagus, stems removed, cut into ½ inch pieces
1 yellow squash, cut at a bias ¼'' thick
1 bulb fennel, thinly sliced   
1 head kale, stems removed, chopped
1 cup sun dried tomatoes, chopped
1 cup cotija cheese or feta

Heat a cast iron skillet to medium high heat and add in the olive oil. Add in the corn and cook for 45 seconds a this heat. Stir and reduce the heat to medium. Add in the asparagus and cook for 1 minute. Add in the squash and the fennel and cook 1-2 additional minutes until all of the vegetables are slightly soft with bit of crunch. Remove the cooked vegetables from the pan and transfer to a bowl with the kale, sun dried tomatoes and cotija cheese. The hot vegetables will begin to slightly wilt the kale. Let sit while making the vinaigrette.


¼ cup white balsamic vinegar
1 Tsp kosher salt
Fresh ground black pepper to taste
½ small shallot, minced
1 Tsp local desert honey
2 Tsp Dijon mustard
¾ cup extra-virgin olive oil (low acidity olive oil b/c it is less bitter)  
1 Tsp fresh chopped thyme
1 Tbsp parsley, chopped
5 Tbsp chives, minced

Combine the white balsamic, salt, pepper, shallot, honey and mustard in a bowl and whisk together.  Stream the olive oil into the bowl while whisking to create an emulsion.  Add in the thyme and parsley and stir to incorporate.  Dress the salad.  

Chef Matthew Grunwald's French Lentil Summer Salad


3 cups French Lentils
3 Tbsp Extra-Virgin Olive Oil
1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breast
1 Tsp kosher salt
1 Tsp fresh ground black pepper
1 cup peppadew peppers, chopped
1 seedless cucumber, small diced
1 roasted red pepper, chopped
1/2 bunch parsley, chopped
5 sprigs thyme, leaves removed, chopped
1/2 cup kalamata olives, halved
2 heirloom tomatoes, sliced

Peppadew Peppers Vinaigrette

1/4 cup white balsamic vinegar
1/2 clove garlic, peeled, minced
2 Tsp kosher salt
1 cup Extra-Virgin Olive Oil


Heat a large pot of water to a boil. Add the French Lentils to the water and let cook for 12-14 minutes or until al dente. Drain the French Lentils through a colander and lay out on a baking sheet to cool.

Heat a sauté pan to medium- high heat and add in the Extra-Virgin Olive Oil. Season the chicken breast with the salt and pepper and when the oil starts to smoke add in the chicken. Reduce the heat to medium and sear the chicken on both sides for 5 minutes until the internal temperature reads 165 degrees F with a meat thermometer. Remove the chicken from the pan and let rest. When the chicken is cool shred and set aside.

To compose the salad combine the peppadew

peppers, cucumbers, roasted red pepper, parsley, thyme, olives and tomatoes with the French lentils and the shredded chicken. Set aside to make the vinaigrette.

To make the vinaigrette, combine the white balsamic vinegar, garlic, salt and pepper together in a bowl and whisk together. Toss with the salad when ready to serve.


To get in touch: mailto: twitter: ChefMatthewG Facebook: Chef Matthew Grunwald

Print this article Back to Top