Monday, March 15, 2010

Not Hamburger Helper

I suppose every cook has a version of the ground beef, tomato sauce, macaroni skillet dinner my Mother called Goulash, so I do too. A while back, as a co-worker and I were having lunch in our break room, I was enjoying leftover Goulash and she was having a good looking sandwich. A second co-worker came in, remarked about how good it smelled in the room, came over to check out what we were eating, and remarked, "Oh. Hamburger Helper". So there is even that version!

This is a great dish for using up bits of cheese and vegetables in your refrigerator. This is what I found and used this time and the method is always the same. There is no need to cook the pasta in a separate pan, just make sure you include enough liquid for it to be able to cook, whether is is water, broth, or as I often use, tomato juice.

Family Goulash
1 Tbsp. olive oil
1 lb. ground sirloin
1 onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
3 carrots, sliced
Tender light green stalks, with leaves, from celery
1/2 package button mushrooms, chopped
3 - 4 hands full baby spinach leaves
1/2 cup chopped parsley
1 quart tomatoes
1/2 tsp. each oregano, basil, thyme
1/4 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes
Salt and pepper, to taste
8 oz. ziti
tomato juice
5 oz. (approx.) mixed cheeses, grated

Heat olive oil in large skillet, add ground beef and break up with a wooden spoon. Cook the ground beef until no longer pink then start adding the vegetables, as you chop them, stirring often. Cook until vegetables begin to get tender, then add tomatoes, herbs, red pepper flakes, and salt and pepper to taste. Simmer for a few minutes. Add uncooked ziti and enough liquid, in this case tomato juice, so that all pasta is submerged. Cover and cook until pasta is tender. Top with cheese and cover once again until the cheese melts.


3 comments:

  1. That looks wicked good. Heh, I make something very similar to this and actually call it "real" Hamburger Helper.

    ReplyDelete
  2. That looks wicked good. Heh, I make something very similar to this and actually call it "real" Hamburger Helper.

    ReplyDelete