Tag Archives: ground beef

Fast & Easy Taco Bake & A New Venture!

Hi everyone!

Just a quick side note. I am now writing food articles/recipes for www.examiner.com. I am in the West Palm Beach, FL edition under food and drink. I have only written one article so far so keep checking back or subscribe. Some of it will be the same as the blog but I am going to include past stuff as well as new. I am actually getting paid to do this, and while I won’t be quitting my job just yet, it will give me good experience. So check it out! My first article is at http://www.examiner.com/american-food-in-west-palm-beach/cooking-with-quinoa.

If you want to become a writer as well, click on this link. Referral Program Or when signing up put my name, Andrea Genua in as a referral! Thanks!

Now on to the recipe!

As usual when I get home from work these days it’s a scramble to get dinner ready. Sure it would be easier if I planned it out on the weekends but what fun is that? Since I no longer work at home the weekends are full of laundry, food shopping and errands. So cooking ahead of time never enters my mind. So last night when I got home I had defrosted nothing, of course. I heard someone earlier in the day talking about tacos and that sounded good! But I didn’t want to deal with the extra calories of the taco shells. So I defrosted some beef in the microwave and made this recipe instead. Instead of shells I put in a package of the tofu shirataki noodles. Never missed the shells! We pretty much finished the entire dish so I guess it was a hit! Easy and pretty fast considering I had nothing ready.

Ready for the oven!

 

 

INGREDIENTS:

1 pound lean ground beef

3/4 cup chopped onion

1 tablespoon chopped or minced garlic

3 tablespoons taco seasoning

1 can (approx. 15 oz) diced or chopped tomatoes with garlic/onion flavor

1 package Tofu Shirataki noodles, prepared according to package and cut into smaller pieces

1 cup 2% or fat-free shredded sharp cheddar cheese

light or fat-free sour cream

hot sauce as needed

Ready to eat, all bubbly and yummy!

 

 

DIRECTIONS:

1. Prepare noodles according to package directions and set aside.
2. Brown the ground beef and drain.
3. Add the onions and garlic, mix well and cook on medium-low heat for about 5 minutes. Stir occasionally.
4. Add the taco seasoning, mix well. Add the tomatoes, mix well and cook on medium heat for about 10 minutes, stirring every so often.
5. Add the noodles. Pour mixture into a round or square casserole dish and stir in ½ cup of the cheddar cheese. Top with remaining cheese.
6. Bake at 350º F for about 15-20 minutes, until cheese is bubbling.

Yum!

Serve hot! Add a dollop of sour cream if desired. Hot sauce can be added as needed.

Makes 4 servings

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Homemade Feasts For Your Pets!

Yes you read that correctly. Homemade food for your pets. I know there are many readers out there that have pets. I myself have two cats. Gus, our 8-year-old male orange tabby. He is named after John’s dad. Quite the ladies’ man, just like the original. He is also my little shadow. Though little is not how we’d describe him these days. He’s a solid 17 pounds. He’s not fat! He’s big-boned! He actually does not eat all that much but he doesn’t run around much either. Hates exercise, just like me! Gus is a Florida native. He found us when we lived in Lake Worth. Best thing he ever did! Our other cat is Toonces (aka The Driving Cat) who is a 10-year-old female calico. She is a Long Island cat, south shore. We brought her with us, as a kitten, from NY. She had a wonderful trip down too. We drove from NY in our Corolla and Toonces had the entire back seat and window ledge. Snuck her into motels on the trip. She loved it. And she actually LOVES car rides. No joke. Gus however, hates the car. Toonces is a svelte 10 pounds and still runs around like a little kitten, she loves exercise. Just like John.

The last few years we discovered that Gus had urinary issues. So we’ve changed his diet several times. But we wanted something both cats could eat. Have you ever tried to get two cats to eat two different foods? Doesn’t really work. Toonces actually always finishes her food first and then pushes Gus out-of-the-way and eats his! So both foods need to be the same. I now feed them all natural foods, no by products etc. But I’ve also been looking into making the food for them. Not all the time, I have a hard enough time feeding us humans! But every so often. This post will have a recipe for dogs as well as cats. So give it a try! Your pets will love you for it!

CAT RECIPE

INGREDIENTS:

1 cup water

1/3 cup dry rice

2 teaspoons corn oil

½ teaspoon iodized salt

2/3 cup ground meat (beef or chicken or turkey is good)

1 tablespoon bone meal

2 tablespoons cooked liver

DIRECTIONS:

1. Bring water to a boil, add rice, corn oil and salt. Simmer 20 minutes.

2. Cover the meat with bone meal and add liver to the rice mixture. Simmer 15 minutes.

3. Let cool and serve. Refrigerate or freeze leftovers.


DOG RECIPE

INGREDIENTS:

½ pound ground beef

1/3 cup grated cheddar cheese

1 carrot, finely chopped/grated

½ cup bread crumbs

1 egg, whisked

1 teaspoon tomato paste

DIRECTIONS:

1. Preheat oven to 350º.

2. Combine all ingredients in a bowl. Scoop out by the spoonful and roll into mini-size meatballs.

3. Place the meatballs on a cookie sheet. Bake 15-20 minutes. Store in the refrigerator.

Stroganoff Genua Style

I know I have already posted a beef stroganoff recipe but this is a different version of that recipe. Most stroganoff uses stew meat and heavy cream and noodles. Not this recipe. In my version I substitute lean ground beef for the stew meat, fat-free half and half instead of cream and my favorite low-calorie noodle, Tofu Shirataki Noodles! It sort of looks like hamburger helper but tastes so much better. It is easy and doesn’t take a very long time to cook. I’m always looking for ground beef recipes other than meatloaf and chili and I found one.

INGREDIENTS:

1 pound ground beef

1 medium onion, chopped

2-3 cloves garlic, chopped

1 -15 ounce can cream of mushroom soup (or fat-free)

1 package Tofu Shirataki Noodles (Fettucine style) (prepare as package directs)

2 French Onion Laughing Cow Light cheese wedges, cut up

¼ cup light or fat-free sour cream

¼-½ cup fat-free half and half, use as needed to thin the sauce a little.

3 tablespoons olive oil

1 teaspoon dried basil

1 teaspoon dried oregano

1 tablespoon dried parsley

salt and pepper to taste


DIRECTIONS:

1. In a large saucepan sauté the onions in olive oil till they start to soften. Add the garlic and continue to sauté till light brown. Remove onions and garlic from pan and set aside.

2. Add ground beef to same pan and cook until brown. Drain off excess fat. Return the onion and garlic to pan as well as the basil, oregano, and parsley. Stir thoroughly.

3. Stir in cream of mushroom soup and the Laughing Cow cheese. Stir till the cheese is melted.

4. Add the sour cream and stir till mixed in. Add ¼ cup of the half and half. If needed add more of the half and half until sauce is thinned a little. It shouldn’t be too thick.

5. Add the prepared noodles and stir in thoroughly. Add salt and pepper to taste.

Serves 2-4

Escarole & Little Meatball Soup (Minestra)

I love soup. Even in the hot weather of Florida soup is always a great dinner. This is a really simple soup. If you’re short on time you can always use pre-made frozen meatballs in this recipe but why would you? Freshly made are so much better. This recipe is a great comfort food dish. Make extra and freeze it!

INGREDIENTS:

1 head of escarole (about 1 pound)

6 quarts of chicken broth (homemade or store-bought is fine)

3 large carrots, chopped

8 ounces ditalini, tubetti, or spaghetti broken into bite-sized pieces

Freshly grated parmesan or romano cheese

For the Meatballs:

1 pound ground beef or veal

2 large eggs

½ cup finely minced onion

1 cup bread crumbs

1 cup freshly grated parmesan or romano cheese

1 teaspoon salt

freshly ground pepper to taste

DIRECTIONS:

1. Trim the escarole and discard any bruised leaves. Cut off the stem ends. Separate the leaves and wash well in cool water, especially the center of the leaves where the dirt collects. Stack the leaves and cut crosswise into 1″ strips. There should be about 4 cups.

2. In a large pot, combine the escarole, broth, and carrots. Bring to a simmer and cook until the escarole is almost tender, about 30 minutes.

3. While the escarole is cooking, mix together all the meatball ingredients. Shape the mixture into tiny meatballs, less than 1″ in diameter.

4. When the escarole is cooked, stir in the pasta and return the soup to simmer. Drop the meatballs into the soup. Cook over low heat, stirring gently, until the meatballs and pasta are cooked, about 20 minutes. Taste for seasoning, add salt and pepper if needed.

Serve hot with grated Parmesan.

Serves 6

Mom’s Old Style Lasagna

I was looking through all of my recipes trying to find one for today’s post and came across this recipe that was in my mother’s handwriting. It’s for an old style lasagna which is a little different from how I usually make it. I am adding it exactly as written by Mom. I’m hungry just reading it over! I love lasagna and I don’t get to eat it too often, too many calories! My sister makes an awesome one also, which I was able to have not that long ago. Too bad I’m on a diet now! Lasagna is one of those recipes that I’m sure everyone has had at least once in their life. It’s also one of those recipes that when it’s not made correctly it can be so disappointing! Ever had soupy lasagna? Dried out?  Over cooked? We all have! And no self-respecting Italian will buy frozen lasagna! It’s just wrong! There is nothing like home-made so give it a try soon. It’s not difficult, really! The hardest part is getting the cooked noodles out of the pan! And if that is going to be a problem for you cut them in half to handle easier. Food should be fun to prepare as well as eat so enjoy trying this recipe out! Remember I copied it exactly as she had written it so if you need to change it slightly please do.

INGREDIENTS:

1 pound Ronzoni lasagna (#123)

2 tablespoons olive oil

½ pound ground beef

½ pound ground pork

1 medium onion, minced

1 clove garlic, chopped

1 teaspoon minced parsley

1 ½ cans tomato paste (9 oz)

2 cups water

½ teaspoon salt

½ teaspoon pepper

5 quarts water

3 teaspoons salt

1 pound mozzarella cheese, sliced thin

¾ pound ricotta cheese

2 tablespoons grated Romano cheese


DIRECTIONS:

1. Brown beef and pork in large saucepan with oil, onion, garlic and parsley.

2. Add tomato paste, 2 cups water, salt and pepper. Simmer 1½ hours.

3. Bring 5 quarts water to boil, add salt and lasagna and cook for 20 minutes, or until tender, stirring almost constantly to prevent sticking.

4. Drain. Arrange lasagna in casserole dish in layers, alternating with layers of sauce, mozzarella and ricotta, until lasagna is all used and  ending in like sequence, ricotta last.

5. Sprinkle with grated cheese. Bake in 375º oven about 20 minutes, or until mozzarella is melted. Serve.


Makes 6 large servings or 8 medium servings.


Basic Meat Filling

This is the basic meat filling to use with the stuffed plantains. It can also be used with stuffed peppers, stuffed cabbage etc. The recipe calls for ground beef but you can also add ground sausage to the mix if you wish.

Ripe Plantain

INGREDIENTS:

1 pound lean ground beef (or ground pork)

3 chili peppers, finely chopped and seeded (any type of pepper you want is fine)

1 green pepper, finely chopped and seeded

1 medium onion, finely chopped

2 cloves garlic, chopped

1 teaspoon dried oregano

1 teaspoon salt

¼ teaspoon wine vinegar

6 green olives stuffed with pimentos

1 teaspoon capers

1 tablespoon vegetable or olive oil

hot sauce to taste

Stuffed Pepper

DIRECTIONS:

1. In a heavy pot, add 1 tablespoon oil and saute chili peppers, onion, green pepper and garlic for 10 minutes.

2. Add oregano, salt, vinegar and ground beef. Stir over high heat until meat loses its red color.

3. Turn heat to low. Add olives, capers and hot sauce. Mix and cook 30 minutes for beef or 1 hour for pork.

4. Let cool slightly so it won’t be too hot to handle when stuffing the plantains or other item.

Stuffed Cabbage

Meatloaf in the Round

One of the all time favorite comfort foods, meatloaf. I could make meatloaf every night for John and he’d be so happy! But after a while the same old loaf gets boring. So to change things up a bit I have made them in muffin tins or as today’s title says, “in the round”.  All I do is take a round casserole dish and invert a small bowl in the center and put the meatloaf mixture all around the small bowl. Ta da! Meatloaf in the round! Still tastes exactly the same just in a different shape! The muffin tin is great too because you get little mini meatloaf muffins, though the pan is a pain to clean so I don’t do that too often!

Meatloaf in the Round

Meatloaf in the Round

INGREDIENTS:

1 pound ground beef of choice

1 cup bread crumbs of choice (I like Italian Panko)

2 eggs

1 small onion or half of a large onion chopped

3 cloves garlic chopped

½ cup parmesan cheese of choice

¼ cup milk of choice

2 tablespoons dried parsley

1 tablespoon dried basil

Meatloaf Ingredients

1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce

few dashes Tabasco hot sauce, optional

tomato sauce or tomato paste for topping (optional)

DIRECTIONS:

1. Place all ingredients in a large bowl and mix till everything is evenly mixed in. Don’t over mix though.

Meatloaf Ingredients in Bowl

Meatloaf Ingredients in Bowl

2. Place small bowl upside down in center of round casserole dish. Place meatloaf mixture evenly around small bowl in casserole.

3. Bake at 350º for 30 minutes. Remove from oven and spread tomato sauce or tomato paste over top of meatloaf if you wish.

4. Return meatloaf to oven and continue to bake for 15 more minutes.

5. Let sit 5 minutes before serving so it can set up a bit.

6. Enjoy!

After 30 minutes at 350 degrees

Meatloaf after cutting

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