Beef, Dinner, one pot meals

Stuffed Pepper Casserole

Okay, so we made stuffed peppers in the crockpot and they came out great. Now we have a one pot casserole based off the stuffed pepper that is just as good. As the weather is starting to turn colder, this is a hot and hearty one pot dinner.

I guess you could call it a deconstructed stuff pepper when you look at all the ingredients.

Ingredients

  • 1 lb ground beef
  • 1 green pepper diced
  • 1 red pepper diced
  • 1 medium onion diced
  • 1 tsp oregano
  • Salt & pepper
  • 3 cloves garlic minced
  • 2 cups beef broth
  • 1 15 oz can diced tomatoes
  • 1 8 oz can tomato sauce
  • 1 Tbs balsamic vinegar
  • 1 cup long grain white rice
  • 1-2 cups Colby Monterey Jack cheese

Instructions

  • In high sided pan combine ground beef, peppers, onion, oregano, salt and pepper and cook until beef is no longer pink and vegetables are tender.
  • Add in garlic and cook about 1 minutes.
  • Add beef broth, tomatoes, tomato sauce and balsamic vinegar, stir to combine then bring to a boil.
  • Add rice and stir to combine, cover and simmer for 20-25 minutes until rice is tender and juices are mainly soaked up.
  • Remove from heat and stir in 1 cup cheese.
  • Top with remaining cheese and place cover back on to melt.
  • Serve with chopped parsley if desired.

Enjoy!

Beef, Dinner

Comfort meal worth trying

When I think comfort two dishes come to mind..the first is mac and cheese and the second is meatloaf. Now hubby asked what would taste good that night for dinner as he was home early. Meatloaf can to mind instantly. This one is very moist and flavorful. Ree Drummond the Pioneer Woman has a delicious meat loaf wrapped with crisp bacon. How can you resist.
1 cup whole milk
6 slices white sandwich bread (the soft stuff!)
2 pounds ground beef
1 cup freshly grated Parmesan
1 teaspoon salt
Freshly ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon Cajun seasoning
1/4 to 1/2 cup minced flat-leaf parsley
4 eggs, beaten
8 to 12 thin bacon slices
3/4 cup ketchup
6 tablespoons brown sugar
1 teaspoon dry mustard
Several dashes hot sauce (more if you like)
Dash or two of Worcestershire sauce

  1. For the meatloaf: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Pour the milk over the bread and allow it to soak in for several minutes. Place the ground beef, milk-soaked bread, Parmesan, salt, some pepper, seasoned salt and parsley in a large mixing bowl. Pour in the eggs. With clean hands, mix the ingredients until well combined.
  3. Form the mixture into a loaf shape on a foil-lined broiler pan, which will allow the fat from the meat to drain.
  4. Lay the bacon slices over the top, tucking them underneath the meatloaf to give the meatloaf some support.
  5. Next, make the tomato sauce: Pour the ketchup into a bowl. Add the brown sugar and dry mustard, and splash in the hot sauce and Worcestershire sauce. Stir the mixture until well combined. Pour one-third of the sauce over the top of the meatloaf.
  6. Bake for 45 minutes, and then pour over another one-third of the remaining tomato sauce over the meatloaf. Bake for an additional 20 to 25 minutes; the meatloaf should be no longer pink in the middle. Allow to sit 10 minutes before serving.
  7. Serve with the remaining tomato sauce on the side as a dipping sauce.
Dinner

Crockpot Chili

This is a staple in our house.  We make this a few times during the cold winter months.  It is a tasty recipe that goes together pretty quickly.  Combine this with a salad and a slice of hearty bread for a simple dinner.  And for easy cleanup..use a Crockpot liner.  Greatest kitchen cleanup tool invented.

2 pounds lean ground beef
2 medium green bell peppers, chopped
2 small onions, chopped
2 cans (15 oz. each) red kidney beans, undrained
2 packages (1.25 oz. each) chili seasoning mix
2 cans (15 oz. each) tomato sauce
2 cans (10 oz. each) diced tomatoes and green chilies
cheese and sour cream

Line a 5 – 6 quart slow cooker with a Slow Cooker Liner for easy cleanup. Fit liner snugly against bottom and sides of bowl; pull top of liner over rim. Set aside.

Brown ground beef, bell pepper and onion in a large skillet over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally, until beef is no longer pink. Drain well. Spoon beef mixture into the lined-slow cooker. Add beans, seasoning mix, tomato sauce, diced tomatoes and green chilies to beef mixture; stir gently with wooden or plastic spoon.

Cover and cook 6 to 7 hours on LOW OR 3 to 3 1/2 hours on HIGH, until hot and bubbly throughout.

Carefully remove lid to allow steam to escape. Stir gently using a wooden or plastic utensil. Serve food directly from lined slow cooker. Top with cheese and sour cream, if desired. Remove all food and cool slow cooker completely before lifting liner from slow cooker. Do not lift or transport liner with food inside.

Dinner

Goulash!

When someone mentions comfort food people think meatloaf or mac and cheese.  I dig back in my childhood memories and Goulash pops up.  My Dad was great at throwing things together and creating a tasty meal or soup.  When I was little 9 up to about 12 years old) my parents ran a small town diner and Dad manned the kitchen.  Dinners were generally from the diner and generally prepared quickly and pretty hearty.  None of my Dad’s recipes were written down, so I like to try and recreate them from either memory or find something similar and close to it. This recipe was pretty close.  I lightened it up with a half ground beef, half ground turkey.  This is a good meal to make in a hurry because most of this is pretty much on hand pantry items.  With the snowstorm coming this might be a great meal to make.

Ingredients

2 onions chopped
1 pounds lean ground beef

1 pound ground turkey breast
2 cloves garlic minced
1 jar tomato based pasta sauce approx. 26 oz.
1 28  oz cans diced tomatoes, un-drained
1 can 6 oz tomato paste
1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
2 bay leaves
3 cups water
salt & black pepper to taste
2 cups macaroni noodles uncooked
1 cup cheddar cheese



Cook ground beef, onion and garlic over medium high heat until no pink remains. Drain any fat.
Add pasta sauce, diced tomatoes, tomato paste, water, seasonings and bay leaves. Simmer covered for 15 minutes.

Add in the in the macaroni and continue to simmer, covered, stirring occasionally until pasta is tender (about 20 minutes). Remove & discard bay leaves. Top with cheese and replace the lid. Let sit about 5 minutes or until melted.

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Ricotta Meatloaf and Peas with Pancetta

This recipe is a long time coming, but has not been forgotten.  I made this earlier in the spring and with all of our family activity it hadn’t been posted.  Lydia is a new favorite of ours. I will definitely try this again and make the peas more often.

Ingredients 

1 cup milk
3 cups day old bread cubes, from a loaf of country bread
3 pounds ground beef (freshly ground preferred)
3 large eggs, beaten with a pinch of salt
1 pound drained fresh ricotta (about 2 cups) plus more for the sauce if you like
1 bunch scallions, finely chopped (about 1 cup)
1/2 cup grated Grana Padano
1/4 cup chopped fresh Italian Parsley
1/2 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
1 tablespoon Kosher Salt
freshly ground black pepper to taste
1/2 pound fresh mozzarella, cut in 1/2-inch cubes (about 2 cups)
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
4 to 5 cups tomato sauce

Pour the milk over the bread cubes in a bowl, and let soak for a few minutes, until the bread is saturated. Squeeze the soft bread a handful at a time, pressing out as much milk as you can (discard the milk). Tear the bread into small shreds and toss back into the empty bowl. Crumble the ground beef into the bowl, and add the eggs, ricotta, scallions, grated cheese, parsley, nutmeg, salt, and pepper. Fold and toss everything together, and squeeze the mixture a few times between your fingers to distribute all the ingredients evenly. Scatter the mozzarella cubes on top, and fold and mush them throughout the loaf mix.

Brush the roasting pan with 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Gather the meat mixture in the bowl, turn it into the pan, and shape it into a fat oval loaf. Drizzle with the remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil. Cover the pan with foil—tent it so it doesn’t touch the meat—and bake 45 minutes. Remove the foil, and continue to bake until the meatloaf is browned all over and completely cooked through, another 1 hour and 30 minutes or so. (If you check the loaf with a meat thermometer, it should reach a temperature of 160 degrees.) Remove the roast from the oven, and let it rest for about 10 minutes.

Heat the tomato sauce to a simmer in a saucepan as the meat rests. Turn off the heat, and, if you like, stir 1/2 cup or so fresh ricotta into the sauce. Cut the loaf crosswise in the pan or on a cutting board, in slices as thick as you like.

Serve on warm dinner plates, topped with a spoonful or two of sauce, and pass more sauce at the table (or, for family-style serving, arrange the slices on a warm platter, topped with some of the sauce).

Peas and Pancetta 
3 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
3 ounces Pancetta, finely chopped
1 small onion, finely chopped
1 (1 pound) bag frozen peas, thawed
1/4 cup Pine Nuts, toasted
Directions
 In a large skillet over medium heat, add olive oil, pancetta and onion. Cook until pancetta is rendered, about 5 to 7 minutes.

 Add the peas. Cook, stirring occasionally, until onion and peas are tender and flavored with the pancetta. Stir in pine nuts. Cook and toss for a minute, then serve.

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Baked Ravioli Lasagna

How easy can this get!  4 ingredients, a little prep time, then 30 minutes in the oven. Plus this is perfect now that the weather is slowly beginning to change.  Think if it as a little bit of comfort food when you don’t have the time to make real lasagna from scratch.  We are making this extra special by using one of our favorite sauces from a little restaurant that recently closed.  Canale’s traditional sauce is my hubby favorite and we stocked up before they closed their local restaurant.  They still have the original restaurant but that is about 45 minutes away from our house.  It is good thing though that we can get the sauce at the local grocery store.  
So, give this a try and let me know what you think.  

Easy Ravioli Lasagna

1 – 25 oz package frozen cheese ravioli
1 lb cooked ground beef
4 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
1 quart or 32 oz tomato sauce

Preheat oven to 350. Spray 9″x 13″ baking pan with non stick cooking spray. Pour a thin layer of sauce on the bottom of the pan. Layer with half ravioli. Pour 1/2 of the remaining sauce over mixture and 1 cup of cheese. Add half the cooked beef.  Layer remaining ravioli on top of sauce. Layer 1 1/2 cups cheese, top with cooked beef and remaining sauce. Add remaining 1 1/2 cup cheese to top of casserole.

Bake at 350 for 30 minutes.  Top with a little fresh basil.
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Crockpot Pizza

Spring has been very busy with late baseball practices or games, and when you get home after 7:30 or so you really don’t want to cook. Takeout or fast food for us is not really on our menu.  And we like to sit down as a family and enjoy a meal together.  So crock pot meals are our go too.  Especially ones that don’t take too long to cook.  this recipe has been around for a few years and we have tweaked it lately with using Italian Sausage and adding green pepper.  This is adapted from Taste of Home Slow Cooker Meals.

Ingredients

1 package (16 ounces) wide egg noodles
1-1/2 pounds ground sausage or ground beef
1/4 cup chopped onion
1/4 cup chopped green pepper
1 jar (26 ounces) spaghetti sauce
1 jar (4-1/2 ounces) sliced mushrooms, drained
1-1/2 teaspoons Italian seasoning
1 package (3-1/2 ounces) sliced pepperoni, halved
3 cups (12 ounces) shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese
3 cups (12 ounces) shredded cheddar cheese

Directions

Cook noodles according to package directions. Meanwhile, in a large skillet, cook beef, pepper and onion over medium heat until meat is no longer pink; drain. Stir in the spaghetti sauce, mushrooms and Italian seasoning. Drain noodles. 

In a 5-qt. slow cooker coated with cooking spray, spread a third of the meat sauce. Cover with a third of the noodles and pepperoni. Sprinkle with a third of the cheese. Repeat layers twice. Press down to compact.
Cover and cook on low for 2-3 hours or until heated through and cheese is melted. Yield: 6-8 servings.