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Posts Tagged ‘beef’

We try to plan our menus for the week on Sundays.  This week my daughter asked for Spaghetti Bolognese.  I’m not sure where she had it before or heard of it but she wanted it.  Fine by me.  I looked up a few recipes and was dismayed to find that not only did they contain pancetta but that they also contained butter and cream.  Since we keep kosher that was a big problem.  Luckily I stumbled on a version that touted itself as the Perfect, Authentic Italian Bolognese Sauce.  That is quite a claim!  Not sure it if is the perfect sauce or not but it was s big hit at our house.

Ingredients:

  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • 6 or so slices pancetta (I used turkey bacon)
  • 2 large onions, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 2 carrots, chopped
  • stick of celery, chopped
  • 1 lb ground beef
  • 1 lb ground veal or lamb (I used sweet Italian Veal sausage that I took out of the casings)
  • 2 cans (400g) diced or chopped tomatoes
  • 2 large glasses Red Wine (nice precise measurement, maybe that is why I love this recipe! I used a Cabernet Sauvignon)
  • 2 bay leaves
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Pasta (enough for 4 people, cooked.  Recipe suggested tagliatelle, but we used spaghetti)

Directions:

  • Heat the oil in a large, heavy based saucepan and fry the bacon until golden brown over medium heat.
  • Add the onions and the garlic, sauteing until slightly browned and softened.
  • Increase the heat to high and add the ground beef. Saute until the beef is browned.  Remove from pan to a bowl.
  • Add the veal or lamb and saute until browned.
  • Add the onions, garlic and beef back to the pan.  Pour in the wine and boil until it has reduced in volume by about a third.
  • Reduce temperature to medium-low and add in the tomatoes, celery and carrot.
  • Allow to simmer for 1 – 1 1/2 hours until the sauce has reduced considerably.  Stirring now and then.
  • Pour sauce over the cooked pasta.  Enjoy!
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Pumpkin Mole Chili

No photo to go along with this.  Sorry.  Despite that it was delicious.  Inspiration found here at the BrokeAssGourmet.

Ingredients

  • 1 pound or so of ground beef.
  • 1 shallot, minced (didn’t have any onions, not sure how that happened)
  • 2 or 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 poblano pepper, chopped (remove seeds and membranes)
  • 2 carrots, peeled and chopped
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 cans (15 oz) diced tomatoes
  • 1 can (6 oz) tomato paste mixed with equal amount water
  • 2 cans (15 oz) beans (your choice – black, kidney, white)
  • ** Mexican Mole Seasoning blend (from Savory Spices) – to taste.  I think I ended up with about 1 – 2 tsp
  • Chili Powder  – to taste.  Start out with 1/2 tsp and work your way up.
  • 1 small pie pumpkin roasted and mashed OR 1 small can (15oz) pumpkin puree
  • 1 cup (+/- might need more, might need less) water
  • juice of one orange
  • Handful chopped cilantro

Directions

  • Heat olive oil in medium stockpot
  • Add shallots and garlic.  Cook until translucent and golden.
  • Add carrots and poblano pepper.  Cook until softened.
  • Add beef and cook until no longer pink.
  • At this point, add in the diced tomatoes, the tomato paste, the beans and the seasonings.  Salt to taste.  Let simmer about 30 – 45 minutes.
  • TASTE
  • Add pumpkin and orange juice.  Add some chopped cilantro.  If needed, add water
  • TASTE
  • Let cook another 15 minutes or so.  Stir now and then.  If too dry, add some water.
  • Taste and adjust seasonings.  

Serve with diced avocados and some corn chips over rice!

** If you don’t have Mole seasonings, you can substitute 1 – 2tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder.  Dark chocolate powder is better.

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Jeff’s mom gave me this recipe when we first got married because it is a family dish that Jeff adored as a child.  He still does as do the kids and I.  It is quick and easy to prepare.  I’ve made a few tweaks over the years.  Tonight I made it with ground lamb instead of ground beef because that’s what we had in the freezer but either works well.  Since our herb garden is producing nicely, I used a small handful of fresh oregano that I chopped and a child sized handful of fresh thyme as well.  The recipe doesn’t call for thyme but it was a spur of the moment addition and it worked well.

 

Ingredients

  • 1 lb. ground beef or ground lamb
  • 1 – 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 1 -2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 green pepper cut into a large dice
  • 1 red or yellow pepper cut into a large dice
  • 1 jalapeno pepper, diced. Remove seeds and membrane.
  • 1 tsp kosher salt
  • Pepper to taste
  • 1/2 tsp dried oregano
  • 1/4 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1 (10.5) ounce can tomato sauce
  • 1 (14.5) ounce can corn, drained
  • 1/2 cup black olives, cut in quarters (we had some fresh cured Italian olives in the fridge so we used them – HUGE difference for the better in the flavor but I did cut back on the salt that was used to compensate for the intrinsic brininess of the olives)
  • Extra wide egg noodles, cooked according to directions on the package.   (I used these noodles by Rozoni, the whole 12 oz bag)

Directions:

  • In a dutch oven or small stock pot, heat 1 – 2 tbsp olive oil.  Add the onions and garlic.  Cook, stirring frequently until slightly browned.
  • Add the jalapeno peppers, the green and yellow or red pepper.  Saute for 3 – 5 minutes until the peppers are softened.
  • Remove the pepper and onions from the pot and set aside.
  • In the same pot, add the ground beef or lamb, salt and pepper.
  • Brown the meat until it is no longer pink.
  • Add the peppers and onions back to the pot.  Stir in the corn, the crushed red pepper flakes and the oregano and thyme.
  • Add the tomato sauce.
  • Let simmer for 1o  – 15 minutes.
  • About 5 minutes before serving, add the olives.
  • Serve over the egg noodles.

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The other night as I was making up our weekly menu I went through my recipe file.  That behemoth box that was jam packed with recipes that I have collected by clipping them out of magazines or printing them off from the internet.  One of my goals while going through it was to whittle it down to keep only recipes that I thought I actually might make.  Little by little I am accomplishing that goal.  Also organizing it a bit better.   We are also trying to use the crockpot more so this one was a doubly good find!  See if you can find the surprise ingredient.

Ingredients

  • 1 pound boneless beef chuck
  • 2 – 3 cloves garlic (I didn’t have any so I used a tsp or so of granulated garlic instead)
  • 1 – 2 tsp cumin seeds (grind them yourself or use already ground, your choice)
  • 1  – 2 tsp paprika (I like paprika so I used more along the lines of 2 tsp)
  • 1 tsp coriander seeds (grind them yourself or use already ground, your choice)
  • 1/2 – 1 tsp Oregano
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 2 carrots, peeled and cut into 1 inch chunks
  • 1 can (15oz) tomato sauce
  • 1 butternut squash (about 1 lb) peeled, seeded and cut into 1 inch chunks
  • 1 can canned peas or 1 cup of frozen peas
  • 1/2 cup small, pimento stuffed green olives, cut in half
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro

Directions

If you have the time and inclination:

  • Brown the beef in a large skillet until seared on all sides.
  • You can also brown the onions if you are so inclined

If you are like me and are trying to do this at the crack of dawn before racing out the door to the bus stop and then to work start here:

  • Plug in the crock pot
  • Toss in the chopped onions, carrots, squash and beef.
  • Stir in all the spices except the fresh cilantro
  • Pour in the tomato sauce
  • Cook on LOW for 6 – 8 hours
  • About 15 minutes before it is going to be served or as soon as you get home:
  • add the peas, cilantro and the olives
  • Stir it all up and let cook another 15 minutes or so.

I served it over whole wheat couscous with a hunk of roasted garlic bread that Jeff picked up on the way home.  It was a hit – everyone decided it was a keeper and that the addition of the olives (the secret ingredient) was genius.  I loved the way it added a nice salty counterpart to the sweet squash.  If you wanted to you could also add a bit of chicken stock to the stew at the beginning.

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