Thursday, April 13, 2017

Friday recipe : cheeseburger macaroni

Better, cheaper. Faster.    Than in a box.    You still have to add the good stuff when you buy the box. Honestly, the box probably cost more than the ingredients.   My daughter and I dissected a box once.   It had 4.1 ounces of macaroni ( .25 at top dollar prices ) and 1.57 ounces including tare weight of a cheese sauce mix without any cheese.    You are better off making it yourself.

Homemade Cheeseburger  Macaroni

  • 1/2 pound cooked ground meat 
  • 1/2 lb of pasta of choice
  • Vegetables of choice cut small : carrot, celery, onion ( food processor or manual  chopper works well ) .  
  • 2  T olive oil ( or less of you have a non stick pan )
  • 1 can tomato sauce (8 oz) 
  • 1 can diced tomatoes ( 15.5 oz) 
  • Add 1/2 tsp garlic powder. 1 tsp dried parsley
  • 4 ounces of grated cheese : we use Mexican blend, (1cup) 
  • Put macaroni to cook following the directions on the package,   When cooked, drain.   
  • Sauté the chopped vegetables in a little olive oil.   
  • Add cooked hamburger.   
  • Add the tomatoes and tomato sauce.  
  • Add spices and simmer while pasta is cooking.  If the sauce s too thick, add water or pasta water to desired consistency,   It should have some liquid, but,NOT resemble soup.     
  • Add the pasta let simmer five minutes. 
  • Top with cheese  and cover with lid and remove from heat. 
  • When cheese has melted, stir and  serve.   
Cost 3.29.   Makes a meal for four people.   
You can use tomatoes with spices and omit the spices.   
Or add black olives sliced for Italian 
Or green chilies and sauté onions instead of the  veggies. 

Better : because it has no preservatives and adds veggies and has more macaroni.

Cheaper because at 3.29 for 4 servings, it cost little more  than the cost of one box and with the box you still have to add meat and other ingredients: scratch you have more real food .

Faster because you cook the pasta while the  other is simmering.  It can simmer on a very low heat and doesn't have to be babysat or you can make the sauce part in an insta pot or slow cooker and  add the pasta and cheese . 

In the insta pot : 
Sauté the veggies on the sauté setting,   When the veggies were soft, switch to the slow cooker setting and add the cooked hamburger, and sauce ingredients,   At dinner time I would cook the pasta the microwave so it didn't  have to be babysat , drain it when it was done and add the cheese and unplug the machine and add the cheese.  Stir.

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