What’s not to love about an easy recipe that is packed with macaroni, spiced beef sauce and two kinds of cheese? And did I mention that it can be made ahead for those busy nights?
Total comfort food. Adjust the spices and/or change the types of cheese to your liking. I liked the mild southwest slant that using some cumin and chili powder lent to the dish.
Here’s something I learned recently: Whole canned tomatoes tend to be of higher quality, and testers say are more fresh tasting, than crushed tomatoes. That’s why the recipe calls for using the whole tomatoes and then crushing them up yourself.
1 large onion, diced
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 pounds lean ground beef
1 (28-ounce) can whole tomatoes, processed until smooth in a blender
2 cloves garlic, chopped
Optional seasonings: oregano, cumin, chili powder (I used about a 1/2 tsp of each)
Salt and black pepper
1 pound macaroni
2 cups each grated cheddar and mozzarella cheeses
1. in a large skillet heat oil and cook onions until tender. Add the beef and stir to break up the meat as it cooks.
2. Stir in your seasonings of choice then add the tomatoes. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for an hour.
3. Cook the macaroni in boiling water for half the time called for on the package. Drain and add macaroni to the beef mixture. Stir and adjust seasonings. Stir in 1 cup each of cheddar and mozzarella.
4. Transfer macaroni and beef mixture to a 13 x 9 inch baking dish and cover with foil. (Make ahead: Casserole can be refrigerated for up to two days or frozen for a few weeks. If frozen, defrost overnight in refrigerator before baking.)
5. Bake at 400℉ degree until heated through, about 30 minutes (or closer to 45 minutes if just removed from refrigerator). Remove the foil, top casserole with the remaining cheese and broil for about 1 minute or until cheese has melted.
Serves 6 to 8
Recipe adapted from Ruhlman.com
Paris-based band Tahiti 80 are releasing their 6th album, ‘Ballroom’, next month.
“Crush!” is the opening track. It’s nice and breezy and all “Ooooooh”ey. Got me some dance fever.
Check out Tahiti 80 on the band’s Website, where you can learn of upcoming shows in France and buy their music.