Tag Archives: noodles

Simple Steak & Noodles

Tis the season for hearty fare!   Growing up we ate quite a few crockpot meals and my favorite ones contained the soft egg noodles that still kept a bit of chew to them.  For the most part they’re commonly served with either chicken or tuna recipes, but why leave out my favorite??…beef!  The slowcooker makes the cut up roast so very tender and who doesn’t love not having that extra step of boiling noodles?!

*I garnished ours with a bit of chopped Italian flat leaf parsley for freshness and a spoonful of sour cream for extra creaminess..completely optional though!  However, promise me you won’t forget the bread and butter!!

The Starting Lineup

  • 2 1/2 lbs beef roast (chuck, tri-tip, etc)
  • 1/3 cup flour
  • 1/2 tsp each kosher salt and pepper
  • 2 Tbsp canola oil
  • 4 cups (32oz) beef broth
  • 1 packet onion soup mix (I.e. Lipton)
  • 1 package mushrooms, halved or quartered
  • 1 Tbsp tomato paste
  • A couple dashes Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 package egg noodles, uncooked (12-16oz)

Begin by simply adding the cubed roast to a gallon size ziplock bag along with the flour and the salt and pepper; shake to coat.  

Heat a pan and the canola oil to medium heat.  Add the coated beef (in batches/do not overcrowd your pan, this will take 3-4 batches) to the heated pan and sear each side.  Once the meat has seared, add to your slowcooker.   

To that slow cooker, simply add in the remaining ingredients EXCEPT the noodles, cover and cook on low for 8 hours.  The last hour you will add in the egg noodles to cook through.

When time is up, garnish with a bit of chopped parsley,a dollop of sour cream and a nice hunk of crusty bread for dipping…if so desired ;). Enjoy!!  

Simple Ground Beef Stroganoff

One pot!  Yep, again, here is a family-filling meal that can be made all in just one pot!  Easy cleanup is always an incentive to cook a homemade meal for your family..or at least to me it is.

Now this may not be your traditional Russian ‘Beef Stroganov’ made with strips of beef, brandy etc., BUT it’s pretty darn tasty, quick and good on your pocketbook!  With a family that is paramount for me.  Also, since it uses a lot of fresh ingredients, you can feel good about serving it to your loved ones. 🙂

The Starting Lineup

  • 1 lb lean ground beef
  • 1 8oz package mushrooms, sliced/quartered
  • 1/2 diced onion, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3 tsp paprika
  • 2 tsp garlic powder
  • 2 tsp onion powder
  • 3 cups beef broth (low-sodium)
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 8oz pasta noodles
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • Fresh parsley garnish, optional

Begin by rinsing and prepping your veggies!

Next in a large pan (remember it’s a one pot meal!), heat 1 tbsp of the extra virgin olive oil to medium heat.  Add in the mushrooms and sauté for 4-5 minutes.  Transfer to a bowl and set aside.


To that same pot, heat another tbsp of oil and add in the onions and sauté for 5 minutes (till translucent) followed by the garlic for another minute.  Now goes in the ground beef, paprika, garlic powder, onion powder, salt and pepper.  Cook completely through; taste for more seasoning if needed.


If you used a lean ground beef, you likely won’t need to drain excess grease.  However, if you used an 80/20 blend (which is perfectly fine) you may need to drain some of that grease out (also perfectly fine).

To the cooked beef, add the beef broth and noodles.  Gently stir together and bring to a boil.  Cover and lower heat to a simmer for 18-20 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Remember to cover friends! I didn’t think taking a picture of a pan with a lid on was too interesting…


Finally, remove from heat and stir in the sour cream and mushrooms.  Top with fresh parsley and dig in!  Enjoy!!

King Ranch Mac n’ Cheese

King Ranch Casserole is as Texas comfort food as chicken fried steak and gravy.  The difference is, if you’ve never been to this giant state, you may of never heard of it.  Legend has it that the name comes from the “King Ranch”, one of the largest ranches in the United States…now no one knows the truth and every family and restaurant recipe varies, but they’re generally all made with the same few ingredients: chicken, diced tomatoes, onion, bell pepper and a creamy soup.  

Now here’s my tweak on it, instead of the normal layering of torn corn tortillas (lasagna style), I amped up the comfort level and made it into a ooey, gooey mac n’ cheese!!  Sooooo good and still Texas approved!

*A rotisserie chicken from your local grocer would work great for this as well.

**You can use a casserole dish to bake if you do not have an oven proof pan.

The Starting Lineup

  • 1lb chicken, cooked and chopped (2-3 cups)
  • 8oz macaroni noodles
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 1 green bell pepper, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 can diced tomatoes with green chilis (I like spicy)
  • 8oz block velveeta cheese, cubed
  • 1 can cream of chicken soup
  • 8oz container sour cream
  • 2 Tbsp butter
  • 1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil (if cooking your own chicken)
  • 2 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp ancho/new mexico chili powder
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • 1 1/2 cups cheese, shredded 

Garnish

  • Tortilla chips (I fried up my own, but I’m crazy like that)
  • Cilantro, fresh   

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

If you’re cooking your own chicken (not a store bought rotisserie), heat a 10″ oven proof pan to medium heat and add in the olive oil.  Once hot, add in the chicken and cook through.  *Since I made my own, I seasoned with a bit of cumin, salt & pepper.  

 Meanwhile, in a large stockpot of salted boiling water, cook your noodles.  Boil for about 2 minutes less than package directions, strain and set aside.  Also, prep the vegetables! 

  

After the chicken is cooked through, set aside.  Once cooled you can chop up into 1″ pieces.

In that same pan that you cooked the chicken in, melt the 2 Tbsp’s of butter and add in the onion, garlic & bell pepper and saute for a few minutes. 

 Next add in the can of diced green-chili tomatoes and cubed Velveeta cheese.  Stir till creamy.  

 Now whisk in the cream of chicken soup, sour cream, chili powder, cumin.  Add in the chopped, cooked chicken.  

 Finally, carefully fold in the cooked pasta noodles and then top with the shredded cheese.  

   Move to the preheated oven and let bake for about 30 minutes, until bubbly.  *If you do not have an oven safe pan, here is where you can pour into a casserole dish, top with cheese and then bake.  **Make sure to place a foil lined baking-sheet on the bottom rack to catch any oozey cheese!

Remove and top with the cilantro and crushed tortilla chips.  

  

  

  

 

Roasted Poblano Mac n’ Crema

This is the bomb!! (Do people still say that anymore?….ehh, I don’t even care). This pasta salad is my mexican spin on the classic backyard bbq staple and it’s a lot better!  It’s light, but still creamy and has just a bit of heat without overpowering.  Plus, let’s not forget that roasted flavor from the poblano peppers and cumin!  

However, the best part about this dish is that it’s equally delicious served either warm or cold!  Truth!  We’ll often eat the side dish warm on the first night I prepare it and serve the leftovers cold (if there are any) the next day!

*This can be made with gluten-free noodles if desired.

*I prefer to keep the seeds in my jalapeno or serrano pepper, as this makes a large batch, but to each their own.

*I prefer to use the traditional macaroni noodle here, but any short noodle can work in a pinch..as you can see from my rotini below.  Oops! 😉

The Starting Lineup

  • 16oz elbow noodles (any short noodle can work)
  • 3 poblano peppers
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 jalapeño, minced (or a serrano for more heat)
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 cup+ Mexican crema 
  • Olive oil
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp red chili flake
  • 1 tsp Mexican oregano
  • Kosher salt & pepper (pinch of each) 

   

 
We’ll start by roasting our poblano peppers for this yummy side dish!  You can do this 1 of two ways…either A. Cook the poblanos directly over a gas flame till charred on all sides or B. Place on a baking sheet under your broiler (turning as needed) to blacken.  Onced they’re charred you can place in a bowl covered with plastic wrap to steam for about 10 minutes…*When ready, remove the blackened skin, seeds and stems.  Dice the poblanos up! 

   While the poblano peppers are steaming, go ahead and bring a large stock pot filled with salted water to a boil.  Once the water is boiling, cook the noodles to package directions, drain and set aside. 

In a large pot over medium-high heat, add in 2 Tbsps of oil and sauté the chopped onions for 3-4 minutes.  Next add in the roasted poblanos, minced jalapeño (or serrano) followed by the garlic, cumin, chili flake, oregano, salt and pepper.  Turn the heat down to low (or remove pot completely from stove top) and stir in the noodles and Crema. 

     Serve as a side at your next shin-dig and reap in the compliments!  Again, this can be served warm OR cold.  It’s that dang good!

    Italian Stuffed Meatloaf Florentine

    I’m giving away a secret…my famous Italian meatloaf recipe!  Ok, well maybe it’s only famous between my sister and I, but it’s ridiculous!!  It’s almost like a ginormous meatball or maybe a deconstructed lasagna..call it what you want, but we call it delicioso!

    It’s a fun twist on your traditional American meatloaf and mashed potatoes.  There’s nothing wrong with old fashioned comfort food,  but this spin will keep your week nights a little less boring.. ☺️ You can also prepare the meat mixture the night before and then just sauté the spinach and assemble the next evening if you’re crunched for time after a busy day at work.

    I hope you enjoy this family favorite recipe as much as me…and my sister. 😉

    The Starting Lineup

    • 1 lb lean ground beef
    • 1 lb lean ground pork
    • 15oz container ricotta cheese
    • 2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
    • 1 green bell pepper, diced
    • 1/2 large yellow onion, diced
    • 5 large cloves garlic, minced
    • 1/2 cup Italian flat leaf parsley, chopped
    • 1 bag frozen spinach, slighty thawed
    • 1 cup Italian bread crumbs
    • 1/2 cup milk
    • 2 egg, beaten
    • 3 Tbsp Italian seasoning
    • 2 tsp salt
    • 1 tsp black pepper
    • 2 Tbsp EVOO 

    Side Dish

    • 1 pckg noodles (I.e. Penne, spaghetti)
    • 1 jar of marinara sauce  

    Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.

    We’re going to first rinse and chop & dice our vegetables (onion, garlic, bell pepper & parsley).  You’ll also seperate the minced garlic.  2 cloves for the spinach and 3 cloves for the meat mixture. 

     

    Heat the EVOO to med-low in a skillet and add in the 2 cloves minced garlic.  Cook till fragrant, about 1 minute.   

     

    Next, you’ll add in the spinach.  *dont worry if it’s still a bit frozen, it will work.  You can also use fresh spinach if you have that available.  

    Stir the garlic spinach mix occasionally till warm.  Transfer the cooked spinach to a dish and set aside while keeping the leftover liquid in the skillet. *I like to place my cooked spinach in a paper towel lined bowl to soak up the extra juices. 

     

    While you’re finishing up cooking the spinach (aka the florentine) portion of this masterpiece, we’ll start the meat mixture.  Super simple!

    In a very large bowl, combine almost everything else.  The beef, pork, veggies, garlic, bread crumbs, seasonings, the beaten eggs and the milk.  Remember to take off your jewelry because you’re about to get your hands dirty!  Get in there and thoroughly mix this up. 

      


    Now, in a 9×13 baking dish that has been sprayed with non-stick, you’re going to start the fun part! 

    Take about 2/3 of the meat mixture and make a firmly packed rectangle while pressing down the middle to create an almost 1″ thick by 2″ tall “walls”.  You’re going to be filling this area with some good stuff! 

     

    Spread your container of ricotta cheese in the base 1st. 


    Next, you’re going to spread the garlic-spinach mix overtop that.  

    Then sprinkle about 1 cup of mozzarella cheese over your spinach. 


    Finally, we’ll top this off with the remaining 1/3 meat mixture.  I like to almost make ‘hamburger patties’ out of it and place over top while pinching it all together to make a seal.  It’s really easier than it seems.  Then I just press and pack it tight to keep that perfect rectangular shape.

     

    Pop this in your preheated oven.  It will cook for one hour.

    After about 30 minutes of you’re stuffed meatloaf cooking, start your noodles and sauce.  I like to pour my sauce right into the skillet we sautéed our spinach in.  That flavor from the remaining EVOO, garlic and spinach will only enhance the flavor of the jarred sauce.  *cook your noodles about 2 minutes less than the package directions.  Once time is up ladle straight into the marinara sauce, along with about 1/2 cup of the pasta cooking water. 

       

    While your side is coming together, that 1 hour should be up.  Sprinkle the remaining cup of mozzarella cheese over your cooked meatloaf and cook for about 10 more minutes, till cheese is bubbly and melted.  Remove from oven and allow to rest for 5 minutes. 

       

    Cut into thick slices and place over your marinara dressed noodles alongside a glass of good vino.  Enjoy!! 

     

    *If you do not care for ricotta, you can substitute with all mozzarella cheese.  The thick slices of mozzarella in you’re grocers deli section would be ideal, nice and gooey!

    *I chose a lean ground beef, because there’s enough fat in the ground pork to keep it juicy.

      

    Bacon Bolognese

    This is quite likely the best bolognese this side of… well, somewhere..  It has bacon in it, yes, bacon!  Which is actually quite authentic of bolognese recipes.

    It’s not enough of the pork delicacy to think you’re eating breakfast or a strange BLT, but just enough to add some smokiness and an underlying flavor to the dish.

    The Starting Lineup

    • 1/2 package (6-8 strips) bacon
    • 8-12oz ground beef
    • 8-12oz ground pork
    • 28oz can of quality whole tomatoes, hand crushed
    • 1 cup chicken broth/stock
    • 1 cup of dry white wine
    • 1/4 cup of Marsala or Sweet Vermouth
    • 1 sweet onion, chopped
    • 2 carrots, chopped
    • 6 cloves garlic, minced
    • 1 lb spaghetti or tagliatelle noodles
    • Extra Virgin Olive Oil
    • Parmesan, grated
    • Kosher Salt & Pepper

    I always like everything in order before I begin cooking…and I mean everything.  So after I get all of my ingredients ready, I’ll then ‘prep’ the veggies, etc.  It makes for a much more efficient and clean kitchen.  I like things CLEAN! ✨

    In a large Dutch oven, heat 1-2Tbsp of EVOO over med-high heat.  Once oil is hot, add in your carrots, onion and bacon.  Cook till soft and onions start to look translucent.

    This should take about 8-10 minutes.  Now add in your meats (pork & ground beef).   Season liberally with salt & pepper.  Cook with the bacon/veggie mixture for another 8-10 minutes,

    Once meat is basically cooked through (this recipe will cook all day, meat will be done by day’s end), drain a bit of the ‘grease’ out.  You still want to maintain some of it though.  There’s a LOT of flavor there friend!  A LOT..

    Next, add in your smashed up garlic cloves.  Let simmer about 1 minute and then deglaze your pan with your Marsala or Sweet Vermouth.  Pour in your wine and chicken stock here after you scraped up any brown bits while deglazing.

    Next up, those glorious (San Marzano) tomatoes.  You’ll want to take your rings off here and literally hand crush these suckers straight into your meat and veggie mix.  *Take note: wear an apron and/or do your best to point these tomatoes towards the back wall and straight into your pot.  Tomato juice is no joke!

    Stir together, bring to a boil and then cover this baby up while reducing heat to a simmer.  She’s going to sit, cook, marinate and smell your casa up good!!  Let cook down for a solid 4-6 hours.  It will thicken up over this time.image

    Once you’re ready for dinner, cook noodles to 1-2 minutes UNDER package directions.  Do not drain the noodles, but add straight from boiling water to sauce filled pot.  *reserve some pasta water if your sauce needs thinned.  You can also add a cup of milk.  Sounds weird,  but it works and is wonderful.  Trust me.*. The noodles will continue to cook in your warm, aromatic sauce.

    Garnish your Bacon Bolognese with some freshly grated Parmesan cheese and a glass of vino!

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