Friday, March 22, 2013

Meaty Macaroni and Cheese

Meaty Macaroni and Cheese
by Simple Daily Recipes
When I think about, if I could replicate a non-processed macaroni and cheese to taste like the box stuff my kids love so much, I could really have an organic meal on my hands. However, I haven’t made a fresh macaroni and cheese recipe, yet, that my kids will award the Kid Seal of Approval. Oh sure, I’ve made some incredible tasting recipes loved by adults but the kids are…well, their kids.


to feed a family of 4
  • 1/2 pound fresh, lean ground beef or pork
  • 1 small yellow onion, finely chopped
  • 6 to 8 whole garlic cloves
  • 1/2 teaspoon Mexican oregano
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried rubbed Sage
  • 1 regular box macaroni and cheese
  • 1 cup fresh, whole milk, warmed
  • 1 (14 ounce) can diced tomatoes, drained
  • 1 (14 ounce) can black eye peas OR black beans, drained
Start by heating a large skillet over medium to medium high and cooking the meat, onion, garlic cloves, oregano and sage together until meat is browned and there’s no sign of pink. Cooking and stirring occasionally for about 10 minutes.
In the meantime, start a medium saucepan of water to boil the macaroni. When the water comes to a boil, add the dried macaroni. Stir pasta, reduce heat to medium and cook for 8 minutes, until the pasta is tender to the bite. Drain off water. Add powdered cheese and warmed milk to pasta . Stir until smooth and creamy. It may look a little soupy but don’t worry. The milk makes it easier to reheat as a leftover.
Once the meat is fully cooked, add the drained tomatoes, and black eye peas. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Continue to cook until the tomatoes and peas are heated through.
Now as for serving, you could lay a bed of cheesy macaroni in the bowl first and top it with the meaty mixture, as shown in the photo above. Or you can toss the pasta together with the meaty mixture and serve it up like a goulash. Either way, it tastes great.

This is a very good make-ahead-meal recipe for work lunches.

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