Saturday, June 25, 2011

Taco-Macaroni Supper Skillet

 Here is a quick, good one-dish dinner that can be on the table in the amount of time it would take to cook Hamburger Helper and with none of the additives.  I used my "Ready Ground Beef" from the freezer and a homemade taco seasoning.

Ready Ground Beef
I brown 3 lbs. of 15% ground beef with 1 1/2 c. each chopped onion, celery, red pepper and 3 cloves garlic.  When it is cooked, I drain it and rinse it with hot water.  I divide it into 4-5 packages and freeze.  When I am ready to use it, I thaw in the microwave for casseroles or just put in soups still frozen.  I use this anywhere 1 lb. browned ground beef is called for.  I do not worry that the amount is not a whole pound.  It doesn't really make a difference in casseroles and soups.

Taco-Macaroni Supper Skillet
1/2 to 1 lb. lean ground beef (If using Ready Ground Beef, omit onion, pepper, and celery)
1/4 c. chopped onion
1/4 c. chopped red pepper
1/4 c. chopped celery
1 pkg. taco seasoning mix (or homemade-see below)
1 can (8 oz.) tomato sauce
1 1/4 c. water
1 1/2 c. uncooked elbow macaroni
1 1/2 c. frozen corn or 1 can (16 oz.) whole kernel corn, drained
1 can (15 oz.) pinto or kidney beans, rinsed and drained or 1 can (15 oz.) chili beans, undrained
1/2 c. sour cream
1 c. (4 oz.) shredded Cheddar cheese or Mexican Blend

In large skillet brown ground beef, add onion, pepper, and celery and cook for 5-6 minutes.  Drain.  If using Ready Ground Beef start here.  Add taco seasoning mix, tomato sauce, water (use part of measured-out water to rinse tomato sauce can), corn and beans.  Bring to a boil.  Stir.  Reduce heat to medium-low.  Cover, cook 8-12 minutes or until macaroni is of desired doneness, stirring occasionally.  Top with dollops of sour cream.  Sprinkle with cheese.  Cover; let stand 2-3 minutes or until cheese is melted.  Makes 6 servings.

Taco Seasoning
1 T. chili powder
1/4 t. garlic powder
1/4 t. onion powder
1/4 t. cayenne pepper
1/4 t. oregano
1/2 t. paprika
1 1/2 t. cumin
1 t. salt
1 t. black pepper

 Mix together well.  Makes about 2 1/2 T. mix.  Use in above recipe, starting with half of mixture and increasing to taste.  It may be too spicy for children if all the mix is used.

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