Friday, January 4, 2013

Sour Cream & Beef Pasta Skillet

A few days ago, my very best friend asked for a recipe that she could use ground beef for. She had recently bought a bunch of it and wasn't sure what to make. I could have suggested the usual go to suspects, meatloaf, tacos, burgers, but as I was about to suggest them, I realized there aren't quiet enough things to really make with ground beef and it's something we usually have on hand.

I really love skillet meals (you'll learn that quick). They are quick, easy, usually inexpensive and very easy to stretch especially when you are on a budget. I'm not generally one for many vegetables, I just don't like them. There are some I will eat, mostly green things, oddly enough the ones I used in todays recipe, are actually ones I do not like. I found a way to cook them in a way I would eat them though, so, if your cooking for a picky eater (or you are one), this could be a good dish to try!
Alright, here we go.

What you'll need:
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 medium carrot, minced
10 white mushrooms , stems removed & sliced
1/2 a large onion , minced
1 pound ground beef (i prefer 80/20 but you can use your preference)
2 teaspoons dried thyme
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
2 cups water
1 14-ounce can  beef broth
2 cups of mini penne pasta (you can use whatever short pasta is your favorite, anything goes)
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/2 cup sour cream

Add the ground beef to a large skillet, and brown it until it's no longer pink. If you're using 80/20 the meat should have enough natural fat that you don't need to help it, but if you are using a leaner ground beef add a little bit of olive oil to the skillet before you toss in the ground beef so it won't be too dry. 
While the meat is browning, you want to mince as best you can, the carrot, onion, and garlic. 

Then you want to remove the stems and slice up the mushrooms.

When the meat has finished browning, add the vegetables to the meat in the skillet.
 Mix it all in so everything gets distributed evenly.

Add in the,salt, pepper & thyme (no parsley, sage, or rosemary, though...see what i did there?)

Mix that all in nicely and evenly and then, add in the pasta, water,  
3/4 of the can of beef broth and the worcestershire sauce. 
Bring it to a boil, cover it, and then turn the heat down to medium. 
Stir it occasionally.

While the pasta is cooking, measure out the flour,  and in a 
 separate bowl,  combine the flour with the remaining 1/4 can of the broth. 
Wisk until there are no lumps.
When the pasta is cooked to your preferred firmness (im more of an al dente girl, myself) add in the broth and flour mixture, and 1/2 cup of sour cream. 

Mix it all in so it's all coated in that sour creamy goodness and serve.
You can add some parsley or chives if you're feelin' fancy.
I felt fancy.

next up.....tex mex cous cous salad.