“For the past few months ..
I've felt like a wooly bear”
“It has to be this winter .. with the crazy amounts of cold and snow .. I've had such a hard time being motivated beyond being home with my husband .. my favorite jammies .. and comfort food”
I smiled across the table at my friend as we sat in a quiet booth at our favorite Cafe .. enjoying our monthly lunch date
“Please .. I'm right there with you” .. my gaze oscillating between the mac & cheese .. then the burger .. a pang of guilt diverted my eye to the salads.
Little did she know .. sitting in our fridge .. waiting to be warmed for dinner .. was one of my favorite casseroles .. and it certainly wasn't the first time I'd made if over the past few months
This isn't a fancy recipe .. just a simple dish .. that reminds me of my Mom. She's made it for as long as I can remember .. not just for our family .. but it's come to potlucks .. office Christmas parties .. or when she's been called upon to share a freezer meal for others
It's one of the first dishes I learned to cook reliably after starting a family of my own. It was easy to make .. done in less than an hour .. didn't cost a lot .. I couldn't mess it up with my beginner kitchen skills.
I even remember searching out a brown glass dish .. similar to the one she used .. just to add that same sense of home
One can easily modify to suit your family .. following her lead .. we've taken to ground lamb .. though beef is the classic meat of choice.
Any kind of bean works well .. along with a variety of veggies. If heat is your thing .. by all means .. go spicy with your chili powder or add some red pepper flakes.
My favorite way to enjoy is with a side salad & a piece of crusty bread .. The Chef has taken to frying an egg to top it off
However you choose to make it yours .. it's all good
ps: Thank-you .. my friend .. for the gentle nudge toward the omelet of the day & a small salad .. it was perfect and comforting .. just like the company
pps: For those who follow The Veggies .. you may recognize this recipe as one from the archives. Its one of those recipes that deserves to be shared again and again. I made it this week and thought some updated pictures were in order.
- 1 1/4 lb ground beef
- 1 green or red pepper
- 1 onion chopped
- 2 stalks celery chopped
- 8 oz mushrooms coarsely chopped
- 2 - 3 cloves garlic
- 1 Tbsp chili powder ** mild to spicy .. depending on your heat tolerance
- 1 can fire-roasted tomatoes diced
- 1 can kidney beans
- 1 can black beans
- 2 cups brown rice cooked
- sliced black olives chives (optional, for topping)
- shredded cheese for topping
- Cook rice according to directions
- Saute onions, celery, pepper, mushrooms, chili powder, and garlic until the vegetables are being to get soft
- Add ground beef & cook until browned
- Combine the mix along with the tomatoes, beans, and rice in a baking dish.
- Top with cheese & olives
- Cook 30-40 minutes until the cheese is bubbly & slightly brown on the top