I have a paper due on the 10th of February, and it is an important paper that will determine if I will be a PhD candidate or not. Therefore, I will not be as active on the blog for a few weeks, but I will still post regularly. I will just be a bit more terse. (PLEASE PRAY FOR ME, OR SEND GOOD KARMA MY WAY!)
Nevertheless, I'm glad I have been taking advantage of the winter break by making a lot of dishes that I had always wanted to make like tamales, a rosca de reyes, and bagels. I now want to make churros, pretzels, and perfect my puff pastry-making skills. I will worry about all of that later, though.
Anyway, I made this chili macaroni yesterday, and it is beyond delicious. That little puny bowl of macaroni you see just teased and prodded my tastebuds haha.
I've been trying to use my cookbook more lately, so I got this recipe from my Betty Crocker cookbook. The feminist in me doesn't like the title of the cookbook, but it does have a lot of good recipes and tips in it. Below the recipe, I have also included a Southwestern variation of this dish. I also added some optional additions in italics that were not mentioned in the cookbook. You can make this a vegetarian meal easily by adding more beans or tofu. Enjoy!
1 cup (3.5 oz) uncooked elbow macaroni (I would add 1/2 - 1 cup if you like a more even ratio of pasta)
1 lb lean ground beef (or ground turkey, ground chicken, tofu, or nothing at all)
1 med onion, chopped (1/2 cup)
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 can (15-16 ounces) kidney beans, drained (use another can if not using meat)
1 can (14.5 ounces) diced tomatoes, undrained (or whole tomatoes, cut up)
1 can (8 ounces) tomato sauce
1 can (6 ounces) tomato paste
1 Tbsp chili powder
1 tsp ground cumin
1-2 tsp cayenne pepper (optional; my addition)
2 slices of Velveeta (optional; my addition)
1 cup (4 ounces) shredded Cheddar cheese (I shredded it myself from block cheese. YUM!)
Cook macaroni as directed on package. While macaroni is cooking, cook beef, onion, and garlic in 4-quart saucepan or Dutch oven over med-high heat, stirring occasionally, until beef is brown. Drain (I didn't).
Drain macaroni, and add it to the meat. Add in the remaining ingredients with the exception of the cheese (I actually added two slices of Velveeta to the sauce itself). heat to boiling, stirring occasionally. Then, reduce heat, and simmer uncovered for 20 minutes. Sprinkle mixture with cheese, or add cheese to individual bowls.
Southwestern Chili Macaroni: Use black beans instead of kidney beans, rinsed and drained. Add shredded Monterey Jack cheese instead of cheddar. Add 1 can of chopped green chiles. You could also add cilantro on top of individual servings.