Recipe by Ciocia DD
Here's another creation in my quest for "microwave-proof work leftovers." Lean ground beef, crisp/tender broccoli, lycopene loaded diced tomatoes, fiber-rich mushrooms and a reduced fat sauce make this a go-to one plate meal. Please note: This is not a one DISH meal as it does take more than one pot/pan to prepare. I group the prep time and the cooking time together. To me, cooking time means you are done in the kitchen and can go sit down.
Meat and Seasoning
- 2 lbs 90% lean ground beef, browned and drained
- 1 tablespoon Mexican chili powder
- 2 teaspoons garlic powder
- 1⁄2 teaspoon oregano, dried
- 1 tablespoon cumin, ground
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon pepper, freshly ground black
- 1⁄2 teaspoon cayenne pepper, ground
- 1 tablespoon cornstarch
- 3⁄4 cup water
- 16 ounces brown button mushrooms
- 6 ounces diced onions
- 4 cups water, divided in half
- 8 ounces dry pasta (I used Barilla Large Shells for this)
- 4 quarts water (for cooking pasta then broccoli)
- 8 ounces broccoli florets
- 28 ounces diced tomatoes, canned
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 1 tablespoon minced garlic clove
- 6 ounces evaporated skim milk
- 1 tablespoon flour
- 1 cup skim milk
- 1⁄4 cup fresh parmesan cheese, grated
- 4 ounces reduced-fat cream cheese, cubed
- 8 ounces sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
- 1 tablespoon basil, dried
- 1 tablespoon cilantro, dried
- 1 tablespoon oregano, dried
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
Directions See How It's Made
- Add the ground beef back to the skillet used for browning. Mix in the remaining ingredients in the "Meat and Seasoning" grouping. Heat on medium low until almost all of the liquid has been reabsorbed by the meat. Remove the meat to a large mixing bowl. Use the same skillet to prepare the mushrooms and onions.
- In the skillet from the meat, brown the onion until it's translucent. Add the mushrooms and 2 cups of water. Cook covered on medium high until the water has dissipated somewhat. When you stir the mushrooms you should be able to see the pan bottom. Add the remaining 2 cups of water and cook down again. While mushrooms are in initial stage of cooking move on to the next steps.
- Bring to boil 4 quarts water. Add pasta.
- Set broccoli in a deep ceramic or glass bowl with room on top for a collendar or sieve. When pasta has finished cooking, pour the pasta into the collendar. The hot water will cook the broccoli perfectly. Remove the pasta and collendar. Add pasta to mixing bowl with meat.
- Let the broccoli sit in the hot water for 5 - 7 minutes, depending on how well cooked you like your broccoli. Use a glass or ceramic bowl because it holds the heat longer than a metal or plastic bowl. Drain broccoli and use collendar again for next step. Add broccoli to mixing bowl.
- Set the diced tomatoes to drain. Reserve the juices for another use. After fully drained remove tomatoes to bowl with meat.
- Brown the minced garlic in the butter. Whisk the flour into the evaporated milk. When the garlic begins to brown whisk the milk and flour mixture into the butter and garlic. Bring to a light boil.
- Add the fresh skim milk and whisk again. Bring back to a light boil. Add cream cheese and stir until melted. Reduce heat to medium low. Add the Parmesan cheese and stir until melted. Add seasonings and stir well. Add shredded cheddar and stir until combined. Let sit to melt the cheese.
- Add the cooked mushrooms and onion mixture to the mixing bowl. Pour the sauce over all. Carefully using a silicone spoonula scrape down the sides of the bowl and fold ingredients to coat. Take care not to break the pasta apart.