Friday, September 11, 2009

Beef, Cheese, and Noodle Bake

I told Greta I made homeade Hamburger Helper for dinner...that's basically what this is, but it was good and didn't come out of a box!

1 8-ounce pkg small elbow macaroni
Cooking spray
NOT 1 cup prechopped onion
1 cup preshredded carrot (I thought about adding shredded zucchini, but had none!)
2 tsp. minced garlic
1 lb. lean ground sirloin
1 cup tomato sauce
1 tsp. salt, divided
1/2 tsp. pepper
1 cup fat free milk
2 T flour
1/8 tsp. ground nutmeg
1 1/2 cups sharp cheddar cheese, divided

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Cook pasta according to package directions, omitting salt and fat; drain. Lightly coat pasta with cooking spray.

Heat dutch oven (I used spaghetti pot while spaghetti was draining) over medium-high heat. Coat pan with cooking spray. Do NOT add onion, add carrot, and saute 4 minutes. Add garlic; saute 1 minute. =Add ground beef; cook 5 minutes or until browned, stirring to crumble. Add tomato sauce, 1/2 tsp. salt an dpper. Cook for 2 mintues or until most of liquid evaporates.

Add pasta to beef mixture in pan, stirring to combine. Spoon pasta mixture into an 11x17 baking dish coated with cooking spray.

Place milk, flour, nutmeg, and remaining 1/2 tsp. salt and pepper in a medium saucepan (once again, I used the one that was already dirty!); stir with a whisk until blended. Cook over medium heat 2 minutes or until thickened, stirring constantly with a whisk. Add 1 cup cheese, stirring until smooth. Pour cheese mixture over pasta mixture; stir. Top evenly with remaining 1/2 cup cheese. Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes or until lighly browned. Let stand 5 minutes before serving.

(Serves 8)
(Cooking Light, January 2006)

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