I was working on this post when I saw a post on my buddy Christy Jordan’s site last week. It did such a good job of summing up why she and I blog about the kinds of food we do. Her post is about her Tomato Mozzarella Melts and how using dried basil (versus fresh) doesn’t make you a bad person. And I have to agree. You aren’t going to be fined by the culinary police if dried basil fits into your budget better than fresh or if you use a little cream of chicken soup.
I try my best to keep the recipes I post on Southern Bite simple and inexpensive. I’m not going to swear off convenience foods like brown gravy mix and canned condensed soups, ever. Sure there are probably more wholesome options, but two things have to be considered here: time and money. And believe me, sitting down with your family for a home cooked meal, no matter that it includes ingredients that might make Wolfgang Puck turn his nose up, is far more important than to me than worrying over some ingredients. Your family gathered around the dinner table eating a home cooked meal not only nourishes the body, but the soul as well when you get a chance to just stop and ask your kids how their days were. One of the biggest philosophies behind Southern Bite for me is to get families back to the table, enjoying a meal and each others company. It’s an opportunity to reconnect with your family in this fast-paced conglomeration of activities we call life. And sometimes it has to be about cheap and easy food. I mean, you can’t tell me that fat-filled fast food is ANY better than what’s in a little brown gravy mix. And really, who cares if you used some french onion soup mix rather than spending an hour caramelizing onions? I certainly don’t.
- 1 1/2 pounds of ground beef
- 1 small onion, chopped
- 1 1/2 cups macaroni
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1 packet brown gravy mix
- 1 cup water
- 1 can condensed cheddar cheese soup
- 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
- In a large skillet, brown ground beef with onions.
- Meanwhile, cook macaroni according to package instructions and drain.
- Once completely browned, drain meet and onions.
- Return to hot pan and add garlic, saute 1 to 2 minutes, or until garlic is fragrant. (I love to use my Microplane for garlic rather than having to clean that dad-blasted garlic press.)
- Add brown gravy mix and water. Mix thoroughly.
- Add can of cheddar cheese soup and stir to combine.
- Add drained pasta to meat mixture and stir well.
- Add shredded cheddar cheese and stir until melted.