Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Fiddle Sticks!

Sigh. I am notoriously bad at taking photos of what I cook, it seems. Not that there's been a lack of cooking! Actually, when I stopped by Sweetnicks to check out this week's (and sadly, the final) installment of the ARF / 5-A-Day event, I noticed a post Cate had written which mentioned her son's recently found love for Beefaroni but not, however, for the canned version. I happened to have a version of my own lying dormant in my files so I made up a small batch of it for lunch on Monday. After eating it, I then thought to take a photo. Oh well. Next time!

This particular recipe (which I'm passing onto Ruth's event, Presto Pasta Nights, even though I am lacking a real photo - enjoy the styled one from Google!) I actually re-converted from a veganized version I made up when I first started not being able to tolerate meat. I'm going to give both the measurements for the meat-eater's and the vegan's renditions, since I have them on hand! It's been so long since I've had the Chef that I honestly don't remember what it tastes like, but this is a sweetly sauced, meaty dish that is awesome next to a salad for lunch, and for dinner I would probably serve bigger bowls of it (the serving sze for this recipe is a little on the "wee" side - it is scaled for kids!) with some steamed veggies (or even these carrots... mmm) on the side, or I'd stir them right in! I like one-pot meals, what can I say? Well, here's hoping that if Nicholas tries my 'roni that it beats out the can!

Katie (writer of Thyme for Cooking fame) is hosting PPN this week, so be sure to check out her blog on Friday for some other pasta dishes, too!

You can make this meal vegan by swapping out the beef for 3/4 cup TVP granules (I like Bob's Red Mill) soaked in a little more than 1/2 cup hot water for 5-10 minutes.

Un - Canned Beefaroni (or "Mock-a-roni")
Serves 4 children or lunch servings
4 oz (uncooked) whole wheat elbow macaroni (or try the "Smart" white-whole-wheat)
12 ounces extra-lean ground beef (or TVP substitute, see above)
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tsp onion powder
1 (10.75 oz) can condensed tomato soup
1 tbsp tomato paste
1 1/4 cups water
1/2 tbsp brown sugar
salt and pepper
  1. Cook macaroni according to package directions. Drain and set aside.
  2. In a large pan, brown beef*.
  3. Stir in garlic and onion powder, cook until fragrant (about 2-3 minutes).
  4. Stir in condensed soup, tomato paste, water and sugar. Bring to a simmer.
  5. Stir in cooked pasta, taste and add salt and pepper as required (I like a lot of pepper, use what you like).
  6. Serve hot.

*Note: if using TVP, add it along with the soup addition.

Amount Per Serving (With Beef)
Calories: 321.7
Total Fat: 15.2 g
Cholesterol: 58.7 mg
Sodium: 508.4 mg
Total Carbs: 27.0 g
Dietary Fiber: 2.6 g
Protein: 20.2 g

Amount Per Serving (With TVP)
Calories: 182.6
Total Fat: 0.7 g
Cholesterol: 0.0 mg
Sodium 453.8: mg
Total Carbs: 32.3 g
Dietary Fiber: 5.6 g
Protein 13.3: g


  1. Sigh, this sounds like comfort food I remember as a child. I would eat the spaghetti-o's but never anything else canned with red sauce. It had to be "uncanned homemade" for me to eat beefaroni type stuff.

  2. So, Chef-Boy-R-Dee is still around? I ate my share...
    But I prefer your... I would have cleaned my plate before photos, too ;-))

  3. Saw this on the round-up and I can't wait to try it! Though I admit I do still indulge in the Chef every now and again!


Thanks for the feedback!