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Pantry/Freezer Meal….a lesson in creative staple cooking

Last week I was in a cooking rut.  My CSA delivery was not due for another day and the Costco coupons did not start until Friday…so I was trying to hold off on grocery shopping until then.  It was 5 o’clock and I needed to figure out something that was quick-cooking and not pasta or chicken.  Here’s where I got creative:

Hamburger Steaks with Sherry-Onion Gravy, MashedPotatoes, and Raisin-Nut Green Beans

Ingredients (in other words, things we keep on hand in our house):

  • frozen hamburger patties (note: Costco now carries lean, organic frozen patties…perfect for the P90X-er in your life)
  • Worcestershire sauce
  • garlic powder, onion powder, salt, pepper (feel free to use Montreal Steak seasoning, or any other combo)
  • 1 large onion, sliced into 1/4 in rings
  • 1-2 T flour
  • 1/4 c sherry (or any other dry booze you have lying around)
  • 1-1 1/2 c beef broth/chicken broth/water (I had chicken, but beef would’ve been best)
  • frozen mashed potatoes (or homemade/boxed….however you like it, I always pick up a few packs at Costco when I’m there)
  • green Beans (fresh or frozen taste best)
  • 2 T raisins
  • 2 T sliced almonds
  • a drizzle of olive oil
  • a “dash” of Mrs. Dash (or other all-purpose seasoning)
Method:
  1. On a sheet pan, lay out your hamburger patties and douse them with the Worcestershire sauce and dry seasonings.  Let that soak into the meat a little before cooking.  Once the puddles of sauce have mostly absorbed, cook the meat in a skillet over medium heat about 5-6 minutes per side (cooked through, nicely browned…almost caramelized).  Remove from pan and set aside.
  2. To the same pan, add the onions and let them brown and get soft.  Sprinkle the flour over the onions to absorb any oil, making a medium brown-colored roux.  Turn the heat up to med-hi/hi and quickly de-glaze the pan with the sherry, loosening up the browned bits from the bottom of the pan.  Once the heavy alcohol smell  has cooked off, whisk in the broth and reduce heat to medium-low, stirring occasionally, allowing the gravy to thicken.
  3. Meanwhile, heat up the mashed potatoes, adding a little milk if they seem dry.
  4. Once the potatoes are hot and the gravy is thickened, add the meat back to the gravy to re-warm.
  5. For the green beans: steam/boil/microwave the beans until they are bright green and not too soft.  Toss with the raisins, almonds, olive oil, and seasoning.
And there you have it…..creative cooking on the fly.  This meal takes about 20 minutes start-to-finish.
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One response »

  1. my girl!

    Reply

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