Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Retro Hamburger Goulash (AKA Mary's Special)

Yep, it's a strange name; allow me to explain. The retro part is because the original recipe comes from an old cookbook. I believe it is from the 1950's; so that counts as retro even if I did change it a bit. The part about Mary comes from the fact that this dish reminds my husband of a dish his grandmother Mary use to make. This is one of my husband's favorite meals and it is also very easy to make.

You'll need:
1 pound ground beef
1 onion (I sometimes leave it out and use 1 tablespoon of dried minced onion)
2 cloves garlic (you can use powder or dried for this too)
1 heaping teaspoon full of Hungarian paprika (the sweet kind, not hot)
1 teaspoon red pepper flakes (optional or to taste)
1 28 ounce can crushed tomatoes
1/2 cup water
1 pound macaroni

Brown ground beef in a large skillet along with the onion if using fresh.

Meanwhile bring a pot of water to a boil and cook the macaroni as directed. If you time it right your pasta will be done just in time to add it to the sauce.

Drain off any oil from the meat and add the garlic, paprika, pepper flakes and minced onion if using.
Stir it around and let the garlic cook for a minute.
Add the crushed tomatoes and the water.
Let simmer as the macaroni cooks until it is thickened for about 10 to 15 minutes (give or take).
Add the macaroni to the beef mixture and stir well.
Don't add the pasta before the liquid cooks down in the pan.
That's it! Serve and enjoy!

Ground beef in the pan with the dried onion, garlic, pepper flakes and paprika.

Simmering before the macaroni is added

Yum! Yum! Stir in the macaroni. You can use whole wheat if you wish.

I served it with carrots this time but we seem to like it best with zucchini or yellow squash fried in a pan with some onions. It's also nice with a green salad.
I hope you try it, and enjoy.

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