Friday, June 10, 2011


Have you ever had those days where you don't want to cook anything fancy and you don't seem to have much in your cupboards?  Well, I have those all the time it seems like.  Then, a blog I follow, One Crazy Cookie posted a recipe that reminded me of one my mom made growing up.  There's nothing better than a meal that brings back good childhood memories.  My mom didn't cook too many things from scratch since she worked full time and had a long commute to and from work.  But this was one of my favorites.  Want to know the best part?  It's super easy!!!!!!  You can add different things to your family's tastes.
(sorry for the oh-so-fantastic pictures, my digital camera's battery is dead so I have to use my cell phone and I am by far not a pro picture taker, and then this was taken when we did the leftovers)

1 lb hamburger
2 cans tomato sauce
1 can diced tomatoes (with green chilies to add some flavor)
1 1/2 cup elbow macaroni
1 can corn
1 sm. can mushrooms
1 packet ranch seasonings
minced onions. 

Cook macaroni.  Combine ranch packet, onions, and hamburger, brown it. Drain hamburger and add tomato sauce, diced tomatoes, and corn.
Add drained macaroni and stir. Heat until it warmed through.

You can omit the corn and mushrooms, and even the ranch and onions but they add awesome flavor.  If you don't want the tomato taste to be too sharp, add some sugar (about 3-4 Tbsp) to neutralize the acidity of the tomato sauce.  Also, if you want to spice it up, try some rotel tomatoes, or you can used Italian diced tomatoes and add other seasonings.  Play around with the recipe until you find what you like.  I love that it can be so simple and versatile.  Pretty much anything goes.  Also, some shredded cheese on top would be scrumptious.  Adding some zucchini or other veggies would be wonderful so when your garden is overflowing with zucchini plants, add them in (and send a few of those zucchinis my way because I love them, but have no gardening talent whatsoever) My kids wolfed this down and willingly ate it for leftovers the next two days.  I had planned on freezing the rest but they loved it so much I didn't have any left to freeze.

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