Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Meat Lover's Pizza Casserole

Hello! I am back again with a new recipe!
Meat Lover's Pizza Casserole
I had made a pizza casserole before, I think it was before I started the blog. My husband had said it was ok, so I have been looking for a new one. This one was it! I got it from my Taste of Home Casseroles cookbook. I am really liking this book so far. Spoiler alert, my husband really really liked the casserole! On with the show!


1 pound lean ground beef, 1 medium onion chopped, 1 can (15 oz) pizza sauce, 8 oz cooked and drained elbow macaroni, 2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese, 3 1/2 oz sliced pepperoni : quartered, 1/2 tsp salt
I only used half an onion, because I thought a whole one would've been way to much. I am sure you've noticed that in every recipe that I have done that calls for onions, I scale it back.

Cook macaroni according to package directions.

Never be afraid to get the off-off brand! It not name brand, its not even the "ok" store brand! Saving money is the best.

In a large skillet cook beef and onion over med-high heat until meat is no longer pink; drain. Stir in remaining ingredients.

I multi tasked and cooked the noodles and beef at the same time! The beef of course took less time than the noodles. I am still trying to get the hang of my new gas range. It freaks me out, I always think I am going to blow the house up when I use it. But it does cook things super fast!

It was fun to cut the pepperoni. Not sure why, but it was.

When I drained the noodles, I tried to slowly transfer them into the pot to mix in with the meat, but it all just went, "plop!". Making it very difficult to stir.

There it is, all mixed together. Note on the cheese! It most defiantly could've used 4 cups! It had an ok amount of cheese, but it wasn't very cheesy. Next time, more cheese please.

Transfer to greased 2 qt baking dish. Bake uncovered at 350 degrees for 40-45 minutes or until heated through.

There it is, all done. Sorry for the weird angle, not sure what I was thinking.

I timed it perfectly for when my husband got home from work, so when he scooped himself a bowl, I had to take a picture of it. It took me several tried because some one was, "helping me".

The above is about my third attempt at a photo. My husband, the goof, kept photobombing my picture. Its ok though. He is so cute, I let him. And he did put ranch on it. He likes ranch on his pizza, so it stands to reason he would like it on a pizza casserole. He did. Well there ya go! Another recipe from me! Happy eating!

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Technical Difficulties!

So my camera was being a huge diva. I had taken, or so I thought, quite a few pictures of my process only to find out later that certain ones weren't taken. Ugh!!
So I apologize for the lack of pictures in this recipe. Hopefully you will get the picture(pun!).
This recipe will have to be made again, because we didn't eat it(not that I ever would)! I made it for a friend in church that recently had a little boy. When we took it to them my husband looked a teensy bit jealous.
Hearty Calico Bean Bake
I am not sure why it is called calico, but I assumes its because of the many different types of beans.
I got the recipe from this new cookbook I got from Powell's Book store in Portland, Oregon. It was a cool store with tons of cheap books. I know it is more to others, so they can describe it better!


1 can(16 oz) pork and beans undrained, 1 can (16 oz) Kidney beans rinsed and drained, 1 can (16 0z) chili beans undrained, 1 can (15 1/2 oz) great northern beans rinsed and drained, 1 can (14 1/2)cut wax beans drained, 1 1/2 cup brown sugar, 1 1/2 cups cubed fully cooked ham, 1/2 cup ketchup, 1 small chopped onion, 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce

A few notes on the ingredients. The Great Northern Beans, I had never heard of previously. It took me a good ten minutes staring at all the beans in the aisle until I saw 2 cans way at the top. It was pretty impossible to see. The ham, was interesting as well. I thought I would just buy the pre-cut stuff that is made for breakfast omelets. Way too expensive! It was like $5 for one! So even though "Ham in water product" sounds super gross, it worked great, with tons of leftover. The onion is huge, amirite? I got a bigger one because I needed onion for an upcoming recipe.


In a large bowl combine all ingredients. Transfer to a greased 3 quart baking dish. Bake uncovered at 350 degrees for 1 hour or until bubbly and heated through. Pretty simple, huh? The following pictures(or lack there of)show the process!

I had taken a few pics of how I cut the ham, since this chunk was way more then what I needed. But I spose you can cut it however you want!

My awesome manual food processor! I always use it to chop onions now. Since I have no idea how to do it properly with a knife. That's why its called "Pampered Chef".

I tried an action shot, but I was also trying to deter my cat from jumping on the counter because he was trying to get some ham. So imagine me with a camera in one hand, onion container in the other and one leg in the air trying to block my cat from jumping on the counter. It was dangerous.

Beans are so nasty.

I love my wooden spoon. My mom got it for me and its just really fun to mix things with. Can't explain it really, it just is!

And well there you have it. My stupid camera didn't take the completed picture, but I hope you can get it. And I know its not a cute baking dish, but since I was taking it too someones house I didn't want to have her worrying about getting a glass dish back to me.

Here is a picture of it from the taste of home website.

And I will leave you with some pictures of my kitchen companion, Rufus.

When he isn't crawling under my step stool, trying to attack my feet, he is standing on it, trying to score some ham.

The look on his face says, "Mmmmm Ham."

Monday, January 9, 2012

Am I too Easy?

I noticed that a few of my recipes start with the word, "Easy". I like "Easy" recipes. But then again its not like a recipe would start with the words, "Hard" or "Difficult". But perhaps I should try something different soon.
Anyway, as you will see from the pictures, this was the last recipe I made in our old apartment, and it make me just a teensy bit sad. I miss that kitchen SO much. My new one is nice, but has NO counterspace. There are counters, but none that are very big. My husband keeps telling me one day he will build me a house, and I get to design the kitchen. I know this will likely happen in like 50 years, when he retires, but a girl can dream right? On with the recipe!

Easy Mexican Casserole


1 pound lean ground beef, 2 cups of salsa, 1(16 oz) can chili beans drained, 3 cups tortilla chips, 2 cups sour cream, 1(2 oz) can sliced black olives drained, 1/2 cup chopped green onion, 1/2 cup chopped fresh tomato, 2 cups shredded cheddar cheese

On all those cooking shows the chefs always have their ingredients in cute little bowls, already to go for them. Normally, I am just like, "Screw prepping these in cute bowls, just throw 'em in!" But since I am doing a blog, and taking pics, I figured I should put a little time into it. Just a little.


Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large skillet over medium-high heat, cook ground beef until no longer pink. Stir in salsa, reduce heat, and simmer 20 minutes, or until liquid is absorbed. Stir in beans, heat through.

Beans are so gross. I dislike all types of beans.

Spray a 9x13 inch baking dish with cooking spray. Spread crushed tortilla chips in bottom of dish.

The amount of 3 cups of chips, is subjective. Basically if you want a super crispy crust, use way more. Or less if that whats you want. I just eyed it up, and didn't crush them to tiny bits, as you can see. Its really up to you! Isn't cooking fun?

Then spoon beef mixture over chips. Spread sour cream over beef, sprinkle olives, green onions, and tomato over the sour cream. Top with cheese.

Bake in oven for 30 minutes, or until hot and bubbly.

Baah dah dah dah dah dah daaaah!!! The finished product! My husband loves this dish. He likes anything spicy and flavorful, so he loves this. I will take his word for it. Once again I will not eat this. Beans, olives, green onions, salsa chunks(I only like picante, not chunks), all things I don't like.
Well I hope whoever makes this will enjoy it. Its pretty fun to make, I like crushing the chips. Good way to relieve stress. Not the best way, but a good one. Well The Price is Right is on. I love that show. Gotta watch! Have a good week!