Disclosure: This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. As always, all opinions are mine alone.
Back when I was growing up, my family structure was quite different from the one I’ve created with my husband. Back then, both of my parents worked outside of the home, and (depending what part of my childhood we are discussing) my dad often worked various and random hours in his retail job. I may not have mentioned it before, but I was an only child growing up so when my parents made a large meal we could stretch it for days. One of my family favorites I remember most vividly was this goulash my parents would mix up. It was sort of like spaghetti, but with different noodles and contained a lot of random things we had in the house. Ground beef or turkey, or maybe even some Italian sausage, a lot of different veggies and spaghetti sauce customized with their very own combination of favorite seasonings and spices.
I remember shortly after D-Man was born and we were struggling financially, I would look through the kitchen and we had just a little of this and a little of that. I recall trying to figure out just how to make a meal out of it all, and then I remembered that childhood meal and came up with my very own pot of goulash for the first time. My family LOVED it and everyone was coming back for seconds. Since then, this big pot has become tradition, and even with my big family it leaves enough for leftovers – which is always a win for me. Over the years this has turned into a family favorite of our own and I’ve perfected it in my own way. This is the perfect meal for busy weeknights when kids have homework, practice, parents are tired and there’s a long night left of checking homework, bath-times and bedtime stories. We’ve added our favorite vegetables and spices, but this is definitely a meal that you can customize based on what’s in your cabinets. Althought I often used canned or frozen items, I look forward to growing my own vegetables and herbs and using them for this as well. It’s perfect for cleaning out the cupboards or refrigerator before going grocery shopping, and with the amount of veggies I add and the use of Heinz Classico Family Favorites Traditional Sauce there’s an additional 1/2 cup of vegetables per serving, so I don’t feel any guilt for using a jarred sauce instead of my homemade sauce that takes hours to simmer. The ingredients are short and sweet and I can pronounce them all, and the taste is magnificent. I just whip up some easy garlic bread while the noodles are boiling and the sauce is simmering and we have an instant meal!
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- 16 ounces of ground turkey (or ground beef/Italian sausage)
- 1 small yellow onion, chopped
- 4-5 cloves of garlic, minced
- spices and seasonings (I typically use salt, pepper, Italian seasoning, red pepper flakes, basil, and celery seed, but this is really based on your tastes and favorite flavors.)
- 1-2 teaspoons red wine vinegar
- 4 ounce can chopped green chiles, undrained
- 1 14 ounce can of diced stewed tomatoes, undrained
- 2 cups chopped spinach
- 1 can yellow corn (drained), or 2 cups fresh or frozen corn
- 1/2 cup sliced mushrooms
- 2 ounce jar of diced pimientos, drained
- 1/2 cup chopped black olives
- 1/2 large green bell pepper, chopped
- 12 ounce package of rainbow rotini, cooked and drained
Garlic Bread Ingredients:
- 1 French Bread, fresh from the bakery
- 2-3 tablespoons butter or margarine
- 1/4 teaspoon garlic salt
- 1/4 teaspoon Italian seasoning
- 1/4 teaspoon Parmesan cheese
- extra virgin olive oil, drizzled
Begin by browning the meat in a large pot. Once the meat is almost cooked through, add your seasonings so they cook well into the meat. Add the onions and lightly saute while meat continues to brown. In the last minute or two, add the garlic.
Once the meat is browned and the onion and garlic are soft and fragrant, deglaze the pan with the red wine vinegar.
Stir well, then add the green chiles, the tomatoes with the liquid in the can and the chopped spinach. Stir it all up.
While the sauce is simmering, prepare your noodles as directed. This is also when you prepare the garlic bread. Preheat your oven to 350, slice the bread down the middle, and spread the butter or margarine all over the inside of each bread halve. Sprinkle with garlic salt, then the Italian seasonings. Top with a bit of Parmesan, then drizzle the olive oil over. Once the oven is heated, place in over for about 10-12 minutes. Just until the crust is slightly crunchy and the bread has a nice golden color.
Drain the noodles and add them to the sauce. You can use whatever noodles you like, it doesn’t have to be rotini. You can use elbow macaroni, shells, penne or whatever you like. I prefer the rainbow rotini, the noodles are a perfect texture and the color adds to all the colorful veggies already in the sauce.
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