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Print this Recipe    Macaroni Beef Casserole

Macaroni Beef Casserole

Ingredients
---------------
1.5 lbs ground beef or turkey
1 leek cleaned and thinly sliced
2 15 oz cans stewed tomatoes
1 15 oz can plain tomato sauce
1 lb any type pasta (rigatoni or ziti sizes work best)
12 - 16 oz shredded cheese
2 tbsp cooking oil
1 tsp butter or margarine
1 tsp red pepper flakes (optional)
1 can dark red kidney beans rinsed and drained (optional)

Directions
-----------
1) Cook pasta according to package directions using the minimum cooking time (al-dente). Drain and rinse with cold water and set aside.

2) Saute the leeks in butter and oil until translucent. Add the ground beef and brown completely.

3) Combine the pasta, cooked meat, stewedtomatoes, tomato sauce, cheese(s) and beans (if used).

4) Salt and pepper to taste and pour into a non-stick baking pan or a lightly greased glass baking dish.

5) Cover with foil and bake one hour at 350 degrees.

6) Remove foil and bake an additional 10-15 minutes to brown the top.
Serve with crusty bread.

Note on pasta: Adjust the baking time according to the size of
the pasta. If you use smaller pasta like elbows and bow ties, cut
the total baking time to 45-55 minutes to keep the noodles from
getting too mushy.

Note on cheeses and tomatoes: Any hearty flavorful cheese will
do. Pick the stewed tomato flavors according to the cheese. We
sometimes use a pre-shredded pizza cheese mix with Italian-flavored
stewed tomatoes or a Mexican cheese mix with Mexican-flavored
tomatoes.

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