Tuesday, October 7, 2008

One Meal Three Ways - Ground Beef with Spinach and Mushrooms

Start out with ground beef, spinach and mushrooms rolled up
in a spinach-lined tortilla.

When I pick up our newspapers and see the words “collapse,” “crisis," and “catastrophe" (and that’s just on the comics page), it’s time for a little belt tightening. Or as my friend Altadena Hiker says, we need to exercise “fooduciary responsibility.”

That starts with letting no food go to waste. After all, leftovers, are not the fiscal equivalent of recycling bad debt. With a little ingenuity and pre-planning, their stock can go up, even when the Dow Jones is sinking faster than a failed souffle.

Take for example, one of my favorite dishes, ground beef with spinach and mushrooms. I’m a big fan of the leafy green vegetable. My family – not so much.
So when I cook up a skillet of ground beef with spinach and mushrooms, leftovers are a part of the equation.

With a little improvisation, I can take the base for the ground beef with spinach and mushrooms and create three completely different dishes:
  • lunch in a pita
  • dinner with penne pasta
  • breakfast with eggs

What you’ll need:
For base:
- Red onion
- Minced garlic
- 1 lb. ground beef
- 2 tsp. curry powder
- ½ lb. sliced mushrooms
- 1 bunch of spinach

For pasta topping:
- ¼ C. marinara sauce
- Penne pasta (or any pasta you prefer)

For Eggs Florentine
- 3 eggs
- Freshly grated parmesan cheese

Meal 1: LUNCH

1) Brown one pound of ground beef with red onion and three minced garlic cloves.

2) When beef is still slightly pink, add approximately ½ pound of sliced mushrooms and sauté for about two minutes.

3) Drain excess grease.
4) Throw in enough spinach leaves to cover top of meat mixture. Stir, reduce heat, add lid and let simmer for approximately 3 minutes, stirring occasionally.

6) Take out 2/3 of the mixture and save for later.

7) Add curry to taste. I use about two teaspoons.
8) Serve in a pita pocket or a flour tortilla lined with fresh spinach leaves.

Top with a dollop of sour cream if you like. Roll up the tortilla and congratulate
yourself for preparing the first of three great meals.

Heat up the leftover beef and spinach with a little marinara sauce and toss over the pasta of your choice.

I had a small container of penne pasta with marinara sauce in the freezer, so I was technically having double leftovers. I think I get extra credit.


1) Add a few more fresh spinach leaves to the leftover meat mixture.
2) In a separate bowl, whisk three eggs, a little milk and salt and pepper.
3) Add to meat mixture.

4) Scramble mixture, top with a little grated parmesan cheese and serve.

A hearty, yummy easy eggs Florentine

What are you doing to exercise "fooduciary responsibility"?


Anonymous said...

got my shopping list; I'm going to make these puppies. (I planted spinach this week, but it's so hot and they're very unhappy.)

Anonymous said...

I could do that! When you purchase curry, do you have to go to a specialty store? Are their different kinds of curry? If so, what would be the best selection if one is NOT fond of having their eyeballs pop out of their head? I love the look of your garden.

Susan C said...

AH How nice to be growing spinach. I'm going to plant some swiss chard.

PA I'm afraid I don't use any special curry - just the super market variety. I have salivated over the offerings in the Penzes spice catalog. If you don't have curry, a little cumin and turmeric also works well in the lunch dish.

Anonymous said...

Don't know if this is anything different from supermarket curry, but I get mine from an Armenian grocery store. They have rows of spices and the packaging dates. And spices that are fun to say, like Fenugreek

Anonymous said...

Well, I did a version last night. Instead of curry, I used a packet of Taco Bell seasoning. Yes, I admit it! A white onion (instead of red) left over sliced potatoes and a 1/2 can of pinto beans. Right, and I used ground turkey. I will be eating it for lunch.

Cafe Observer said...

SC, any neg feedback from the people at the Fraiche rest when u took out the cam 2 shoot pics?

Did you use flash inside?

Cafe Observer said...

"I am very disillusioned with Pasadena dining."

Depends on where u go, of course. Hmmm. what do u mean exactly, etc?

Susan C said...

PA Good for you for taking the "recipe" and making it your own. (I put recipe in quotes because I don't really use one.) It sounds yummy.

Cafe: No, Fraiche didn't have a problem with my taking pictures of their staff. I think I turned the flash off.

And, yes, I am disillusioned with Pasadena dining. I recently returned to BrenArt since it has new ownership and a new chef. I do not feel the need to ever go back.

I'm open to your Pasadena dining suggestions in all price ranges.

Anonymous said...

in search for medicinal uses of mushrooms, i came across your blog.

your meals must taste great! i like the creative cooking. spinach and mushrooms are a great combination to get vitamins and nutrients.

please visit www.MushroomPharm.com to learn and share stories about medicinal value of mushrooms.

West Coast Grrlie Blather said...

This looks so yummy, inexpensive, and easy. Yay for you!

sj said...

ohhh yummy! And great ideas to strech the budget!

Cafe Observer said...

SC, 1 place i went 2 2day close 2 Pasadena (Eagle Rock) is Auntie Em's Kitchen on Eagle Rock Blvd.

Casual, good food, some is organic, breakfast, bakery/cupcakes, lunch.

I'm gonna try 2 go outta my way a bit to eat there again. So try it. You may like it.

Susan C said...

I rest my case, CO. You've just recommended an Eagle Rock (not Pasadena) restaurant.

I've heard good things about Auntie Em's. Now I'll definitely have to try it on your recommendation.

Cafe Observer said...

Well, Daisy Mint in Pasadena I've heard almost all good reviews about. It's 2-3 blks east of PCC on Colorado. Sorta Asian fusion.

And, AunDeli Cafe, next to the Ice House comedy club, for organic Japanese is very good, fresh, & different than most Japanese rests around here.

Pastries? EuroPane on Colorado 2blks east of Lake. Go early for best selection/freshness. Sandwiches are very good also.

I met the new Chef of BrenArt a few mths past. You didn't like it?

Just a couple things to ck out.

Susan C said...

Daisy Mint is on my list of places to try. I just discovered AunDeli when I went to the Ice House last Sunday. I liked the look of it. And, YES, Europane is one of my favorite places in town.

Susan C said...

BrenARt: At one point, my two friends and I were the ONLY ONES in the restaurant, so you'd think we'd get good service. Nope. The waiter was MIA for most of the meal.

Food was just a cut above mediocre.

Anonymous said...

You two need a restaurant review radio show. Unfortunately, looks like it would have to air at midnight.

Anonymous said...

Oh, and Susan, did you see Blue Kitchen's recipe for meatloaf? It has blue cheese and hot Italian sausage.

Cafe Observer said...

You know, SC & K et al, if you gals think what u conjure up is genuinely tasty, then u should open a home cafe for us bloggers.

You do de cooking, we'll come over, do de eating- and make a monetary contribution, of course!

It wouldn't surprise me if you guys turned out 2 have the best "restaurant" in AltaDena.

Bleu cheeze in meatloaf??

Susan C said...

Meatloaf with sausage and blue cheese sounds outrageously delicious. My mouth is watering as I type this.

Yea, CO should do a show for hungry insomniacs.

Since I've been cooking more at home, I have become a picky, picky, picky restaurant eater. Cooking for friends and family is fun, but cooking for a living wouldn't be.

Cafe Observer said...

Ok SC. let us know if u change your mind re my home cafe idea. After a while dog food gets kinda boring 4 me.

At least your food pics look appetizing.

Patrizzi Intergarlictica said...

Ground meat, spinach, mushrooms plus scrambled eggs equals a Joe's Special. At least, that's what we've always called it.

I'm available for hire as personal cook for whoever has got some greenbacks, btw.

That's an Italian SF Joe and not the moronic rightwing plant unlicensed plumber Joe. (Sorry got crazy right there)

Susan C said...

Well, I'll be - I made Joe's Special. I've never had it in a restaurant and didn't know it had a name.

Yaniv said...

Nice! I have to try this next week.

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