Tuesday, February 13, 2007

"Favorite Recipes of Home Economics Teachers - Casseroles" - Everybody's Favorite Hamburger Pie

Date I made this recipe: February 10, 2007

Favorite Recipes of Home Economics Teachers – Casseroles – Including Bread
Published by: Favorite Recipes Press, Inc.
© 1965

Recipe: Everybody’s Favorite Hamburger Pie

I knew that this recipe would be a hit when I noted that no less than 18 Home Economics teachers from around the country submitted this recipe. Eighteen Home Economics teachers cannot be wrong. Well, okay, they were wrong to have us 7th graders sew a sleeveless blouse (with interfacing) that not only was a major disaster since I didn’t know how to sew but also garnered me a D+ (What happened to potholders or aprons??). Naturally, the shame didn’t end with the grade: we had to wear our blouses to school after they were finished. The horror…..

But bless their hearts, the instructors were spot on when it came to their recipe selection for the cooking portion of our program. For the record, I earned A’s in those segments and boy, was I relieved.

While all my sewing efforts hit the trash bin a long time ago, I still have the note cards that I wrote up with all my 7th grade (focus on breakfast) and 8th grade (focus on lunch with emphasis on soups and casseroles) recipes on them. And sure enough, there it is on a weathered card from over 30 years ago – Hamburger Casserole - using the same ingredients as the one I made from this cookbook. I’m seriously going to cry….

This recipe is really simple and was a hearty meal for a cold winter evening. Minnesota is such a weird state—two weeks ago, the temperature spiked near 40. Naturally, I washed my car as did everyone in the state as evidenced by the ridiculous line at my local Wash Me car wash. (Don’t everybody run at once…)

But winter is fickle and so one week later, we began the first of what turned out to be ten days in a row of below-zero weather. This is not unusual mind you, but given the warm weather we’d been having this year, it caught us off guard. But not to worry, the temperature climbed to 6 above the other day and we were back to walking around with jackets open and gloves off. We’re just weird that way. After experiencing below-zero temperatures, anything above zero seems like a heat wave.

And so it came to pass on this cold, winter night that I made this. I omitted the monosodium glutamate since it was optional and since nobody cooks with it any more but included the A-1 sauce which added a bit of tang.

Everybody’s Favorite Hamburger Pie – Serves 6 to 8
1 medium onion, chopped
1 lb. ground beef
1 T. A-1 sauce (opt.)
½ t. monosodium glutamate (opt.)
Salt and pepper
2-2 ½ c. cooked green beans, drained
1 can tomato soup
5 medium potatoes, cooked
½ c. warm milk
1 egg, beaten
½ - 1 c. grated Cheddar Cheese (opt.)

Saute onion until golden in small amount of fat. Add meat, sauce, monosodium glutamate, salt and pepper; brown. Mix in beans and soup. Pour into greased 1 ½ -quart casserole. Mash potatoes; add milk, egg and seasonings to taste. Mix well. Spoon mounds of potatoes on meat mixture. Cover with cheese if desired. Bake at 350 for 30 minutes. NOTE: Instant mashed potatoes may be used if desired.

NOTE: I love kitchen gadgets and so finally broke down and bought a potato ricer and people, I am in heaven. I’ve never made such creamy potatoes before! I must have a potato cookbook around here someplace…..

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