Jeff has been asking for a pasta dish and I finally worked one in tonight with this Meat Goulash with Macaroni that we made for dinner. You can substitute whichever short pasta your heart desires, but we used a favorite mixed-grain macaroni that is full of fiber and protein. After we dropped the pasta (the brand we use actually comes in just shy of a pound, but it doesn't matter too much in the end), we started crisping up a couple slices worth of chopped bacon. Yes, bacon... a hint of salt, a bit smoky and so hard to not pick out the bits as they cooked up. Mmm!
To those naughty bits of bacon, we tossed in a combination of ground pork along with lean ground sirloin to lighten the dish up a bit, yet still retain some depth of flavor. Once the duo of meat browned, we seasoned the crumbles with smoked sweet paprika and tossed in some chopped garlic and onion to soften. To intensify the tomato base, we added concentrated tomato paste to the skillet full of meat to let it cook and caramelize the paste, allowing the flavor to blossom. Meanwhile, we puréed a few roasted red bell peppers and stirred them into the mix, along with a couple cups of rich beef broth, and allowed the mixture to simmer for a couple minutes. To add a silky feel, sour cream is added to smooth out the sauce and the dish is finished off by stirring in the cooked multi-grain macaroni and a handful of chopped parsley. The original recipe did call for the addition of fresh dill, but neither of us are too crazy about dill and beef together, so we decided against it... if that appeals to you though, toss in a small handful of dill too!
Meat Goulash with Macaroni