Thursday, November 28, 2013

Celebrate Thanksgiving no matter the circumstances: Thanksgiving Day Goulash

On Wednesday, November 23rd 2004 as families began their holiday commute, the Illinois wind was blowing and a wet snow was heavily falling from the sky.  It didn’t take very long for the 12 inches of snow to knock out the power at my parents’ rural home, 3 miles from the closest town. 

Dad set up the generator and Mom prayed the electricity would be repaired quickly as not to interrupt our Thanksgiving.  The next morning, still without power, mom stuck the turkey in a snowbank and searched through the pantry-determined to have her adult children home for Thanksgiving.  Lighting the gas stove, Mom boiled water and began browning the hamburger as she made a family favorite-goulash.  

The roads were cleared in time for all the kids to arrive for the noon feast, but the power lines were so damaged, electricity would not be gracing this holiday weekend until Sunday afternoon.  Our family of five helped themselves to goulash and veggies and played cards until evening, when dad hooked up a shop light and we all decorated the Christmas tree.  There may not have been pumpkin pie, but it may have been one of our best Thanksgivings ever.

Mom’s Thanksgiving Goulash (serves 8)

1 lb ground beef or turkey
1 med onion-diced
1 green pepper-diced
1 large can diced tomatoes OR 2lbs. Fresh tomatoes-diced
1 13oz box macaroni or penne
Fresh Parmesan
salt & pepper
Italian Seasonings

Directions: Brown ground beef or turkey in skillet, add onions and green pepper-cook until softened.  Add entire can of tomatoes or fresh tomatoes with juices to skillet and add Italian seasonings-to taste, cover and turn heat to low.  Allow tomatoes to steam for 3 minutes.  Salt and pepper to taste.

Cook Pasta as directed by box. Mix noodles and tomato mixture in large bowl.  Top with Fresh Parmesan. 

Serve with Garlic Bread (If you have electricity).

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