Tuesday, October 19, 2010

comforting beef and noodles

There are some days when you want fancy.  On those days, you might braise some pork and whip up a fancy schmancy chocolate cake to impress some guests.  Or maybe you just feel like creating something fabulous and uncorking some wine to enjoy with your husband while you watch Everybody Loves Raymond episodes for the thousandth time.

I've been there...I understand.

But there are other days...days when you want something easy and economical...days when you want your belly to be full and you don't care what the meal actually looks like.

Those days call for comfort food.  Hmmmmmm....comfort food.

We finally had some fall weather this weekend, and I felt like comfort food.  Normally when I get that craving, I make chili or cornbread or chicken fried steak.

This time, though, I wanted to try something new.  I pulled out my Gooseberry Patch Flavors of Fall cookbook and found it...beef & noodles.  It was simple, made a zillion servings, and wouldn't break my budget.  Don't you just love meals like that?

First, you sprinkle a 3.5 pound roast with salt and pepper and place it in a slow cooker.  Add 3 tablespoons of vinegar and 3/4 cup of water, and let it cook on low for 8 hours.  Easy, easy, easy...

Once it's cooked, shred the meat and place it in a stock pot or Dutch oven.   I love how tender it is after slow cooking all day!

Add the juices from the slow cooker to the beef along with about 48 oz. of beef broth (I used one box and one can) and 1/2 cup of butter or margarine.  You could obviously omit or reduce the amount of butter to cut down on fat...I don't think it would make too much of a difference.

Bring everything to a boil, and then reduce the heat to let it simmer.

Meanwhile, whisk 3 tablespoons of flour into 3/4 cup cold water.  Gradually stir this mixture into the pot and bring to a boil.  Let it boil for about 5 minutes or so...long enough to let it slightly thicken. 

Then, throw in a 16 oz. package of noodles.  You don't even have to cook them first!  Easy, easy, easy...

Let everything simmer until your noodles are soft.  Voila!  Comfort food.

This dish isn't much to look at, I know.  It isn't even full of crazy spices, although you could add them if you like.  It's just simple, warm, filling, and delicious...and I loved it.

Topped with a dollop of sour cream and served alongside a salad, this dish was the perfect way to ring in the fall.  :-)

Before we get to the recipe, some other comfort food recipes you may enjoy...

Beef and Noodles
Adapted from Gooseberry Patch's Flavors of Fall

salt and pepper to taste
3 T. vinegar
3/4 cup warm water
48 oz. beef broth
1/2 cup butter
3 T. flour
3/4 cup cold water
16 oz. uncooked noodles

Sprinkle salt and pepper on the roast and then place in a slow cooker.  Cover with vinegar and warm water and cook for 8 hours on low.  Remove beef from slow cooker and shred.  Place in a large pot or Dutch oven along with the juices from the slow cooker, beef broth, and butter.  Bring to a boil; reduce heat and simmer.  In a separate bowl, combine flour and cold water.  Gradually stir into stockpot and boil for 5 minutes.  Add noodles and simmer until noodles are soft.  Serves 10.

Gluten-free variation - use gluten free flour and pasta
IBS variation - use chicken breasts and chicken broth

Note on nutrition: the stats aren't wonderful in terms of fat and calories, primarily because of the beef roast (over 500 calories and 30g fat per serving).  That's why I'm eating very small servings and kicking myself for not calculating the nutritional information before I made it.  Argh!  If you are concerned with cutting fat, I would suggest cutting down the size of the roast that you use.  That's what I would have done if I were smart...

PS - Gooseberry Patch didn't ask me to review their book or this recipe...I'm just doing this because I love it!  Hope you love it, too!


  1. That looks totally yummy! I haven't had beef and noodles in forever. Gonna have to work it in soon!!

  2. Love your cute Mickey and Minnie mug!

    I also love meals like this. I make the same kind of meat and serve it with rice. Never thought about trying pasta, but I'll have to use that sometime and see if I like it that way too. Thanks for the idea.

  3. Yum! It does look tasty and comforting ~ I've been craving beef stroganoff lately and this reminds me of that.

  4. Wonderful recipe for comfort food. I love the Minnie and Mickey cup!

  5. Looks SOOOO cozy, which couldn't be MORE PERFECT for this time of year! Love it!

  6. I wish I had a big bowl of your beef and noodles right now. I will have to give your recipe a try, thank you for sharing it.

  7. So glad to have found your site! Great recipes. I'm anxious to try your chocolate cake recipe.... and I LOVE beef and noodles. Looking forward to being a regular reader...

  8. Beef & noodles...perfect comfort food! Yumm!!

  9. I make something like this every year when we finally get below 95 degrees in the winter. My family would eat anything mixed with egg noodles. Great meal to feel comforted and cozy.

    Plan B

  10. Your so right!! Somedays call for easy comfort food, and wow this hit's the spot!! Delicious. I just love Gooseberry patch cookbooks.

  11. Love your mickey mouse mug... too cute! I have a few crockpot recipes I will share with you too! So, yummy! Thanks for sharing!

  12. Haha compared to my mom's beef and noodles, that is swimming in meat. Our beef and noodles was more to get rid of the leftover bits and pieces.

    Maybe it's tradition in my house, but serve it over mashed potatoes, and sprinkle celery salt over the top. Mmm. Maybe an acquired taste?


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