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Italian Beef and Rice Casserole Recipe

Guest Author - Paula Laurita

If you’re racing against time you can create a healthy and quick meal with this recipe. Easy-to-make doesn’t mean fattening or flavorless.

Italian Beef and Rice Casserole

Ingredients

  • 1 pound lean ground beef
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 green bell pepper, diced
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 2 Tbs fresh basil, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 tsp fresh thyme, crumbled
  • 1 tsp black pepper, freshly ground
  • 1˝ cups water
  • 1 8 ounce can diced tomatoes
  • 1˝ cups white rice

Directions

  1. In a large skillet brown the ground beef over medium-high heat. Cook the beef until it is light brown.
  2. Drain any fat from the beef.
  3. Stir in the salt, green bell pepper, onion, basil, garlic, thyme, bay leaf, pepper, tomatoes (with juice), water, and rice.
  4. Bring the beef mixture to a boil.
  5. Reduce heat until the beef mixture is simmering. Cover the skillet and cook for 15 minutes.
  6. Remove the skillet from the heat and allow to stand for 5 minutes. The rice should be tender when done.

Note: When using dried herbs instead of fresh divide the recipe amount by 1/3. For example, if using dried basil the amount should be 2 tsp.
Cooking with ground beef calls for food safety procedures. Following these steps will help ensure that your food will be friend and not foe:

  • Try and pick up your meat products next to last. This is a bit difficult to do without some planning. Many supermarkets are not designed with this in mind.
  • Wash down all surfaces and utensils before using. Use only clean cloths or paper towels to minimize cross contamination.
  • Wash your hands before handling food. Wash your hands after handling raw food. Wash your hands between handling different types of food. Oh, did I mention, 'Wash your hands'? This one act will dramatically cut down the chance of getting food poisoning.
  • E. Coli is present in all cuts of beef, but most often in ground beef. Ground beef must be cooked until the internal temperature reaches a minimum of 160°F to ensure that dangerous bacteria are destroyed.

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Content copyright © 2013 by Paula Laurita. All rights reserved.
This content was written by Paula Laurita. If you wish to use this content in any manner, you need written permission. Contact Cinzia Aversa for details.

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