A blog by ordinary people about living an extraordinary life
Growing up there were a few events during the year that I always looked forward to. One was the annual Pine Wood Derby when I was a Cub Scout. I loved getting the car kit box, that block of wood with 4 wheels and a few small nails. My dad and I would spend time planning how to carve out not just a great looking car, but hopefully a car that would speed down the ramp. We never did master how to build a speedy car but we still had a great time at the Derby every year. And in our Troop, the Derby also consisted of a Pot-Luck Dinner. And part of that dinner was always a big pot of American chop suey. It has been many years since I have had American chop suey, and this recipe brought back all the flavor memories, as well as the Pine Wood Derby memories.
Ingredients (this recipe makes 2 servings)
In a large stockpot warm the oil over medium heat. Add the onion and cook for 5-7 minutes, until softened. Add in the pepper and cook for another 5 minutes. Season with salt, pepper, paprika, garlic powder and fennel seeds. Mix in the tomato paste and cook for 2-3 minutes. Add in the ground beef and cook until browned. Add the canned tomatoes, breaking up with a wooden spoon as they cook. Bring to a low simmer and cook for 15-20 minutes. Meanwhile, in a large pot, bring salted water to a boil. Add in 4 ounces of gluten-free pasta and cook as directed. Do not drain the pasta, but rather transfer the cooked pasta to the sauce with a spider strainer or large slotted spoon. Toss the pasta in the sauce to coat. Serve alongside a salad of arugula and chopped almonds. Note on the pasta: There are several options for gluten-free pasta that you can find at your local grocery store. For this recipe I tried the Bionaturae brand. This pasta is a blend of rice, potato and soy. As with other gluten-free pastas I have tried, I found that the key is having a robustly favored sauce to coat the pasta with.