Goulash / American Chop Suey

  • 1 pound ground beef.
  • Almost an entire box of ziti (or your favorite pasta)
  • 1 Can Tomato Soup
  • 1 or 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • Ground Black Pepper
  • Get a nice big pot of water boiling with some salt (if it tastes like tears then it’s probably salted about right), although, the soup has plenty of salt in it too, so you could salt the water a bit less in this case if you want.
  • Brown beef in pan.
  • Around this time also put your pasta in the water (which should be good an boiling by this point)
  • When the beef is about 80% cooked, add in the garlic.  You don’t want the garlic to brown, but you do want to sweat it a bit.  Might as well throw a few grinds of black pepper in there as well.
  • When fully cooked, remove beef and drain off excess fat.  You can put the beef back into the pan to keep warm if you want while you wait for the pasta to cook.  If you’ve timed it well, it should be pretty close to done.
  • When the pasta’s done, drain it and then add back into the big boiling pot.  Add the beef mixture to this pot, as well as the entire can of tomato soup.  Season with additional black pepper if you want.
  • Mix well and serve immediately with some garlic bread of something (I like it best when it’s screaming hot).
To borrow some words from my old roommate whose father cooked meals for a firehouse, this is one of those things that can be cooked “hot and a lot” for a group of people.  Super simple, easy, and fast.