BUSY DAY DINNER
From Emma Lane
Busy days we look for easy but tasty quick main dishes. This is a family recipe that is sure to please both parents and kids (or grandchildren). The young ones will love the mac & cheese and barely notice they are eating veggies. Easy to add side dishes to round out the meal without much fussing. Serve ice cream for dessert.
Quick & Easy Mac and Cheese Casserole
1 small carrot, grated
⅓ cup frozen green peas
½ lb. ground beef
1 box mac & cheese
½ can cream of chicken soup
Melt butter in a frying pan. When the foam subsides, sauté onion, carrot, and peas until onion is translucent. Spoon mixture into a microwaveable dish.
Use the same pan to fry ground beef until browned. Be sure to break meat into small pieces. Drain fat.
Cook mac & cheese per package directions.
Combine meat, mac & cheese with vegetables. Stir soup gently into mixture. (Save other half of soup for eggs next morning.)
Warm casserole in microwave oven for two minutes or until steaming. Serve with green salad.
This casserole dish may be prepared the day before and refrigerated for easy warm-up.
Here are some tasty side options we enjoy with the casserole:
Apple slices dotted with yogurt or sour cream
Apple sauce with cinnamon
How about a peek at one of my cozy mysteries written under my pseudo name Janis Lane?
A blizzard blows in big-city crimes which spill into the peaceful small town of Hubbard, New York, catching the attention of Detective Kevin Fowler and staff. What unusual acts engage the Secret Service with the local cops? A young man is found badly beaten in the heated greenhouse of the Young Family Plant Nursery. Early spring melt reveals a sinister vehicle with a deadly cargo, even as the master of the greenhouse welcomes part-time alumni.
Romance swirls, tumbles, and produces surprising changes among the group of friends at Buddy and Rita’s diner. Beverly hires a young, ambitious reporter to work at the growing newspaper and starts a new adventure of her own, while Kevin watches over the townspeople of Hubbard. The mystery of a toxic skunk is finally routed by troublesome out-of-towners. An unexpected wedding shocks everyone but the Young Family. Spring has arrived and May is in full bloom in the Western New York small-town Americana, as another beautiful bride walks toward the flower-laded bower under the approving eyes of a group of fond friends.
She lives in Western New York where winter is snowy, spring arrives with rave reviews, summer days are long and velvet, and fall leaves are riotous in color. At long last she enjoys the perfect bow window for her desk where she is treated to a year-round panoramic view of nature. Her computer opens up a fourth fascinating window to the world. Her patient husband is always available to help with a plot twist and encourage Emma to never quit. Her day job is working with flowers at Herbtique and Plant Nursery, the nursery she and her son own.
Look for information about writing and plants on Emma’s new website. Leave a comment or a gardening question and put a smile on Emma’s face.