Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Christmas Recipes

Today is the first day I’ve had to blog for about 10 days now as I’ve been busy working and getting ready for Christmas. I’ve spent the last two days cooking for the holiday this weekend. I’ve made Lasagna, Italian Beef, and Sloppy Joes. Recipes are included below. I found a really great sale on ground beef at Wal-Mart the other day. I found five pound packages marked down to $9.50, which makes them less than $2.00 a pound, so I was able to make two of these dishes rather inexpensively. 

These recipes are what one can truly call family favorites. Every year for as long as I can remember, the whole family would gather at my grandparent's home in Illinois for Christmas Eve. My grandmother always served the same dishes every year and it has now become one of those family traditions. 

Even though the miles separate us now, and those Christmas's are long gone, I still serve these same dishes to my family and when I do I am reminded of the times when I was a child. And the memories of those days live on in my heart and I hope that my family remembers Christmas like I do.



1 pound ground beef
2 cloves garlic, crushed
3 1/2 cups tomatoes
1 package dry spaghetti sauce mix
1/2 pound mozzarella cheese, sliced
1/2 cup Parmesan cheese, grated
2 teaspoons seasoned salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1 - 8 ounce can tomato sauce
1/2 pound lasagna noodles
1/2 pound cottage cheese


Brown meat in heavy skillet.
Add seasoned salt, garlic and pepper.
Simmer for 10 minutes
Stir in tomatoes, tomato sauce and spaghetti sauce mix.
Cover and simmer for 30 minutes.
Boil lasagna noodles in salted water until tender.
Drain and rinse.
Pour 1/3 of the meat sauce into a 12 x 8 x 2 baking dish.
Cover with lasagna noodles.
Arrange slices of mozzarella and cottage cheese over noodles.
Repeat the layers, ending with the meat sauce.
Sprinkle Parmesan cheese over the top.
Bake in a 350 degree oven for 20 minutes.

Italian Beef


6 pounds Sirloin Tip Roast
2 packages onion soup mix
Salt & pepper to taste
Water to cover roast
2 to 3 teaspoons oregano or to taste (I love this and use a lot!)
5-6 bell peppers, sliced
3 cups Beef Broth


Place meat and next 3 ingredients in pressure cooker.
Cook for about 1 1/2 to 2 hours.
Take meat out of pan and set aside to let cool.
Slice bell peppers into broth and add to pan.
Cover and cook peppers 1/2 hour on top of stove, on low heat.
Shred meat with two forks and put back in pan.
Cook on top of stove for 30 minutes more.
This is delicious served on fresh rolls. 

Sloppy Joes

My Mom and Dad loves these Sloppy Joes, and they are pretty economical to make. I made some for my Dad on Christmas Eve and the next day he said he wanted 100 more. So, I made him up a batch and wrapped each one individually, so he could put them in his freezer and eat one whenever he wanted. 


1 pound hamburger
1 onion (chopped)
3 bay leaves, whole (remove before serving)
1 garlic bud (chopped)
1/2 cup celery (chopped)
1 can tomatoes
1 can tomato paste
1/2 cup tomato ketchup
2 or 3 Tablespoons brown sugar
5 Tablespoons vinegar
2 Tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
1 teaspoon salt


Brown hamburger and onions together in skillet.
Drain well.
Add the next 10 ingredients and mix well.
Simmer on the stove top for 1 hour or until done.
Serve on hamburger buns.

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