The Big Bang Theory, Pantry Staples
“Beefaroni” Pasta Bake
It can be said that I have very eclectic taste when it comes to television, I am an avid fan of period dramas, comedy, satire and even the odd country-style soap in the form of Heartbeat; my favourite comedy programme has to be The Big Bang Theory, which is an American sit-com and is just, in my humble opinion, hysterically funny and very witty. Now, The Big Bang Theory is very similar to Marmite, you either love it or hate it, there appears to be no middle ground here – you either “get it” or you don’t. When I first saw the programme I wasn’t that impressed, mainly due the fact that Malcolm was rolling around the floor laughing, and I never saw a full episode – it was only when he went away to work that I watched an entire episode and the characters started to “gel” with me, and ever since then I have been a Big Bang Theory fan.
I won’t bore you with a synopsis of the programme or a blow-by-blow description of the characters, but suffice to say there is a reason that I mention the programme today, and yes, it does have to do with food and a recipe! Basically, for those readers in the know, the connection comes from an episode when Raj thinks he may be deported back to India for outstaying his visa restrictions; as he ponders his fate in the university canteen, he laments about all the things he’ll miss if he goes back home to India and says…..” Oh Beefaroni, I think I will miss you the most”…..So, what is this amazing “beefaroni” that Raj is talking about? Well, it’s a famous tinned pasta product by Chef Boyardee that is basically macaroni cheese with beef! But, it is also a VERY popular family recipe that is made at home too, and is made with five main staple ingredients – minced beef, onions, passata (or chopped tomatoes), cheese and macaroni.
Beefaroni a fabulous meal to make for the family mid-week, it’s tasty, filling and is very thrifty on the housekeeping budget side too, so it’s a winning recipe on many counts, and I remember eating it when I lived in the States and I loved it as much Raj! So, when I was challenged to come up with something a little different by the Sainsbury’s Live Well For Less website, using the THREE main staples of by Sainsbury’s Passata , by Sainsbury’s onions and by Sainsbury’s British Beef Mince, this was the recipe I decided to create. It’s NOT “spag bol”, which we were asked NOT to recreate, but it is a pasta bake recipe that is easy to make and uses the three staple products perfectly. Think Macaroni Cheese with a meat and tomato sauce, and that’s what Beefaroni is essentially.
So, for today’s post, I bring you my Big Bang Theory Beefaroni, which can be made in one large baking dish, or in small casserole dishes, as you can see from my photos, which is perfect for portion control and the children will love their own pot of pasta too! It’s cheap and cheerful and you can freeze it, which means you can make a big (double) batch of this pasta and then freeze half for another time; allow it to defrost at room temperature and then microwave it or cover it with foil (or a casserole lid) and reheat it on the oven. If you are vegetarian, you can use “Quorn mince” for this recipe, which would also be very tasty.
That’s it for today, I’ll be back later in the week, I hope you all had a fabulous Easter break, and there’s not that much chocolate left in the house to tempt you! See you soon, Karen
Disclaimer: I was sent some supermarket vouchers from Sainsbury’s to participate in this “staples” challenge.