A friend and I were talking a while back about the luxury of eating a meal with our family at home and how a home-cooked meal is more of a rarity than commonplace. In fact, she said her son made a comment one night around the dinner table to the effect of, "Wow! Eating healthy is so good, Mom!" She said it struck her kind of funny as she looked at their main course of Poppy Seed Chicken spread across the table. Soul food? You bet. Healthy? Not so sure. But in his eyes, "eating healthy" meant just eating something that came from the fridge or oven in his very own house.
Can't you relate? I know we can, all too well. Two full-time working parents, active church involvement, multiple children with homework and extra-curricular activities... A from-scratch meal by dinner time?
EXCEPT when one has a recipe like this one. Seriously. If I can't make time to throw this together, which yields a fantastic hearty and delicious meal, I might add, then I need to pack it up and go home. Home, I tell ya.
Italian Beef is one of my favorite dishes that Mom fixes, and I just don't think about it until I walk into my parents' house, and the aroma meets me at the door. I love it, and Mom knows that, and so this last trip I made up north, she had it waiting on me. What a gift. I knew after eating it that night, I was going to make a conscientious effort to make it myself, so I could share it with you.
And just hold onto your hats, as I tell you about this recipe:
Four ingredients, NO prep work, and 18 hours in the crockpot - EIGHTEEN. Full-time working moms everywhere... this is your BFF. No joke.
Serve this up with Lays potato chips and a green salad or cold pasta dish... I'm telling you, coming home at the end of a long day never tasted so good.
Momma's Italian Beef
2 cans (10 1/4 oz) beef consomme
1 package Good Seasonings Italian salad dressing mix
1/2-1 jar (16 oz) pepperoncini peppers (depending on the spiciness you prefer)
1. Place ingredients in slow cooker and cook on low for 18 hours. Half-way through, turn meat inside pot.
If desired, serve on hoagie rolls and top with sauteed peppers, onions, and favorite white cheese. And don't forget an extra drizzle of juice!
Other ways to enjoy...
* Take to a potluck with thin provolone cheese slices. Place the cheese on the roll and top with hot beef to melt the cheese.
* To the roll, add a delicious slather of a little mayo and dried Italian seasoning herbs mixed together.
* Place a slice of your favorite cheese over the meat and pop under a broiler. Watch closely for slight browning and remove. Perfectly toasted. Beautifully melted.