Lazy Recipe, Lazy Post

This past weekend was a holiday weekend, a “four day” if you live any where near a military installation.  (if you live near a mental facility, it would be a “96”…as in “96 hour hold”…but I digress…) I am left, in the aftermath of this delicious time with my family, wondering, “Where did the time go?  What did we do?”

this is a random photo of my running shades and a water bottle. that's it.

Time flies when you’re having fun.  🙂

We went hiking on Friday, on Saturday we all helped out with an FRG fundraiser, on Sunday we went to The Big City, and Monday we cleaned and played and generally hung around the house.  96 hours of time well spent.

Friday, after our hike, we were all pretty hungry.  It was only 2 miles, but we were out on the trail for three hours.  The kids found bugs and rocks and sticks.  There were hills and trees to climb.  We needed a big dinner, but the day was almost over when we left the State Park.  Hubby said, “I want some roast beef with au jus.” It was 5pm.

Yyyyyyyeah…sometimes I think my family has a little too much faith in my magical culinary skills.

...it was positively magical. 🙂 Thanks, guys!

So here’s what I did:

I stopped at the grocery store and bought:

1 can of ready-made beef gravy

1 can of (good!) beef stock

1 can ready-made onion soup

1 pkg dried (generic!) onion soup mix

2# thick-sliced deli roast beef

1 carton of baby bella mushrooms

1 large bottle of Ranch Dressing

It cost me about $20.  I had home made chicken stock in the freezer, but not beef.  Lesson learned: make some beef stock, too.

When I got Home:

(first I took a shower…I thought you should know.)

I dumped the gravy, the stock, the can of onion soup, one bottle of Guinness, a bay leaf, the mushrooms, and the roast beef into my largest cast-iron pot.  I left it on the stove top, medium-low heat, until the potatoes were ready.

For the potatoes: 

I never peel potatoes, so I scrubbed them, diced them, boiled them for mashed potatoes.(they were in my pantry already).  After they were cooked and drained, I added a healthy squirt (yes…”healthy squirt” is an exact unit of measurement in my kitchen) of ranch dressing, a package of onion soup mix, half a stick of butter, a cup of heavy cream, and 1/2 c of dijon mustard.  Mash and mix, mix and mash.  Salt to taste.

Also found in the pantry: some Tastefully Simple “bountiful beer bread” mix.  I made it with a bottle of Harp, shook in some “garlic, garlic” (also from Tastefully Simple), and then followed the directions on the box. The kids and the hubby tore into this stuff like zombies on brains. 🙂

this is a random picture of tiny toad stools. that's it.

In less than 45 minutes, we had beef with some sort of au jus-ish stuff, mashed potatoes that tasted deliciously of horseradish and ranch, and warm bread.  Ta-da. Feeling lazy?  Insanely hungry for meat? Here ya go.

Note: if you know you’re going to be feeling lazy in a advance, I strongly suggest making the beef stuff a day ahead and leaving it to rest in the fridge overnight.  Holy cow! (pun totally intended) it was even better the next day! The downside: because of all the store-bought canned stuff, there is a lot of sodium.  If you need to watch your salt, there are low-sodium alternatives to most soups.

(there aren’t pictures.  Like I said…lazy!)

WW points plus:

(I passed on the bread)

three slices of the roast beef= 5pts

1/2c au jus= 2pts

1c potatoes= 8pts

15 points plus for the meal, 14 activity points earned for the hike.

Awesome!

this is a random photo of my Grandma's old silo. That's it.
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