Ground Beef … Soup, Rice Bowls and Burritos

For the last few months, I’ve backlogged a number of new recipes I’ve tried and old recipes I’ve repeated with slight changes which I’m posting below. The theme to anchor these dishes … lean ground beef was used for each recipe.

Cabbage Roll Soup – This is a new one. Shredded coleslaw mix was used as the base for this delicious soup. The recipe used elements from several recipes I found on line with substitutions designed to use things I had in my pantry and/or that I liked.

Cabbage Roll Soup – serves 8

1 tbsp vegetable oil
1/2 lb/227 gm lean ground beef (or pork or ground turkey)
1/2 medium yellow onion, finely diced *
1 large carrot, chopped (1 1/4 cups)
2 1/2 cups coleslaw mix
1 cloves garlic, grated or finely mince
4 cups beef broth
1 cup tomato/spaghetti sauce
1 cup diced tomatoes
1 cup pureed tomatoes
~1 tbsp packed light brown sugar (to taste to cut back on acidity of the tomatoes)
1/2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1/2 tsp dried paprika
1/2 tsp dried oregano or 1/2 tbsp chopped fresh
1/2 tsp dried thyme or 1/2 tbsp chopped fresh
1 bay leaf
4-6 tbsp raw long-grain white rice
salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
water, as needed

1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
1/3 cup chopped fresh parsley

* Used 3 tbsp sauteed diced onion from freezer

Heat vegetable oil in a large saute pan over medium-high heat.

Add ground beef, season with salt and pepper and cook, stirring and breaking up beef occasionally, until browned. Transfer beef to a plate lined with paper towels while reserving 2 tbsp of the rendered fat in pan, set beef aside.

Add onion and carrots to pan and saute 1 minute, then add coleslaw and saute 2 minutes, then add garlic and saute 1 minute longer.

Pour in beef broth, tomato sauce, tomatoes, brown sugar, Worcestershire, paprika, oregano, thyme and bay leaves. Return beef to soup mixture.

Season soup with salt and pepper to taste and bring to a light boil, then add rice, cover pot and reduce heat and simmer until rice is cooked through, stirring occasionally, about 25 minutes.

Stir in up to 1 cup water or more beef broth to thin as desired (it will thicken as it rests and become almost like a stew), then stir in lemon juice and parsley.

Serve hot.

Mapo Tofu – Szechuan style ground beef, tofu and broccoli dish, served over long grain rice. I’ve made variations of this dish in the past.

Soboro Don – Japanese rice bowl topped with seasoned ground beef and peas. Recipe adapted from this one.

Beef and Bean Burritos – Seasoned ground beef with home made black bean refried beans. Top as desired.


5 thoughts on “Ground Beef … Soup, Rice Bowls and Burritos

  1. I absolutely have to make this ground meat soup and Soboro Don, but I’ll use turkey for both. I do not know (or have ever seen) any Japanese dishes with meat. It will be interesting to try. Thank you for sharing!

    1. Japanese dishes do use meat but it’s usually used in small amounts as garnish/flavouring rather than huge slabs as in the west. One of the first dishes I made was korokke or ‘croquettes’ with ground beef or chicken.

      And then there’s chicken katsu (breaded and fried chicken cutlet), chicken curry and chicken yakitori (chicken threaded onto skewers, grilled and basted with sauce).

      And of course, they love their chicken karaage (fried chicken). If I didn’t have this phobia against deep frying I’d have made it ages ago. In the recipe below, boneless, skin on chicken thighs are used.

      And they have several delicious beef and potato stew dishes. And this.

      1. Thank you for all these wonderful links, dear friend! Historically, only the lowest class of the Japanese society ate meat, and only because they were leather and hide workers. The tanneries were isolated in a small area in every large city, and even the peasants, who were on the bottom of social strata, could not abide the stink of those areas. I don’t know when the meat dishes became acceptable throughout all classes of society, but I have seen both chicken katsu and yakitori in kosher sushi restaurants and always assumed that those have been invented for foreigners. I have to ask my Jewish Japanese lady friend.

      2. I remember reading about the meat/slaughterhouse issues in the classic “Shogun” about feudal Japan. The part where he hung up the pheasant to ‘ripen’ and the foul stench affected the harmony of the house and one of the servants volunteered to take it down and bury it. He committed suicide afterwards since he had violated the direct orders by the master of the household, Blackthorne.

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