The Great White Bear has spoken. Here is a new recipe. I love this dish. My mother passed it on to me and she originally got it from Canadian Living. It's Greek-ish and will feed a family with yummy leftovers.
2 cups macaroni
1 tbsp butter
1 chopped onion
garlic to taste (I like lots, but that's just me)
1 1/2 lbs ground turkey or lean ground beef (they are interchangeable; I like the turkey, though)
1/2 tsp each ground oregano, salt, and cinnamon (or to taste; I usually add more cinnamon)
1/4 tsp pepper
1 can (5.5oz/156mL) tomato paste
1 tbsp red wine vinegar
1/4 cup chopped parsley
2 tbsp dried bread crumbs (the fine ones, not the ones you may make stuffing out of)
1 cup parmesan cheese (for God's sake - spend the money and get the real stuff! It's worth it)
1 can (14oz/398mL) stewed tomatoes (in Canada, I have never seen the 14oz cans; the 19oz works fine)
2 tbsp butter
2 tbsp flour
1 cup milk
1 cup cottage cheese
1 egg beaten
pinch of nutmeg, salt & pepper
1. Cook pasta and drain. In large frying pan, saute onion & garlic in the butter. Stir in turkey and spices and cook until the meat is no longer pink. Drain off the fat. Stir in tomatoes, paste, and vinegar. Cook for about 3 minutes, stirring. Remove from heat; stir in parsley & set aside. (You can make the mixture ahead of time and refrigerate it until you need it.)
2. For the sauce (which must be made right before you need it), melt the butter over medium heat in a small saucepan. Whisk in the flour and cook for 2 minutes (this will cook out the starch in the flour and make the texture of the sauce smooth on your palate). Pour in the milk & whisk for about 5 minutes or until it's thickened. You want it to be a nice thick sauce, not a runny one, but it shouldn't be too thick. Remove from heat and stir in the cottage cheese, egg, nutmeg, etc.
3. The original recipe calls for using a 10" pie plate; my experience is that this is too small a dish for this amount of food. A 9x13 casserole would probably work, or something along those lines. Anyways, grease your dish & sprinkle it with the bread crumbs. Spoon in half of the macaroni. Spread the meat mixture evenly on top. Sprinkle with 1/3 of the parmesan cheese. Spoon the remaining macaroni over that. Pour the sauce on top. Sprinkle with remaining cheese.
4. Place the dish on a baking sheet (to prevent a mess in case it bubbles over) and bake at 350 for 50 - 60 minutes, or until bubbling and sauce is golden on top.
You can never go wrong with Canadian Living. I make a lot of their recipes and they always turn out and taste great. One of my dream jobs would be working in their test kitchen. Sooo, anyone who knows anyone who knows anyone... I've been to culinary school....I can write...I love Canadian Living... I'm willing to go on t.v.... You know how to reach me.